For the vast majority of people, there will never be a need for an immigration lawyer. They will be born, live and die in the same country, venturing to other countries only to take holidays and see the sights. But, for other people, particularly in our current climate, immigration could be the way to a new life, and with Brexit, people who believed they were long settled in the UK have now had to look again at their residency and the validity of their right to be in the UK.
My father-in-law is just one of those people who has now had to look at his permanent residency in the UK. He came to Britain as an 18 year old in 1962, coming from his European country of birth, Italy. Aside from holidays, he has never again resided in Italy, settling in the Midlands, marrying an English woman, and having two children, and then two grandchildren. His wife, my mother-in-law, died in 2009 and he is now a retired widower. He never once considered that he would have to apply for residency in a country he had lived in for almost 60 years.
But then Brexit occurred and the vote was to leave, and suddenly his situation changed dramatically overnight. My father-in-law had never applied for UK residency in the past, nor had he applied for citizenship, or even a UK passport, and, even though he had come to the UK before we joined the EEC in 1973, he will now have to apply for residency through the almost infamous Windrush scheme. It is a worrying time for us as a family as nothing is actually guarenteed, although we are hoping that the long term residency, paying of taxes, having a wife and a family in the UK, and now claiming a UK pension will be enough. But the amount of paperwork that is required is daunting, and it would be quite easy to sink under the weight.
This is where an immigration lawyer could be a huge benefit. Lawyers like Jean Danhong Chen are able to help with the vast amount of paperwork that comes with these sort of cases. They can help you to understand the documentation that you need to provide, and give you advice on where you can access it if you can no longer find, or have access to the original documents. They can make the phone calls to the official channels, write the letters and find the answers that you need so that you can make your case for citizenship and settled status. These can be things that you are struggling with, especially if you are also working full time.
My father-in-laws situation is far from unique, many people came to the UK well before we joined the European community and now consider themselves to be British, even if there actual paperwork says otherwise. Being able to get some legal advice and support from someone who actually understands the situation could provide the peace of mind you need, and help you to get the relevant documentation to continue your life.