A leading Immigration lawyer has urged the community to be wary of rule changes which are due to come into force over the coming year.

Samarah Sulaman, managing director of UK Immigrations Solutions Ltd and East2West Visa Services, has opened her Lancashire branch in Blackburn.

Samarah said: “On Friday, new immigration rules will be implemented which will narrow existing rules and will close other routes which immigrants take advantage of.

“The new rules will limit how long a student can be in the UK, work and study. This will automatically have a knock-on effect of individuals applying for ILR under the 10 year Rule.”

She says it is important for people to be aware of how new laws which could affects them.

“The government has highlighted that they want to reduce the immigration to the UK. “To implement this, they are closing categories and making other categories more difficult for immigrants to attain.

“The latest proposed closure of ‘dependent relative category’ will impact the Lancashire community significantly.

“So many members of the community rely on this Rule to bring their elderly mothers, fathers, grandparents, uncles and aunts to the UK, where they can care for them. "If the Rule is closed, what will happen to the elderly relatives who remain in the sub-continent?”

“The community also needs to understand that it is now becoming increasingly more difficult to obtain Indefinite Leave to Remain, therefore, they should seek advice from the outset of the entry to the UK to ensure that they do not miss the opportunity to gain the ILR.

“Once the visa is granted from abroad, they should be collecting documentary evidence from their entry to the UK to make sure they are fully aware of the immigration requirements.

“Another issue which will impact individuals extension applications, is the requirement to pass English language and Life in the UK Test. “It is now not enough to get the qualification from abroad and not focus on reading, writing and speaking English when the immigrant is in the UK, as a failure to learn the local language will result in the individual not being able to apply for ILR.

“This would mean the individual would remain subject to immigration until his/her language skills are sufficient. It is better to be aware of this and plan from the outset and begin to learn and study as soon as possible after arrival.”

Samarah was born and brought up in Darwen and has offices offices in Mirpur, Pakistan, Rotherham, Birmingham and London.

Her new offices are based on Regent Street in Blackburn.