Duncan Lewis Solicitors is proud to announce that Public Law and Immigration Director, Bahar Ata, has been selected as a finalist for the Legal Expert Award at the CILEx National Awards 2018. The awards ceremony will be presented on the 6th September 2018 at the stunning Underglobe, Shakespeare Globe Theatre, London. The CILEx National Awards Ceremony will showcase and celebrate the excellent work, and achievements, of CILEx members and stakeholder partners.
Bahar Ata is a Fellow of the Chartered Institutes of Legal Executives and a Director within the Duncan Lewis Public Law and Immigration Departments. Bahar is a specialist in Public Law with a niche practice in immigration and human rights judicial review claimant matters. She has over 10 years’ experience in representing vulnerable individuals. Representing clients in unlawful detention claims, challenges against the Competent Authority decisions in respect of trafficking matters, age assessment challenges and challenging removals to third countries under Dublin Regulations are some of the areas of her practice. She has extensive experience in representing clients at the High Court, Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. Bahar and her team have a number of ongoing cases challenging the Home Office’s conduct in respect to clients seeking bail and the Home Office’s failure to provide accommodation.
She is the head of Public Law and Immigration in Luton and supervises a team of dedicated lawyers representing the most vulnerable in our society and in just over a year she has expanded her initial team of 3 lawyers to a strong and dedicated team of 20, including 4 trainees and 13 paralegals. Since taking leadership of the Immigration/Public Law Department in Luton it has become the fastest growing office within the firm. She was promoted to lead the Immigration and Public Law Department shortly after qualifying and currently is the only Legal Executive to hold the post of Director within Duncan Lewis.
Since being promoted to Director/Partner level Bahar has been instrumental in setting up the firm’s dedicated immigration bail team where the focus of the team, under Bahar’s leadership, is to represent those detained under immigration powers as well as bring challenges against the Secretary of State for the Home Department for unlawful detention and false imprisonment claims.
Bahar was recognised by the Legal 500 2017 edition as having ‘substantial experience representing clients at the High Court in judicial review cases’. Since being promoted to Director Bahar has been providing regular training within the department and has carried out Judicial Review training and also leads the training for the Level 2 accreditation exam, demonstrating her commitment to support the next generation of lawyers.
The CILEx National Awards 2018 recognises individuals and teams that provide an exemplary service, advising and supporting those seeking access to justice. They celebrate the innovative recruitment and professional development practices that are widening access to a career in the legal profession to a more diverse audience.
The CILEx National Awards acknowledges those who are leading the way in an ever changing, forward thinking, professional legal services sector, whose work closely aligns to CILEx’s mission, vision and values.
Bahar’s nomination had strong competition, with the organisation receiving more than 200 nominations. The independent judging panel commended CILEx on the high calibre of nominees and the quality of nominations received.
“It is an honour to be named as a finalist in the CILEx Legal Expert awards. I am privileged to be working with dedicated lawyers who are all committed in representing the most vulnerable people in our society. I am grateful to Duncan Lewis solicitors for nominating me for this award and for giving me the platform to progress in my career and in providing me with the support to be able to build and train a team of devoted and aspiring lawyers.”