Who’s Who Legal brings together three leading experts in the corporate immigration industry to discuss issues facing lawyers today.
By Jacqueline Bart of BartLAW Canadian Immigration Barristers and Solicitors
On 1 December 2015, the Canadian government brought into force stringent employer compliance rules. These rules place Canada first as the toughest jurisdiction against non-compliant employers. The rules introduce a comprehensive formula to assess monetary administrative penalties for employer non-compliance, in addition to other penalties set out below.
By Bernard P Wolfsdorf, Joseph M Barnett and Robert J Blanco of Wolfsdorf Rosenthal
About a decade ago Thomas L Friedman, foreign affairs columnist for The New York Times, published The World is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century, which described the complexities of 21st century globalisation to demonstrate a growing “levelling” of the global economy.
By Laura Devine of Laura Devine Solicitors
First announced in the Queen’s Speech in May 2015, the UK’s newest Immigration Bill tackles a broad spectrum of issues and builds on the Immigration Act 2014, which in part sought to create a “hostile environment” for undocumented migrants in the UK. For businesses and individuals alike, the proposed measures could have significant effects.
By Maria Jockel of BDO Migration Services
Following the merger of the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (the Department) with the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service, and the establishment of the Australian Border Force as its operational enforcement arm, the Department is now an enforcement agency (and a criminal enforcement agency).
Corporate immigration was the first practice area researched in our series, and Who’s Who Legal: Corporate Immigration remains one of our flagship publications – one which always draws a fantastic response from our market sources. The USA is still the dominant market by far for immigration work, with over two-thirds of our global listings being made up of US attorneys. A further 10 per cent of the listings comprise UK and Irish lawyers, with Canadian practitioners constituting 5 per cent more. In total, lawyers from 43 countries feature. 632 of the best immigration lawyers in the world are highlighted this year. Although all of our listed lawyers are highly recommended, our editorial below focuses on the best of the best from around the world.
After the extraordinary scenes witnessed in 2015, with refugees and migrants entering Europe by land and water at an unprecedented rate, few would have predicted that 2016 would see further events with potentially far-reaching impacts on the Western world for generations to come. Numerous governments around the world have gradually – or, in some cases, suddenly – taken a more isolationist stance, as political upheaval, the real or perceived threat from terrorism and, in some instances, mistrust, division and xenophobia have shaped attitudes towards migration and immigrants. The immigration legal market has been left to react as best as it can to the unexpected and significant events of 2016.
Featuring 637 of the world’s leading practitioners across 43 jurisdictions and 384 law firms, Who's Who Legal: Corporate Immigration 2016 is a one-stop shop for the global corporate immigration legal market.
The highly specialised nature of the market means that it is mainly composed of boutique law firms with relatively few full-service firms ranking among the most prominent in our research. The field is led by global immigration powerhouse Fragomen, with fellow global immigration service provider Berry Appleman & Leiden ranking second in our listings.
Seyfarth Shaw, Foster, Wolfsdorf Rosenthal, Maggio Kattar Nahajzer & Alexander, and Miller Mayer are among the most prominent immigration specialists in the highly competitive US market. Meanwhile, Kingsley Napley leads the immigration outfits in the UK.
We also recommend the top 10 practitioners both inside and outside the US in this section.
The past year has witnessed some of the most severe political upheavals across the world in recent history. The great surge in global migration has rendered immigration a polemic issue, with more than 1 million migrants and refugees arriving into Europe in 2015. Such drastic changes on an international level, coupled with the increased globalisation of business, have brought the topic of immigration to the forefront of current political, social and economic debate.
Our brand new Corporate Immigration edition features 545 of the world's best lawyers, stretching out over 38 jurisdictions and 345 law firms.
The corporate immigration landscape is dominated by specialised independent law firms. No firm stands out for its international depth like Fragomen Del Rey Bernsen & Loewy, which once again leads our research with lawyers in America, Europe and Asia-Pacific. Meanwhile, US immigration giant Berry Appleman & Leiden also impresses with its number of listings. Beyond this we have selected some truly outstanding boutiques and have also highlighted the 10 most highly regard lawyers in North America, as well as the top five across Europe; Latin America; Asia-Pacific; and Africa and the Middle-East.
Talk of reform has remained at the forefront of everybody’s minds and corporate immigration lawyers worldwide accept that the sweeping changes they are ever-hopeful for have still not materialised in many cases. With elections in many of the major immigration jurisdictions coming up, the political nature of this area of law has once again reared its head, leaving several practitioners frustrated with piecemeal change – and in many cases, not even that.
Practitioners from firms of all sizes across the world have been selected for inclusion this year, reflecting the global scope and varied nature of the corporate immigration field. Within our research several firms stand out due to the high number of listings they achieve, with immigration giant Fragomen leading the way. The firm has lawyers from 19 of its offices around the globe singled out demonstrating its wide-reaching international presence. Following closely behind is Berry Appleman & Leiden, which has individuals from the US and Brazil recognised, and FosterQuan is also strongly represented in this edition.
We also select the 15 most highly regarded practitioners in the world who stand out for the depth of their expertise.
Compliance and reform remain the two key issues facing corporate immigration lawyers worldwide. The clear conclusion is that immigration “has gone mainstream” – both legally and politically. This has led to an increase in the number of firms and practitioners on previous years, as larger firms attempt to bulk up their immigration practices, and a greater number of sole practitioners branch out to go it alone.
In this section we analyse the findings of our research in greater depth to identify the firms and practitioners who stand out worldwide. This year we identify 476 lawyers from 393 firms in 31 countries, with global powerhouse Fragomen fielding 32 lawyers from 15 different jurisdictions to this edition. Berry Appleman & Leiden has an impressive 13 individuals recognised from its offices in the US and Brazil. Eight practitioners from FosterQuan are singled out this year, all of whom hail from the firm's offices in Texas.
We also select the 15 leading individuals who are most highly regarded internationally in this field worldwide.
With the benefit of over 15 years of research and thousands of votes from clients and private practitioners, Who’s Who Legal takes a closer look at the developing trends in the corporate immigration legal marketplace worldwide. Last year we reported that the nature of corporate immigration work is increasingly difficult to predict and administer, and the relationship between lawyers and agencies continues to be strained by bureaucracy and anti-immigration agendas. This year, governments are making attempts to remedy these challenges in the market.
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Nominees have been selected based upon comprehensive, independent survey work with both general counsel and private practice lawyers worldwide. Only specialists who have met independent international research criteria are listed.