Ms Bahar Ata > Duncan Lewis Solicitors > Luton, England > Lawyer Profile

Duncan Lewis Solicitors

Work Department

Public Law and Immigration


Bahar Ata is a director in the public law and immigration departments at Duncan Lewis Solicitors who supervises a team of dedicated lawyers representing the most vulnerable in society. Since taking on the position of director she has grown her small team of three to a fully-fledged department of twenty dedicated lawyers, making it one of the fastest growing teams in the firm.

Since 2016 she has been involved in setting up the firm’s dedicated bail team which represents those detained under immigration powers as well as to bring challenges against the Secretary of State for the Home Department for unlawful detention, false imprisonment claims and failure to provide accommodation.

Bahar has been practicing immigration and human rights law for more than 14 years and has expertise in representing clients in unlawful detention claims, challenges against the Competent Authority decisions in respect of trafficking claims, age assessments challenges and challenging removals to third countries under Dublin Regulations. She has extensive experience representing clients at the High Court, the Court of Appeal, and at the Supreme Court.

She was the lead lawyer in representing clients in group litigation in challenging detention under Article 28 of Dublin III Regulations, where the Supreme Court handed down a landmark judgment in R (on the application of Hemmati and others) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2019] UKSC 56. The court unanimously found that Secretary of State for the Home Department had acted unlawfully by detaining the appellants whilst their claims were being considered under the Dublin III regulations.

She was also the lead lawyer representing claimants in challenging removals to Hungary and Bulgaria under Dublin III Regulations. The High Court decision in the case of Ibrahimi & Anor v The Secretary of State for the Home Department [2016] EWHC 2049 (Admin), is the only one of its kind where the Secretary of State accepted the decision of the High Court that returning asylum seekers to Hungary would breach their Article 4 of the European Charter of Fundamental Rights. This has seen proven success; since 2016 there have been no removals to Hungary from the UK under the Dublin III Regulations.

In 2019 Bahar was awarded the Cilex Legal Expert award in 2019, having been shortlisted as a finalist for the same award in 2018. She was also a finalist for Lawyer of the Year award at the 2019 Modern Law Awards.


Bahar joined the firm in 2011 and was appointed to partner-level director in 2017. She recently won the Legal Expert Award at the CILEx (Chartered Institutes of Legal Executives) National Awards 2019, and was a finalist for the Lawyer of the Year award at the Modern Law Awards 2019.


Bahar is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives. She is a member of ILPA and is accredited Level 3 (Advanced) in the Immigration and Asylum Accreditation Scheme.


LLB (Hons) – London Metropolitan University.

Lawyer Rankings

South East > Employment > Immigration

Duncan Lewis Solicitors fields a sizeable and experienced team of immigration lawyers from its offices in Harrow, Milton Keynes and Luton. The team focuses on personal immigration, and handles high-stakes matters in the areas of human rights, detention, asylum, and civil liberties, with significant experience acting on judicial review cases. Multiple lawyers in the team have experience arguing before the High Court, Court of Appeal, and Supreme Court, including Toufique Hossain, Bahar Ata, Tamana Aziz and Rohena Wallace. Hossain’s clients included survivors of torture, sexual abuse and trafficking, while Wallace is especially recognised for her expertise in European rights law, prison law and terrorism cases. Ahmed Aydeed and Zofia Duszynska are also highly recommended.