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Birketts LLP

Work 01223 326600
Fax 01223 326629
Cambridge, Chelmsford, Ipswich, Norwich

Clare Hedges

Work 01223 326605
Birketts LLP

Work Department



Senior Associate - Head of Immigration


Clare applies her extensive knowledge of immigration law to help clients find creative solutions to achieve their goals in the UK.  She helps organisations to recruit and retain the migrant workers they need and supports individuals and families wishing to enter and/or remain in the UK. 

In addition to regularly obtaining Tier 2 General and Intra-Company Transfer visas, Clare’s work with our charity clients means she also has experience of more unusual categories of the Points Based System, including Tier 2 Ministers of Religion and Tier 5 Religious and Charity Workers.  She also helps education institutions protect their Tier 4 Student sponsor licences.  She also deals with sponsor licence issues arising following mergers and acquisitions and helping overseas companies obtain the appropriate visa for their sole representative in the UK.

Clare advises individuals on a wide range of applications, including family-related visas, those based on UK Ancestry and visas for Entrepreneurs and Investors.  Due to Brexit Clare is increasingly supporting EEA nationals with permanent residence, settlement and naturalisation, by submitting applications on their behalf or offering a checking service.

Thanks to her previous experience as an employment lawyer Clare has particular expertise in advising on the prevention of illegal working, ensuring employers balance competing Home Office and employment law requirements.

Clare helps our clients to manage immigration risk, by providing training on sponsorship duties and carrying out immigration compliance audits.  She also delivers workshops for HR and line managers on right to work checks and regularly runs seminars for EU nationals regarding their options to secure their status in the UK.


A fluent French speaker, she also acts as local contact for French law matters.




University of Cambridge

East Anglia: Human resources


Within: Leading individuals

Clare Hedges - Birketts LLP

Within: Immigration

Birketts LLP¬†provides ‚Äėvery good and very knowledgeable service and support‚Äė. One client describes the practice as ‚Äėoutstanding ‚Äď the firm had current, in-depth knowledge of Visa¬† processes, relevant regulations, supporting document requirements and timelines‚Äė. Another describes 'thorough knowledge of immigration legislation, especially the points based system'.¬†'Supportive and understanding' senior associate Clare Hedges, whose employment law practice has now transitioned to focus full-time on immigration, has ‚Äėexcellent knowledge of immigration matters and¬†knows the pitfalls of¬†getting Visas‚Äė. Clients praise her ‚Äėspecialist knowledge of and insights into immigration law and her impressive track record of assisting clients to a successful conclusion'. She is now supported by a specialist paralegal. Her recent highlights include advising the Bishop of Lincoln on the appointment of a new Bishop's Chaplain, which involved ensuring the recruitment process¬†complied with the Home Office's resident labour market test. JRL Group and Frontier Developments are also among her clients.

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East Anglia: Private client

Charities and not-for-profit

Within: Charities and not-for-profit

At Birketts LLP 'the overall level of service is excellent and the team is extremely knowledgeable, showing an in-depth understanding of the issues'. The firm acts for more than 400 charity clients, advising on charity law, ecclesiastical law, corporate matters including mergers, compliance, endowments, disputes, commercial property and retail, social enterprise structures, academy conversions, trustee powers and employment law. Senior associates Sara Sayer and Liz Brownsell lead the practice. Brownsell was a member of the Charity Law Association Working Party that consulted on the new Charity Governance Code. Sayer and legal director Erika Clarke have particular expertise in public procurement and state aid, advising on contentious and non-contentious matters arising from projects and collaborations. Commercial property partner Gavin Acheson advised Trust for London on the £11m acquisition, refurbishment and letting of premises in London, which was let to an independent creative media higher education college. Associate Amanda Timcke, who joined from Birkett Long LLP, is also recommended for property matters. Senior associate Kitty Rosser in the corporate and commercial team, who is a recognised expert in data protection and the GDPR, is 'particularly good and easy to work with, she gives clear explanations'. Also recommended are James Hall and Stuart Jones for ecclesiastical matters, and senior associate Clare Hedges for employment law.

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South East: Private client

Charities and not-for-profit

Within: Charities and not-for-profit

Birketts LLP fields 'an extremely knowledgeable team with an in-depth understanding of the issues facing the charities sector'. Its clients consist of more than 400 charities and not-for-profit organisations, including The Stroke Association, for which the practice handles matters ranging from charity mergers and incorporations and fundraising regulatory compliance, to real estate and contentious legacy issues. The practice is headed by Sara Sayer, who has an extensive track record handling disputes and public law matters. She is ably supported by commercial property partner Gavin Acheson, and senior associate and immigration specialist Clare Hedges. Brownsell acts for Amnesty International on on a range of contracts with professional fundraisers and commercial participants. Other recent highlights include acting for Trust for London on the acquisition, refurbishment and letting of central London premises for letting to an independent higher education college; and assisting the Institute of Fundraising with a national bespoke training programme concerning the impact of the General Data Protection Regulation on charities.

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