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Paragon Law MD offers advice to start-ups

Tricks of the Trade: Advice from Those Who’ve Made It Big


Paragon Law MD, Thalej Vasishta, has offered his advice to business start-ups via the website.


To view the full text of this article please click here



How to develop a ‘guanxi machine’

Talk to any business person who has done business with China and one word is certain to crop up and divide opinion every time ‘guanxi’. We don’t have a direct translation in English but in its broadest context it means ‘developing personal connections’. The power of guanxi is underestimated by so many businesses I speak with. In the UK we are lucky; we have a solid legal structure and business conventions that near enough everyone sticks to. This means we can parachute into a meeting, flick over our business card and start talking numbers. In China it is not so easy. Business is built around personal relationship. People would rather trade with their friends because they know what to expect. They are cautious about making business deals with new comers because the conventions we are privileged to enjoy in the UK, that of the hand shake and signing of deals, doesn’t carry much weight. In China, the best business is done between friends.

To read the full article by Paragon Law MD, Thalej Vasishta, please click here


Paragon Lawyer quoted in Guardian Article

Deirdre Sheahan, Associate Solicitor and head of the asylum team at Paragon Law has recently been quoted within a leading article in The Guardian examining the plight of Syrian Refugees.


The full article can be read below and highlights the important work done by Deirdre and her team in this complex and challenging area of law.

Click Here For Link


Paragon Law Solicitor in TV Appearance

Paragon Law’s Head of Asylum, Associate Solicitor Deirdre Sheahan has recently appeared as part of a Notts TV program looking at the situation for asylum seekers from Syria.


To view the footage please click here 


Marriages to Foreign Nationals under the Spotlight

The Marriages and Civil Partnerships Regulations 2015 and associated Orders come into effect on 2 March 2015. Many non-UK nationals who are planning to marry in the UK will face tougher checks by the Home Office in an effort to crack down on sham marriages. The new rules will also apply to civil partnerships.

If one of the parties to a proposed marriage or civil partnership is a non-UK/non-EEA national with limited or no status then the proposed marriage or civil partnership will be referred to the Home Office before the ceremony is allowed to take place. Those present in the UK with indefinite leave to remain, EU right of permanent residence or right of abode will not be referred but they must evidence their status adequately when giving notice.

Key points of the new scheme:

  • All couples in the UK planning to marry must now give notice of their intention to do so 28 days before marrying(previously the notice period was 15 days);
  • Non-UK/non-EEA nationals with limited or no status in the UK who give notice to marry or enter into a civil partnership will be referred to the Home Office;
  • Those couples referred to the Home Office may be required to wait 70 daysbefore marrying if a decision is taken to investigate the relationship;
  • Non-UK/non EEA nationals who wish to marry in the Anglican Church will now be required to give noticeat a register office also.
  • EEA nationals (including British citizens) will need to provide specified evidenceof their citizenship to the Anglican Church prior to being married by the church.
  • All non-UK/non-EEA nationals who are not exempt from immigration control will now need to give notice of their marriage at a designated register office (there will be 75 such designated offices nationwide) rather than at the office in the district in which they reside.

Orders are in place which extend the referral and investigation scheme to Scotland and Northern Ireland and transitional arrangements are in place for couples who have given notice prior to 2 March 2015.


Couples who will be subject to referral may wish to seek immigration advice prior to giving notice of their intention to marry.

For further inormation please contact Nigel Smith at or 0115 9644 132.


Nottingham solicitor joins Legal Aid Agency Review Panel

Nottingham solicitor, Mark Lilley-Tams of Immigration law firm Paragon Law has been selected as an Independent Funding Adjudicator of the Legal Aid Agency.

The Government’s Legal Aid Agency makes decisions on whether a legal case merits legal aid funding. Mr Lilley-Tams’ responsibility as an Adjudicator will be to review decisions taken by The Agency on such matters and he will also review decisions of legal representatives who refuse to represent their client’s on legal aid.

Nationally there are currently 26 Adjudicators with specialist immigration and asylum knowledge.

Mr Lilley-Tams, who heads up Paragon Law’s personal immigration department said that “at a time when legal aid cuts have meant that fewer people will qualify for legal representation I see my role as an incredibly important public function which I hope will ensure that those who are entitled to legal aid funding will receive it and therefore ensuring that justice prevails”.


Paragon Law Has Eyes On Growth in 2015

(Left to Right – Emily Bodden-Burton, Wayne Cartlidge, Stewart MacLachlan, Thalej Vasishta and Monica Kainja)


Immigration law firm Paragon Law have recruited 4 new members to their legal team.


Nottingham Law School graduate Emily Bodden-Burton has been awarded the Paragon Law scholarship which means that she will be funded by the firm to complete a part-time 2 year Masters programme in International Human Rights at the University of Nottingham whilst gaining practical work experience and training with Paragon.


Monica Kainja joins Paragon Law from Yorkshire firm Halliday Reeves and Stewart MacLachlan has moved to Nottingham having previously worked as a solicitor with the Legal Services Agency in Scotland.  Both join the firm’s human rights team working primarily with Social Services departments with regards to unaccompanied asylum seeking children and women who have been victims of trafficking and torture.


Ex-armed forces, Wayne Cartlidge after sustaining injuries was funded by the army to complete his Certificate in Personnel Practice and then worked as a Human Resources Manager with the British Armed Forces for 9 years.  He then held a similar role with Notts NHS Trust before working with Dell Inc as a Senior Immigration Analyst for 5 years.  Wayne joins Paragon Law’s corporate immigration department to assist their clients in employing skilled foreign migrants and sponsorship compliance.


Thalej Vasishta, the firm’s Managing Director said that all the new members of the team will add value to the services that Paragon Law offer to their clients.  He said, “I am particularly delighted that after a period of an inertia, the firm is back on track to growth.   We will be advertising further roles shortly both in our legal and support teams”.


A Christmas Message from Paragon Law


Paragon Law MD, Thalej Vasishta, reports on a trade delegation to India:-


Paragon Law – A Top Tier Immigration Law Firm

The latest addition of the Chambers and Partners Directory rankings of the legal profession once again places Paragon Law as a regional heavyweight in immigration law, with 4 of their solicitors listed as leading individuals, with only 3 other firms (Bindmans LLP, Wesley Gryk Solicitors LLP and Wilson Solicitors LLP) based in London having the same number of ranked lawyers.


Paragon Law is particularly recognised for their “impressive expertise” for their work for corporate clients with regards to Tier 2 personnel, international students, educational institutions and personal immigration matters.


Legal Services Director, Kirin Abbas, who heads the teams that work for HR personnel and educational institutions is described as a “standout lawyer” who “is very commercial and has a good team around her”.



Kirin Abbas, Legal Services Director


Thalej Vasishta, the firm’s Managing Director, who works predominantly on inward investment projects and advising large corporations who employ foreign migrants on their HR systems and procedures, has been recognised for his work with international companies that are setting up in the UK and transferring skilled employees.  He is also praised for his outbound advice to businesses that are setting up in India and China.



Thalej Vasishta, Managing Director


Star Associate, Deirdre Sheahan, heads up the firm’s Asylum and Human Rights Department and is recognised for her work on “some of the ground-breaking civil liberties and refugee-related immigration cases of the past few years”.  Deirdre’s team act for a number of Local Authorities who have responsibility for asylum seeking children and consequently her case in the European Court of Human Rights, MA, BT and DA v Secretary of State for the home Department added value to this vulnerable group by confirming that unaccompanied children seeking asylum should have their claims dealt with in the country that they are currently in.


Deirdre Sheahan, Associate


Rising star and Associate, Mark Lilley-Tams, is the firm’s joint head of the personal immigration department who has been recognised as “an experienced and talented practitioner who has been involved in several key cases before the Supreme Court and European Court of Human Rights”.  A particular case of Mark’s that is recognised is R (Rostami) v Secretary of State for the Home Department which was a test case challenging the limitation by which asylum seekers can only work in jobs on the “Shortage Occupation List”. 



Mark Lilley-Tams, Associate


Thalej Vasishta said, “We have established a national and increasingly international reputation for our immigration law work.  I am extremely proud of the lawyers who have been recognised as they are all home grown talent that have been with Paragon Law since they left law school.  However, I am equally proud of the teams that they have head up and in my view we could easily have 2 or 3 of our other lawyers ranked amongst the best in the UK”


Mr Vasishta went on to say, “with 16 lawyers we are one of the largest immigration law teams in the country.  Each of our lawyers specialises in specific areas of immigration law which results in a deeper level of knowledge and ultimately service to our clients.  Ultimately, we are only as good as our clients and the intermediaries that we work with.  It is to them that I would like to ultimately thank for having faith in us and supporting our work over the last decade since we have been in business”