Nichola Carter

Head of Immigration at Carter Thomas Solicitors

Co-convenor of the ILPA Yorkshire and North East Working Group

Nichola Carter heads the immigration team at Carter Thomas Solicitors, a firm she founded in 2013. A solicitor with over 20 years experience in the field of immigration law, Nichola advises universities, schools and businesses on a range of sponsor licence related issues and also acts for private clients. 

Nichola is a co-convenor of ILPA’s Yorkshire and North East Working Group. She has been a trustee of ILPA and a co-convenor of its Economic Migration Working Group.

Nichola has taught extensively for ILPA for over 15 years, designed and chairs ILPA’s renowned annual Sponsor Licence Law conference and has been a returning panelist at ILPA’s Conference on Business Immigration in the UK. 

Further information about Nichola can be found on Carter Thomas’ website and LinkedIn.  

Nichola's Past Training

Nichola founded the ILPA Sponsor License Conference in 2018.

The Sponsor Licence Conference provides a space for immigration lawyers across the UK to share experiences and tips on dealing with this complex area of law.

Attendees will be informed about up to date issues in sponsor licensing law and policy and future policy. They will also take away practical ideas about how to deal effectively with complex sponsorship cases in day to day practice. The day will cover issues relating primarily to sponsorship under Tiers 2 & 5 (with some reference to Tier 4).

  • dealing with complex sponsor licence applications;
  • best practice for maintaining a sponsor licence;
  • complex issues relating to applications for migrants and family members;
  • dealing with problems including investigations, suspensions and revocations;
  • case-law review
  • the future system of sponsorship

Often lawyers are asked to step in when things go wrong. What happens to employees when their employer loses his/her licence to sponsor them? Can employers challenge revocation of their licence?  What should they do when a licence is suspended.  Judith Farbey QC and Nichola Carter have acted in these complex and difficult cases.  Their training has a reputation for clarity of explanation and they will guide you through this pressurized and difficult work, helping you to understand the full range of options open to clients.

Sponsorship under the Points Based System has created unprecedented legal and commercial risks. Many organisations that have been subjected to enforcement action have seen their very existence threatened, their management, employees and students distressed and their reputations dissected by the media.  The pressure is on and practitioners who work in this area must equip themselves to face the various challenges such action triggers. The aim of this course is to assist immigration practitioners through the dealing with disaster minefield. Whilst we will cover the rules and practice relating to all tiers of sponsor, the majority of the case law to date relates to Tier 4 sponsors. Attendees should be prepared for a large part of the course to cover general sponsor and Tier 4 related sponsor issues rather then Tier 2 sponsor issues.

Tutors: Sophie Barrett-Brown, Laura Devine Immigration and Nichola Carter, Carter Thomas Solicitors

This course aims to arm practitioners with everything they need to know about the changes to be introduced on 6 April 2011 and analyse the potential pitfalls and strategic solutions. Topics to be covered include permanent caps and criteria changes for Tier 2 General and Intra-Company Transfers; changes to Tier 1 (General), Tier 1 (Entrepreneur and Investor) and the fate of Tier 1 (Post Study Worker); the new Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) route and transitional arrangements. Sophie Barrett-Brown, Chair of ILPA will provide tips and practical solutions. An essential update for all practitioners. Don’t sit alone trying to make sense of it all – share your concerns and ideas with your peers and we shall all achieve a better understanding more quickly.
The forthcoming changes greatly affect Tier 2 sponsorship but also affect Tier 1.

Tutors: Nichola Carter, Carter Thomas and Joe Middleton, Doughty Street Chambers

By the end of the session attendees will be informed as to the most complex areas of sponsor licensing in law and in policy including an update of the case law.  The session will provide lots of practical tips and will cover issues relating primarily to Tier 2 sponsors (with some reference to Tier 4).

  • The legal framework
  • Complex areas of sponsorship and problem solving
  • Handling UKVI compliance visits
  • Dealing with suspensions and revocations
  • Relevant illegal working considerations
  • Judicial review, interim relief and other redress
  • Case law to date

This course returns for a third year due to popular demand, to provide a detailed update and review of study and work related sponsorship.  At the forefront of this field, Judith Farbey QC and Nichola Carter set sponsorship within its wider legal context, including challenges to negative decisions in courts and tribunals, the role of the Human Rights Act 1998, the developing body of caselaw and how sponsorship interplays with other areas of law.  The course will examine the legal powers of the UK Border Agency and its officers particularly in relation to investigations and action to suspend or revoke a licence.  In addition it will review the sponsorship guides and the ad hoc policy guidance issued over the years, consider UK Border Agency site visits to sponsors, and deal with the ramifications of sponsor non-compliance.  Judith Farbey QC and Nichola Carter have a wealth of experience in advising and litigating on sponsorship issues. They are known to fellow members of ILPA’s Economic Migration subcommittee for their knowledge and creative work in this area.

Dealing with Disaster: sponsor licence revocations, suspensions and associated problems

Excellent session and speakers with lots of useful experiences shared – thank you.

Dealing with Disaster: sponsor licence revocations, suspensions and associated problems

Brilliant course. Superb speakers, very clearly presented material and useful practical insights.