Sarah Keeley
Senior Associate

Sarah leads on business and corporate immigration within Stone King’s specialist Immigration Team.  She is a Senior Solicitor who has practiced exclusively in UK immigration and nationality law since 2005.  Sarah has niche expertise on all aspects of sponsor licencing, global mobility and right to work requirements, and advises individuals on all UK visa categories.  She is a collaborative, pragmatic and solutions-focused lawyer, who enjoys client relationship management within cross-functional advisory teams.  

Professional Experience

Sarah is a thought leader in corporate migration and has extensive experience managing employer sponsor licence applications, ongoing sponsor compliance and HR policy advisory work and audit, and overturning revocations or suspensions.  Sarah advises on all visa categories within the UK’s points based system. Working closely with HR and recruitment and other professionals, Sarah provides immigration support to corporate clients throughout their life cycle, from start-up, to entering new markets or growing to multi-national scale.  Sarah has a proven track record of success managing high-volume immigration accounts for global multi-nationals. She has significant cross-sectoral experience having advised business clients within the financial, legal and professional services, technology, energy, pharmaceutical and manufacturing sectors.

Sarah recently advised an Indian headquartered company with developing UK operations to obtain a sponsor licence, and sponsor its first employee on a remote basis, despite aggressive visa expiry dates

Sarah enjoys the intellectual challenge and personal connection with complex private client immigration matters, including but not limited to HNW clients. Sarah advises private individuals and their advisors on all family, settlement, nationality and European applications to secure residence and ability to work or set up business in the UK.  Sarah has had notable success arguing discretionary application for those with excess UK absences, making late EUSS applications and using covid-19 exemptions, as well as mitigating issues with suitability and previous non-compliance.

Sarah recently supported an international family to relocate to the UK on a permanent basis, despite previous visa refusals.  Sarah conscientiously presented complex financial, medical and educational information to argue for exceptional application under appendix FM, using niche knowledge of both business and education law. 

Sarah recently advised a leading Further Education College client to obtain a licence to sponsor students on below degree level courses.  This included audit and advisory services to ensure that existing College admissions and attendance policies and systems were adapted to ensure immigration and sponsor compliance, and to manage close UKVI scrutiny of the sector.

Sarah studied for a Bachelor of Laws (LLB), where she gained a 2:1 from University of Leeds in 2001.  Sarah went on to undertake post-graduate professional training at Nottingham Trent University, receiving a commendation in the Legal Practice Course from Nottingham Law School  in 2002).  Sarah qualified as a Solicitor following a two year training contract with full-service City law firm CMS Cameron McKenna.

Sarah is a member of Immigration Law Practitioner’s Association, and has previously served as a board member and as co-convenor of the Economic Migration Sub Committee.  

Sarah is a Director for a micro charity, Sustainable Global Gardens, in East Africa.   

Sarah is a lover of the great outdoors and is lucky to live near the Peak District where she spends time swimming, cycling, running, hiking, doing yoga, dragged by her dog.