Clare Hedges


Senior Associate - Head of Immigration

'Supportive and understanding' [Clare] ‘has excellent knowledge of immigration matters and knows the pitfalls of getting Visas‘. Clients praise her ‘specialist knowledge of and insights into immigration law and her impressive track record of assisting clients to a successful conclusion'.

Legal 500 [UK 2019]

Experience

Clare qualified as a Solicitor in September 2007. She is a Senior Associate and leads our Immigration Team, applying 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.

 

Clare is based in our Cambridge office and supports colleagues and clients in all four offices.

Other Information

Clare supports overseas clients setting up in the UK and has experience of managing international projects. A fluent French speaker, she also acts as local contact for French law matters.  Clare is an active member of AIJA (the international network for young lawyers) and regularly represents Birketts at meetings of IAG Global, our network of lawyers, accountants and tax advisors at independent practices in over 60 countries around the world.

Clare Hedges is recommended by Legal 500 [UK 2019] and is listed in the elite 'Leading Individuals' list of lawyers nationwide. 'Supportive and understanding' [Clare] ‘has excellent knowledge of immigration matters and knows the pitfalls of getting Visas‘. Clients praise her ‘specialist knowledge of and insights into immigration law and her impressive track record of assisting clients to a successful conclusion'. 

In the previous edition she was praised for being "extremely knowledgeable". Sources note that she "has excellent communication skills, makes the process clear and hassle-free, and is non-judgmental when clients ask silly questions".

Clare has been named as an 'associate to watch' by Chambers [UK 2019]. She is praised for her "high knowledge base and attention to detail."  In the previous edition she was described as "professional, very helpful and very good at explaining all scenarios in order for us to make an informed decision.”

The Legal 500 Leading Individual 2019