Warwick Vesey Info
Warwick Vesey Criminal Law & Immigration Solicitors in Birmingham: Review
When it comes to criminal law firms in general, the sales pitch text on their websites can essentially be broken down into two categories. They will either sound aggressive talking about 'fighting your corner' and boast about how much winning they do. Or they will sound empathetic, talking about how they can help reduce the stress and trying to negate fears about costs.
Warwick Vesey Solicitors come across as the latter. But unusually for criminal law specialists they also deal with immigration matters - and not just as an extra. They really do sound as though they specialise in both areas of law.
So much so that the eponymous Mr Vesey became the Honourary Legal Advisor to the ATB UK (Association of Thai Businesses in the UK). The firm isn't just one main solicitor with a few juniors helping though. To be honest, when we first visited the site that's how it came across to us due to the minimalist-styled layout and descriptions of only two main solicitors.
We are heavily in favour of 'Team' sections on law firm's websites displaying a run down of the main staff you might be dealing with along with a photo, brief history of experience, and direct contact details for each person. Fortunately more and more firms are discovering how helpful potential clients find this. If a firm does not have these on their site though, you can get some of the information from other sources.
For example, if you visit The Law Society website you can look up firms and see details on the solicitors working there. The page for Warwick Vesey currently lists four solicitors who qualified as solicitors as far back as 1996 and 1999. If you click on each solicitor's name you can also see what case types they specialise in.
Why is that important? Having a specialist can make a huge difference to how quickly, smoothly and successfully your case will be run. Having an experienced specialist is obviously even better. But it's a balance. In our opinion, it's far better to have a solicitor that has done nothing but Criminal Law for the past 10 years, than one who has dealt with everything under the sun for the past 30. One person simply cannot keep up to date with all the changes and nuances of every single area of law. In the same way that the most expert and highly regarded doctors will only focus on one aspect of the body.
The fact The Law Society website only lists 4 lawyers does not make this statement untrue. The Law Society is a voluntary organisation legal professionals can join that provides help and information. It may just be that only 4 of WV's 12 lawyers have signed up to The Law Society. The main organisation your chosen firm must be registered with is the SRA (Solicitors Regulation Authority). Another good resource is The Legal Ombudsman where you can check if any complaints have been registered against the firm you're considering.
Coming back to our initial point about empathy in a firm being preferable, there are a few snippets on the Warwick Vesey site that help illustrate why. First and foremost is this statement:
I'm surprised this isn't pushed right at the top of the front page of their website, as that is exactly what you want to hear when you're scrambling for a firm to contact. Followed closely by:
Legal Aid has been cut and cut and cut over the years so don't be surprised if you don't qualify. The fact they still accept cases funded by Legal Aid is actually more rare than you might think. Couple that with the repeated statements across the firm's website about providing a 1 hour free consultation, and you get the genuine sense this is a caring, experienced and understanding firm. That's what came across to us anyway and why we've added them to our directory to recommend to people.
We had a bit of trouble finding some public reviews of the firm. The usual haunts such as Yell, Yelp, Trustpilot, etc. had nothing. There were only two ratings on Google Reviews, both with no comments just 5 stars. The firm's Facebook page had about a dozen but all related to the firms Immigration work, not anything else:
• "Thank you so much. My case has gone through many solicitors but it was not successful. I could not expect my visa would be granted this time."
• "That was amazing day with me, I was passed for the UK visa. Thank you again"
Many were in foreign languages. All with good ratings of course. Just not much use to someone uni-lingual seeking information on how well people have got on with other case types. Sadly this is true for most law firms though. Most likely because the majority of cases are very personal so the idea of sharing the experience online with strangers is not as compelling as telling everyone about the brilliant toaster you've just bought.
There are a few far lengthier 'testimonials' on the Warwick Vasey website. However our last poll on the subject suggested the percentage of people willing to take notice of a company's own review page wasn't even in the double digits. Hopefully therefore we've been able to provide some extra information you might not have noticed and/or pointed out some resources that can help you generally when seeking legal representation. For a final summing up of the firm:
We will make a quick note on navigation as well. We've obviously linked to the main website above but please note www.warwickvesey.co.uk does not seem to be owned by anyone right now. We checked a few typical spelling variations for 'warick', 'vesy', 'vasey' etc, such as www.warickvesey.com and www.warwickvasey.com but none of them seem to exist either.
As the firm deals in conveyancing we would therefore highly recommend bookmarking the correct site once you're on it to be sure. If you search for news articles on conveyancing scammers you'll find dozens of stories about people accidentally sending all their money to thieves. A solicitor should never send you banking details via email and if you get a call from someone you don't recognise saying they are from the firm, always hang up and call the firm back using the official phone number. Of course, any decent firm should provide you with all these warnings themselves.
General Notes: Usually if Legal Aid is possible we've mentioned it above, but you can always ask. We haven't looked in depth at their recruitment program so are unaware of any job vacancies available. For a career with Warwick Vesey it's best to visit the website (www.warwickvesey.com), check opening hours, and find the correct phone/email contact details. Simply emailing a CV to reception looks lazy. Each law firm's Law Society and/or SRA number should be on their site, usually at the bottom of each page.
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