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Hannah Baynes , Duncan Lewis , Public Law Solicitor , Harrow

Hannah Baynes

Solicitor

Contact Information

Profile / Experience

I am a Solicitor within working within Public Law and Immigration Law at Duncan Lewis Solicitors.


I have extensive experience representing clients in Judicial Review proceedings. I have particular interest in representing vulnerable individuals, such as victims of torture, victims of trafficking and disputed minors with complex unlawful detention claims. I have previously represented Claimants challenging the certification of their asylum claims on Third Country Grounds and who have received removal directions to Cyprus and Italy. In addition, I have worked on a number of cases involving vulnerable individuals whose asylum claims were previously dealt with under the Detained Fast Track scheme. On numerous occasions, I have obtained a last minute stay on removal to prevent the removal of clients to countries such as Afghanistan and Nigeria on the basis of their health and fitness to fly.


In March 2017, I lodged a Judicial Review application for a client with removal directions to Nigeria. In the process of her removal, Home Office-contracted Tascor officials placed her in a waist restraint belt and dragged her across the ground. Her experience was documented in an article in the Guardian newspaper.

Education

  • Postgraduate Diploma in Legal Practice (LPC) at the College of Law, Manchester
  • LLB Honours at the University of Liverpool

Career

  • 2013- present – Caseworker and subsequently Trainee Solicitor at Duncan Lewis Solicitors. I was admitted as a Solicitor on 1 July 2016.
  • 2011-2013 – Caseworker/Paralegal at Switalskis Solicitors, Wakefield

Testimonials

  • "Ms. Baynes has provided outstanding assistance to one of our clients this year, helping to secure their re-access to education this year and timely permission to sit his interim examinations, following a restriction imposed on his study permissions earlier this year. Ms. Baynes has continued to offer her services to any other of our clients who have been issued with this restriction on their permission to study in the UK, proactively offering advice and support across the refugee sector. She has spearheaded a campaign to raise awareness of the restrictions on young asylum seekers in accessing education, promoting national coverage of this issue in widespread media. I understand that she is also advocating to the Home Office on this specific issue, to secure improved rights and entitlements for young asylum-seeking students and prospective students, recognising the hope that is developing in young people through education.

    Ms. Baynes works with diligence and commitment to each of her clients – seeing the individual and their specific needs, as well as tackling the issues impacting them. She is approachable and accessible, on hand to offer advice and advocacy when needed. I fully support her nomination for this role, and have been impressed by the excellent quality and outcomes of her work to date."
    - Bryony Norman Senior Programmes Officer – Specialist Educational Support, Refugee Support Network

  • "I have worked with Hannah for almost a year now, and she has been consistently responsive, conscientious and cheerful even in the face of stressful situations. She is open to discussion and different ideas, she is collaborative in her approach, and she genuinely cares about her clients. It’s been a pleasure working with her." - Eleanor Mitchell, Matrix Law

  • "I have worked with Hannah for a number of years now dealing with some extremely vulnerable clients in extremely difficult circumstances. She is very diligent, calm under pressure and produces excellent work." - Greg Ó Ceallaigh, Garden Court Chambers

Notable Cases

High Court

Sl v The Director of Legal Aid Casework [2015] EWHC 1466 Admin (reported on Justis) – This was a Judicial Review Claim where the refusal of the Legal Aid Agency to grant Exceptional Case Funding for an immigration appeal was held to be unlawful. The Claimant was a St. Lucian national who had spent a considerable amount of time residing lawfully in the UK, and who suffered from mental health problems stemming from her experiences of sexual abuse in St. Lucia. The Judge held that the Legal Aid Agency had failed to take into account the guidance on vulnerable witnesses and the medical evidence provided by our client that she was unable to represent herself at her immigration appeal hearing. For further information, please see my article on the Duncan Lewis website.


JJ (Sri Lanka) – This was a Judicial Review claim involving an individual whose asylum claim had been certified by the Secretary of State for the Home Department (SSHD) as he had previously claimed asylum in Cyprus. In this case, it was argued that as our client has family members in the UK (in particular, a brother whose asylum claim overlaps with our client’s) who have been granted refugee status in the UK, the SSHD should exercise her discretion and decide his asylum claim in the UK. After the Administrative Court refused our client’s Judicial Review claim, the Court of Appeal granted permission to appeal and the matter was listed for a hearing. Prior to this hearing, the SSHD agreed to settle the matter and to consider our client’s asylum claim within the UK.


Pour and Ors – These were the lead cases to challenge the removal of individuals to Cyprus under the Dublin Regulations as they had previously claimed asylum there. It was argued that the conditions for asylum seekers in Cyprus and the deficiencies in the asylum process amounted to a breach of Article 3 and Article 5 of the European Convention on Human Rights and the EU Charter. We also argued that there was a risk that individuals who were returned to Cyprus under the Dublin Regulations would be sent back to their countries of origin without proper consideration of their asylum claims and at risk of being subjected to further persecution and breach of their human rights. Whilst working on this case, I undertook a fact finding mission to Cyprus, in which I met with lawyers and NGOs and visited a detention centre and a reception centre.


Membership & Accreditations

  • I am accredited as a Level 2 Senior Caseworker under the Law Society’s Immigration and Asylum Accreditation Scheme. I am also DBS checked, enabling me to represent disputed minors. This has provided me with experience in representing clients in initial asylum claims and appeals.
  • I am a member of the Lawyers Christian Fellowship.

Interests


In my spare time, I enjoy reading, travelling, baking and spending time with friends and family. I am also a member of a church, and I am part of the team responsible for organising mid-week meetings.

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