What is Accredited Specialist?
The prestigious status of Accredited Specialist is the highest official recognition that a solicitor/lawyer can attain. To obtain this status, a solicitor must pass the rigorous assessments that the Law Society conducts – in communication, problem solving, clients relations, and in the specialist area of law that they are competent in.
An Accredited Specialist is an expert in the lawyer’s area of practice. When you engage an Accredited Specialist in Immigration Law, you work with someone who has an extremely high degree of technical knowledge and is a vastly experienced immigration lawyer. This is vital, especially in complex matters and in situation where you are in the verge of giving up hope – as they may uncover things previously unnoticed.
How Are Accredited Specialists Different Than Other Immigration Lawyers?
To gain status as an Accredited Specialist, a lawyer must have practised law full-time for at least five years and worked in the area of legal specialty for at least three years (apart from passing the highly arduous assessments). They also have to always maintain their level of knowledge and skills at the specialist level.
Accredited Specialist in Immigration Law work across the whole field of immigration. From adversarial matters, compliance, and collaborating with other lawyers. They also often act for and advise Registered Migration Agents (RMAs) and other Immigration Lawyer.
RMAs sanctioned by the Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority (OMARA) are also required to undertake private tuition with Accredited Specialist in Immigration Law
How do I Know if a Lawyer is an Accredited Specialist?
You can identify an Accredited Specialist in few ways.
The most obvious way is from the prestigious seal from the Law Society.
The second method is to check the post-nominal that appears after the lawyer’s name, for example:
Jason Ling, Acc.Spec (Immi Law); or
Kris Ahn, Accredited Specialist (Immigration Law)
The Specialist Accreditation logo and the post-nominal are nationally recognised as ‘mark of excellence’.
The third method is to go to the Law Society website, go to ‘Find a Lawyer’ page, and search for Accredited Specialist in Immigration Law. You will notice that our lawyer, Kris Ahn, is listed on page 1 of the search result and Jason Ling on page 3. They are two out of only 45 Accredited Specialists in Immigration Law in NSW.
Does It Cost More to Engage Accredited Specialist?
Contrary to popular belief, engaging an Accredited Specialist does not necessarily mean you will pay exorbitant fees. If your matter is very complex, it may be more costly than engaging a non-accredited immigration lawyer; however in the long run, it is still more economical in reducing time, problems, and risks of future complications.
There is nothing worse than spending money for something that causes you more problems in the future. In Immigration law, getting it right the first time means everything – small, tiny mistake may cost your entire life.
Therefore, getting it right the first time is extremely important. The level of skills, knowledge, and experience that an Accredited Specialist has make a huge different and impact.