Law

Migration Law Clinic

The Migration Law Clinic (MLC) offers pro bono (cost-free) immigration and asylum law advice to members of the public who cannot access legal aid and cannot afford to pay privately for a legal practitioner.

Our aim

Our aim is to help address the gap in access to justice for asylum seekers, refugees and other vulnerable migrants. The MLC is a student law clinic, within the University of Sussex Law School. The advice we provide is initially drafted by a small team of our final year law students and is then amended and finalized by a solicitor or barrister before being provided to our clients in the form of a letter of advice. This is the newest addition to the University’s Law Clinic projects. It began providing immigration advice in February 2019.

Background

Local and regional organisations, such as the Brighton and Hove City Council, Migrant English Project, Voices in Exile, Gatwick Detainee Welfare Group and the Brighton Housing Trust, have alerted us to an increasing need for more cost-free legal advice in relation to immigration and asylum law, in light of the decreasing access to legal aid in relation to immigration cases. The MLC was OISC registered to Level 3 in December 2018 and has been providing advice to members of the public since February 2019. This Clinic also offers Sussex Law School students hands-on experience of complex legal issues in an important area of legal practice, thereby increasing their employability and providing a valuable set of transferable skills.

What we do

We are authorized by the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC) to provide immigration and asylum law advice up to OISC level 3. We are currently focused on asylum and human rights claims, including claims for entry clearance or leave to remain based on family life in the UK under Article 8 of the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR) and claims for leave to remain as the victim of domestic violence. We are also able to provide advice on issues relating to citizenship.

We offer clients 45-minute appointments, on Wednesday afternoons, during which you will be able to tell us about your issues and what questions you have. Our students will then conduct the necessary research and write you a letter of advice, identifying your current legal position, any potential applications that should be considered, the relevant law and procedure and the necessary next steps. We can also advise on what evidence you need to provide in order to support your case.

The advice we provide is initially drafted by a small team of our final year law students and is then amended and finalized by a solicitor or barrister before being provided to our clients in the form of a letter of advice.

We can provide interpreters where necessary.

Please note: We are an advice only service, meaning that we provide legal advice but not legal representation. For example, our students are not able to represent clients in the Courts or Immigration Tribunals. We are also limited in that we only operate a full service during University term time

Interviews will take place at the Freeman Building, University of Sussex campus, BN1 9QE. Free parking is available.

Please be aware that we have a limited number of appointments to offer and consequently there can often be a significant waiting list.

Areas on which we offer advice:

  • Asylum claims (including fresh claims and other protection claims)
  • Refugee Family Reunion
  • Family and Private Life Claims (Article 8 ECHR)
  • Leave to remain as a Victim of Domestic Violence

How to Contact us

Please complete the online enquiry form on our website, or leave a message with your name, contact number and a brief account of your legal issue or question. A student will call you back and arrange an appointment.

E: migrationlaw@sussex.ac.uk

T: 01273 876797

For general enquiries – E: lawclinic@sussex.ac.uk

Please note

The service is open only to the general public. We are unfortunately not able to take referrals from University of Sussex staff members or from current University of Sussex students. If you are a current University of Sussex student in need of advice, we ask that you contact the Students’ Union or Student Experience in the first instance.

The Migration Law Clinic will not be able to advise clients where their issue raises a conflict of interest (for example, where we have already assisted a party to the same case). 

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 Registration number N201800026