I have more than a decade’s experience helping businesses and private clients to navigate UK immigration law.
I joined Lewis Silkin in February 2017 as a Senior Associate and following promotions became a Director in April 2022. Before joining the firm I gained ten years’ experience in UK immigration law at top ranked immigration practices in London and have continued to build on this since.
I hold a double degree awarded by the University of Technology Sydney in 2005 and 2006 for a Bachelor of Arts, Communications in Social Inquiry and a Bachelor of Laws.
I qualified as a solicitor in New South Wales, Australia in 2008 after completing the Practical Law Training and then in the England and Wales in January 2010 after completing the Qualified Lawyers Transfer Test.
I have completed a short course in Global Migration from Oxford University and have specialised in UK immigration law since 2007.
I am a member of the Immigration Law Practitioners’ Association and regularly contribute to Home Office, VFS and Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) projects.
Immigration & Global Mobility
I have managed UK business immigration accounts from small to very large with hundreds of visa applications every year. Alongside this, I have also assisted countless high net worth and ultra high net worth individuals to navigate their UK immigration journey in the manner best suited to their goals.
Whilst my current focus is in the science, technology and engineering industries, I have worked with corporate clients in a broad array of sectors including; oil and gas, financial, media, advertising, consulting, manufacturing, hospitality, design and advertising. My high net worth clients have derived their wealth from exciting trajectories in music, film and the arts, design, modelling, hospitality and natural resources, among others. Accordingly, I recognise that clients value flexibility, practicality and clarity from their legal advisors. I endeavour to always provide this in the manner best suited to their unique situation and priorities.
My clients come from a broad range of industry sectors and I advise on the full range of business immigration routes to the UK as well as applicable personal immigration options and issues. This includes applications for Sole Representative of an Overseas Business visas, Skilled Worker, Scale Up and Tier 5 Sponsor Licences and associated Skilled Worker, Scale Up, Global Mobility, applications as well as UK expansion visa, Global Talent and High Potential Individual visas to name a few.
In the current immigration climate, preparing corporate clients for potential Home Office audits and ensuring compliance is vitally important and forms a significant portion of my work via training and mock audits. I have successfully challenged a lot of Civil Penalties under the Illegal Working Regime and, to assist in their prevention, developed practical measures to fit cooperatively with clients’ existing business systems.
I regularly meet with senior Home Office officials, which affords me high level contacts and insight, to better service my clients’ immigration needs. I have consulted and advised the MAC, Home Office policy officials and Westminster Forums on key UK immigration developments.
Technology & Communications and Policy work
As the previous Vice Chair of techUK’s Skills, Talent and Migration Group, I advised and consulted on the unique concerns of STEM companies within the requirements and restrictions of immigration law. I also established and ran an official partnership with Tech UK for the Global Talent visa. From these experiences and practical experience with various clients, I have gained a large body of work with scientific, medical and tech companies within various specialisms. The one thing that really draws them all together is the varying but fascinating work they do at the forefront of change and discovery. They are exciting to work with and require practical and speedy assistance to ensure they can get and retain the best talent globally.
Awards and Recognition
- Chambers 2022 (Immigration) - 'Brilliant - Naomi is impeccable. She responds in a timely manner and is helpful beyond belief'
- Chambers 2022 (Immigration) - 'She is a very able and capable lawyer who knows her market well'
- Legal 500 2022 (Immigration) - ‘Naomi Hanrahan-Soar has been incredibly responsive. She also gave a remarkably clear and candid training to our largely foreign team regarding Brexit, bringing much appreciated visibility in a highly changing landscape’
- Chambers 2021 (Immigration: Business) - "She is brilliant - she is very balanced with her advice, very responsive and doesn't make promises she can't keep"
- Chambers 2021 (Immigration: Business) - "Her advice is incredibly well written, persuasive and commercially strong"
- Legal 500 2021 (Immigration) - ‘Naomi Hanrahan-Soar is knowledgeable and well positioned to deal with matters which engage both employment and immigration issues. Her commercial slant makes her particularly suited to focusing on how litigation fits in with the client’s overall aims’