Updates, commentary, training and advice on immigration and asylum law

New OISC code of standards published

As indicated in the recent consultation response, the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC) has now published the new code of standards. It is a criminal offence to give immigration advice unless you are properly regulated and for those who are not practicing solicitors, barristers or Chartered Legal Executives, that usually means needing to be registered with OISC.

The Code of Standards is comprised of nine core Principles derived from the OISC regulatory objectives set out above. The nine Principles permeate our entire regulatory arrangements; you must adhere to the Principles at all times. We believe our set of Principles reflect the universal values we expect all those we regulate to hold.

The Principles are underpinned by specific Codes. The Codes listed under each Principle are not exhaustive. An adviser may breach a Principle without breaching any of the listed Codes if they live up to the letter of the Codes but not the spirit of that Principle. Advisers must not only follow what is written in the Principle but must also adhere to its intention. For example, under Code 3.3 advisers are prohibited from touting for the business of providing immigration advice or services. By using a third party to tout for business the adviser may not have breached the Code but without doubt they would have breached the spirit of the Principle.

The new code of standards will take effect from 1 September 2024.

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Sonia Lenegan

Sonia Lenegan is an experienced immigration, asylum and public law solicitor. She has been practising for over ten years and was previously legal director at the Immigration Law Practitioners' Association and legal and policy director at Rainbow Migration. Sonia is the Editor of Free Movement.


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