LAURA DEVINE SOLICITORS is one of the best-known firms in England for immigration work. Three of its UK-based attorneys are listed.
"Transatlantic powerhouse" Laura Devine is "just brilliant" according to sources who add, "Between the very many good immigration practitioners in the UK, she stands out as the best.” She is the highest-rated UK lawyer in our research this year.
Sophie Barrett-Brown is variously described as "a brilliant technical lawyer" and "one of the most dedicated and knowledgeable practitioners I know". She is an expert on the comprehensive range of UK and EU immigration law.
Natasha Chell has "extensive knowledge of immigration law", according to interviewees who also comment on her "ability to think of creative solutions" as a key strength
LAURA DEVINE ATTORNEYS’ Anastasia Tonello is the firm’s New York managing partner. She has an exceptional reputation in the market, with one leading international peer saying, "She's in my top 10!"
Laura Devine Solicitors’ ‘expert’ team delivers advice ‘with clarity, efficiency and total focus on the most relevant legal points’, and is consistently commended as ‘one of the best’ for immigration law, handling both business and personal matters. With a transatlantic presence, the firm is ‘particularly good where there is an interplay with US immigration law’. Managing partner Laura Devine is ‘a clear leader in the field’, and advises on both UK and US immigration. Head of the UK practice Sophie Barrett-Brown is ‘exceptional, and appears to know everything there is to know about the points-based system’; she advises SMEs and start-ups, education institutions, and sports and entertainment organisations, as well as entrepreneurs and senior executives. Head of human rights and appeals Malini Skandachanmugarasan is ‘very impressive’, and handles a range of complex matters and Article 8 cases. Christi Hufford Jackson heads the US practice. Head of compliance Natasha Chell has ‘fantastic knowledge’ and is an expert in corporate immigration, with particular expertise in sponsor licensing and Tier 2 matters.
The "incredibly astute" Sophie Barrett-Brown of Laura Devine Solicitors wins widespread praise from her peers for her mastery of the intricacies of immigration law. "She loves the cut and thrust of technical law," says a source, "I respect her hugely." Others describe her as an "extremely able practitioner" and "particularly respected." One source praises her as a "brilliant lawyer" who gives "very honest high-level advice." Her active participation in the Immigration Law Practitioners' Association (ILPA) is also noted.
New York’s Laura Devine Attorneys LLC is the US associate office of top-tier British immigration boutique Laura Devine Solicitors. Its transatlantic model translates into a leading practice advising on cross-border issues between the UK and US, and it is particularly renowned for its strong relationships with government bodies in both counties. Managing partner Anastasia Tonello heads a team of ‘very efficient and plain-speaking’ lawyers, which also includes senior associates Jennifer Stevens, who is ‘utterly fantastic’, and Jessica Churchman, who is ‘always clear on costs and timeline expectations’. Clients are drawn from the finance, fashion, technology, business and entertainment industries, among others, and it also represents several high-profile high-net-worth individuals.
What the team is known for High-quality boutique specializing in US and UK immigration matters. Enjoys a fine reputation across a variety of industries, such as finance and fashion, for clients ranging from individuals, families and businesses. Counts comprehensive visa services among its strengths, as well as being noted for its green card, waivers of inadmissibility and consulate-related expertise.
Strengths One client comments: "They're flawless, eloquent and timely. There was no question I asked where they didn't know the answer. They made it very easy, and I got an even better service than what I was promised."
Clients report: "The firm has very good billing transparency. The firm's strengths are client service, follow-through, clarity of advice and knowledge of the subject matter."
Sources say Anastasia Tonello "knows everything about immigration law in the States." She is qualified to practice in both the UK and the USA and has particular expertise in extraordinary ability visas. One client comments: "She is very eloquent in reducing complicated legal documents and verbiage to something that a non-lawyer can understand. Time zones didn't matter to her: she always made herself available." Another adds: "She's very results-oriented and logical, and I always feel confident that she's covered all of the bases."
Jennifer Stevens is "amazing, smart, articulate and gives specific answers," according to sources. Clients appreciate that she is "very cognizant of what we need to achieve as an employer and how we need to operate within the confines of the immigration system."
What the team is known for Highly regarded for its business immigration advice to multinationals, SMEs and individual entrepreneurs. Of particular note is the US immigration expertise on offer in co-operation with the firm's New York office.
Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"I think that their customer service is fantastic, they're diligent and always highly responsive. They really do go the extra mile for us."
Laura Devine is known across the business immigration sector for her mastery of the field. An impressed commentator notes: "I think her work is absolutely wonderful."
Sources describe Sophie Barrett-Brown as "an excellent technical lawyer" with "very good connections" who is "at the top of the tree when it comes to Tier 1 investors." She is adept at tackling discretionary cases and other complex matters.