Bilaal Shabbir  |  Accredited Paralegal

Bilaal joined MBS Solicitors in 2013. He is an Accredited Paralegal (in family law) with the Law Society of Scotland. He has extensive experience in immigration law, commercial dispute resolution and professional discipline.

Bilaal is Head of the Court of Session department and has a keen interest in Judicial Review matters. He regularly acts as Edinburgh Agent in the Court of Session for firms across Scotland, especially in respect of attempted last minute removals from the UK. He also regularly appears in the First-Tier Tribunal and Upper Tribunal (Immigration & Asylum Chamber) in Scotland, England and Northern Ireland in his own right and together with instructing solicitors and Counsel.

Bilaal regularly acts as a consultant to practitioners across the UK in respect of complex immigration law matters.

His breadth of experience and meticulous attention to detail allows him to provide practical and innovative solutions to clients requiring advice on complex and intertwined issues and offer effective representation.

He regularly prepares immigration applications in terms of Appendix FM, European Law and the European Convention on Human Rights often involving complex and protracted circumstances. He is adept at presenting attractive oral and written submissions. He is the winner of the 2015 and 2016 Internal Mooting Competition by Edinburgh Napier University and was a member of the last Scottish team in the National Mooting Competition.

Examples of Bilaal’s work in recent years includes:

Challenging the UK Government’s policy on removing family members of EU nationals during the appeals process; challenging a University’s policy on the exclusion of students on the grounds of alleged unsatisfactory academic progress; and identifying lacunas in the Ordinary Cause Rules relating to disclosure of matrimonial property in family actions in the Sheriff Court.

Examples of Bilaal’s ongoing work includes:

Judicial Review of a local authority’s refusal to house children of persons with no right to remain in the UK; seeking reduction and suspension of a Court Decree for payment on the grounds of procedural unfairness in a construction dispute; and challenging the enforceability of bank guarantees signed under induced misrepresentation.

Bilaal has also written for the Law Society of Scotland Journal discussing the effects of the Immigration Act 2016. He sits on the Immigration and Asylum Committee and the Rights of Audience Committee of the Law Society of Scotland. He has drafted calls for written evidence on behalf of the Law Society of Scotland in relation to Destitution, Asylum and Insecure Immigration Status’ in Scotland and Immigration Detention.

Bilaal is also a regular contributor to Free Movement, one of the UK’s leading immigration and asylum blogs. In September 2017, he organised, hosted and presented at one of the largest immigration conferences ever in Scotland focusing on the impact on immigration law post-Brexit. The event was a huge success with over 100 attendees from across the UK.

In June 2017, he presented a Petition in the European Parliament on how the UK government can amend the current administrative process to allow EU nationals to more easily obtain a right of residence in the interim period leading up to Brexit. He is currently instructed in an appeal to the UK Supreme Court challenging the UK Government’s approach in considering ‘Surinder Singh‘ applications.

He is an active member of the Scottish Young Lawyers Association, the Scottish Child Law Centre, the Scottish Ethnic Minority Lawyers Association (SEMLA) and the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.

Bilaal has been admitted as a Student Member of the Society of Writers to Her Majesty’s Signet and has won the Scottish Paralegal Association 2016 Highly Commended Category in Scotland. He was shortlisted for Paralegal of the Year 2017 by the Scottish Legal Awards and won the same category at the Scottish Legal Awards 2018.

He is fluent in Punjabi and Urdu.