My first experience with Stephane occurred during tragic circumstances. I was detained at Yarl’s Wood detention center, due to a combination of my previous lawyer’s negligence and the HO’s (Home Office's) oversight relating to my application.
A friend with knowledge of people in immigration law managed to secure contacts for me. The following is an excerpt written in one of my personal statements:
“I emailed them all, briefing them on my history and application. It was a Friday afternoon, and I realized that some of them would only respond to me by Monday morning. One of them kept emailing me and responding to me all weekend. He was extremely passionate and absolutely angry on my behalf. He asked for a call, and the O2 mast was down in Bedfordshire that day. I informed him of such, and told him we’d need to stick to emails for the time being. We were emailing all weekend, including one night when he stayed up until 4 am to work on my application. I really appreciated his passion, feeling supported like that was really needed.”
I share this to demonstrate Stephane’s support and genuine passion in helping people. His explanations were clear and direct. My asylum case was very complicated; he was able to break it down and made it very easy to understand the intricacies of what we would be dealing with.
Another excerpt, about a friend’s visit to Yarl’s Wood, exemplifies this:
“I was in a joyous mood, because I found a good immigration lawyer now and trusted him. [My friend] was initially really angry on my behalf, but started relaxing when she observed my relaxed mood and when I described the new lawyer’s work.”
After my release from detention, my mental health suffered dramatically. Not only did Stephane work tirelessly on my case, he also kept checking on me and whether I was getting the emotional support I needed. He urged me to get therapy, which helped massively. This human touch is obviously very important for clients.
My previous lawyer’s negligence and confusing advice lead to a loss of 1 year of my life in immigration limbo, which ended in my detention. With Stephane’s help, I won my case within 2.5 months of being released. The time that passed between my substantive asylum interview and the HO informing us of our success was 5 days. I am certain that this would not have happened without his vast assistance and support throughout this process. I was very comforted with his expertise throughout the process; my only concern was about the HO possibly making further mistakes.
On top of all this, he advised me regarding the HO’s oversight that lead to my detention, and that he thought I would be successful in getting my s.3c reinstated. He did this without any prompting from me, as he found a pending application in my immigration history and told me that he would consult a barrister to look into it. We were successful due to Stephane’s hard work on getting the JR proceedings through. As a result, we also succeeded in our unlawful detention claim against the HO.
Stephane is also truly generous and helpful. His focus is on the people; he is not commercially driven. He is honest, has strong values, and holds himself to high standards. He also helped friends with visa inquiries and advice. One of my friends said of him, “People like him genuinely make me want to be a better person, he has been like an angel from heaven to you.”
Do not hesitate to call Stephane. I could not recommend his deep expertise, >20 years of experience and knowledge highly enough. I have made the mistake of hiring a solicitor without doing the research that I should have done in hindsight. Asylum and immigration law is a very emotional topic for the clients who are forced into this unfortunate position, which is notorious for being scrutinized by the HO; they are infamous for the mistakes they make. Hire a competent expert. You cannot go wrong with Stephane. He and his business partner, Claudia, have been solid rocks of support during this devastating chapter of my life.
I would give them 6 out of 5 stars.