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Immigration & Global Mobility

Our team of immigration lawyers support public and private sector clients on the full suite of Global Mobility Consultation, Business Immigration, Employee Transfers, Investor Immigration and Family Immigration matters.

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We understand that the world is increasingly becoming more interconnected with international organizations having a global reach that has necessitated the constant migration of its workforce.

Immigration & Global Mobility

International organizations must bear in mind and appreciate the legal issues presented by the increased interconnectivity and global mobility, which issues may arise from a migrating workforce, to setting up of foreign operations, as well as ensuing taxation and legal issues. Legal relocation and mobility support form a critical component beyond the logistical concerns and cultural support to be accorded to a migrating workforce. This must therefore be considered to ensure seamless transition of employees from one geographical area to another in a manner that helps the affected persons and companies navigate the terrain with ease, all while ensuring no party is left exposed or vulnerable when it comes to adherence to the relevant laws

Whatever the requirements, we seamlessly work with clients to help them navigate the immigration law hurdles and conditions and ensure compliance with the Kenya Citizenship and Immigration Act (Act No. 12 of 2011) and regulations made thereunder to avoid any penalty fees or legal action.

Besides the foregoing, we assist those who want to acquire Kenyan Citizenship or register as dual citizens of Kenya and any other country. In addition, we help clients navigate immigration issues relating to refugee or asylum status in Kenya and the wider East Africa region.


  2. Global mobility has become increasingly important as companies move employees from one jurisdiction to another as necessitated by their widespread presence across the globe. Our team understands that having a worldwide work force requires a fair amount of complex immigration, tax, compliance and strategic aspects. Our global mobility consultants specialize in implementing global assignments to businesses and their employees by offering the following services:

    1. Advising businesses on local immigration regulations and relocation logistics;
    2. Advising on issues relating to foreign contracts of employment and the applicable local labour laws;
    3. Advising on taxation of employees and business in light of applicable bi-lateral agreements and other statutory provisions on taxation;
    4. advising in relation to ongoing commercial matters, including on the drafting and negotiation of key contracts with suppliers and customers, the protection of intellectual property or on data protection/compliance issues.
    5. Assisting businesses connect with consulates or embassies;
    6. We assist clients to process ALL CATEGORIES OF WORK PERMITS that is Class A work permit (Mining), Class B (Investment in Agriculture and Animal Husbandry), Class C (Prescribed/regulated professions ), Class D (Employment), Class G (General Investment), Class F (Investment in Manufacturing Industry), Class K (Ordinary Residents/Retirees) and Class M (Refugees)
    7. We assist clients to process ALL CATEGORIES OF PASSES ; ie Kenya Dependent’s pass, Special Passes, Research Passes Internship passes and Student Passes
    8. We assist in OBTAINING VISAS to enable entry to Kenya for whatever reasons such as Business Visas, Tourist Visas , Multiple Journey Visa, East African Visa and any other single entry visa for any other reasons e.g family, medical and other reasons.
    9. Formulating essential policies in compliance with the applicable law e.g. data protection policy, sexual harassment policy etc.; and
    10. Providing ongoing global mobility support.

    1. Our immigration lawyers are dedicated to offering progressive expert legal advice and solutions on all Corporate/Business immigration matters, including:

      1. Advisory to various business sectors such as start-ups, SMEs, multi-national corporations etc. We assist in obtaining relevant immigration work permits and all other essential immigration compliance requirements;
      2. Advisory to investors of various categories and assisting with procurement of the requisite investors' work permits. We consider the nature of the investment/operations in offering our services and constantly draw on the Kenya Investment Authority's and other agencies' offerings to advise businesses on the soundest investment opportunities in Kenya;
      3. Advisory on mining and natural resources law to foreign investors who wish to engage in the mining sector. We assist in liaising with relevant government agencies to issue authorisation licenses and procure requisite immigration work permits;
      4. Obtaining the relevant research and students' passes/E-visas on behalf of academic institutions;
      5. Undertaking due diligence guidance regarding the impact of immigration regulations and requirements on corporate restructuring (including mergers and acquisitions), divestitures, and reductions in force;
      6. Conducting immigration audits to ensure that organisations are and remain compliant with the immigration requirements and regulations;
      7. Tax advisory services;
      8. Supporting human resource functions of organisations on a variety of employment-related immigration issues. For example, we procure the requisite visa and work authorisation permits for both Kenya and regional personnel relocating from and into Kenya and the East African region. Such personnel include professionals, managers, executives and essential workers;
      9. Advisory on the procedural requirements for the revocation of expatriate employees' work permits;
      10. Periodic opinions on issues affecting immigration statuses to involved parties; and
      11. Representing any parties aggrieved with the decisions of the Cabinet Secretary for the Ministry of Interior Coordination of Government or any office within the immigration department.

    1. We understand that unlike other ordinary businesses/pro- fessions, regulated professions require additional regulatory requirements from relevant regulatory bodies. As such, we provide detailed legal advice and solutions to foreigners who are members of prescribed/ regulated professions and possess prescribed qualifications under the Eighth schedule of The Kenya Citizenship and Immigration Regulations, 2012.

      Our Immigration Lawyers possess multi-disciplinary exper- tise to assist the following professionals, among others, with the following services;

    2. Scientists:
      1. general legal advisory;
      2. assistance in procuring relevant clearances from
      3. government bodies; assistance in establishing the appropriate organi- sation to run scientific activities/research e.g.
      4. establishment of a charitable trust for scientific purposes; and assistance in procuring the relevant immigration work permits.
    3. Medical professions:
      1. legal advisory on the aspects of Health Law and policies in Kenya applicable to the medical profession;
      2. assistance in obtaining the relevant clearances from the respective regulatory bodies; and
      3. assistance in obtaining the relevant immigration work permits.
    4. Engineers:
      1. general legal advisory;
      2. assistance in procuring relevant clearances from
      3. the Engineers Board of Kenya; advisory on the appropriate business type to carry
      4. out engineering services in Kenya; and assistance in obtaining the relevant immigration work permits.
    5. Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Experts:
      1. general legal advisory;
      2. advisory on data protection and intellectual property (IP) in Kenya;
      3. assistance in procuring relevant clearances from the ICT Authority body of Kenya;
      4. advisory on the appropriate business type to carry ICT-related services in Kenya; and
      5. assistance in obtaining the relevant immigration work permits;
    6. Architects /Quantity surveyors:
      1. general legal advisory; and
      2. assistance in obtaining the relevant immigration work permits.

  6. We offer comprehensive immigration law advisory services to foreign nationals who wish to engage in charitable, non-profitable or religious activities in Kenya for the benefit of the general public, including:

    1. Advisory on and assisting organisations with lawfully constituting in Kenya, either as a company limited by guarantee, a local or international public benefit organisation or a branch thereof, a charitable trust or a society;
    2. Procuring respective immigration work/resident permits to enable foreign nationals to engage directly in charities and not-for-profit activities in Kenya;
    3. Procuring work permits for the Ministers of Religion to enable them to run a church, missionary or any other religious-related activi- ties;
    4. Procuring recommendation letters from the Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO) Coordination Board for the issuance of work permits to foreign volunteers/missionaries and obtaining other relevant clearances from key government agencies;
    5. Undertaking donor funding assessments to determine compliance with the regulatory framework in order to meet the threshold for attracting donation funds;
    6. Obtaining special passes for persons who wish to engage in short-term consultancy activities/ services which are charitable/non -profitable or religious; and
    7. Advisory concerning long-term residence status.

  8. We understand the pressure that comes with relocating to a new country. We therefore have a vibrant individual and family immigration docket that assists individuals to relocate and settle in Kenya together with their families. In this regard, we assist the following individuals;

    1. Foreign investors looking to invest and carry on business in Kenya who require investor permits as well as dependent and student passes for their family members;
    2. Foreign skilled professionals who require relevant work permits as well as dependent and student passes for their family members;
    3. Extended Family Members with whom individuals wish to migrate and settle within Kenya. This mainly includes elderly parents, guardians or any other person of an extended family member that may be deemed appropriate; and
    4. Foreign citizens looking to marry Kenyan citizens. We also assist with applications for the following documents:
      1. Retirements resident permits (Ordinary Residents) - we regularly assist foreigners and expatri- ate employees who intend to settle, relocate in Kenya together with their families upon retirement, and acquire retirement permits or permanent residence to enable them to. Additionally, we offer tax advisory services concerning their pension/annuities, among other legal advisory services;
      2. Entry E-Visas - including business visas and preparing the individual invitation letters, Tourist/Family visits/- Medical Reasons etc. visas as well as multiple entry visas;
      3. Immigration documents or children of school-going age to enable them to access educational facilities; and
      4. Permanent Residence status - We assist individuals who are lawful residents in Kenya to procure permanent residence status upon meeting all the mandatory requirements.

  10. Our team understands that certain circumstances require foreigners to settle permanently in Kenya. We are dedicated to assisting such individuals obtain Kenyan Citizenship by providing the following services:

    1. Application for Kenyan Citizenship we assist individuals who are lawfully residing in Kenya under a valid work permit to procure Kenyan citizenship upon attaining the prescribed duration of residence of seven (7) years in the country and satisfying all the other critical mandatory requirements;
    2. Application of Kenyan Citizenship on the basis of Marriage we assist non-Kenyan spouses who have been married to a Kenyan Citizen for a period of seven (7) years as well as non-Kenyan widowers/widows of Kenyan Citizens to apply for Kenyan citizenship upon meeting all the mandatory requirements. In liaison with our Wealth & Private Client lawyers, we also offer such individuals detailed advice on Estate Planning, and advisory on and assistance with registration of foreign marriages and marriages between Kenyan and non- Kenyans;
    3. Regaining of Kenyan Citizenship - we assist with the regaining of Kenyan citizenship;
    4. Dual Citizenship/Nationality we assist in offering legal advice on the underlying factors of dual citizenship/nationality and applications for dual citizenship; and
    5. Citizenship for Children/Adopted Children - in liaison with our Family Law lawyers, we offer comprehensive legal advisory on adoption procedures of non-Kenyan children by Kenyan citizens and procuring citizenship for children.

  12. When relocating to Kenya, an individual may encounter challenges with applications that may result in litigious proceedings. Our team of Immigration Lawyers will diligently assist you with the following;

    1. Judicial Review/Appeals - this in instances where an immigration application such as a work permit application, citizenship etc. has been declined by an immigration officer; and
    2. Challenging Deportation orders in Court - we prepare pleadings and represent clients in court to challenge such orders.

  14. Our Immigration Lawyers are aware that millions of people worldwide have been forced to leave their home country due to persecution and systematic discrimination, among other reasons. Such individuals can seek international protection under the provisions of the 1951 Refugee Convention and its 1967 protocol, which has been ratified in Kenya under the Constitution of Kenya 2010.

    Our immigration lawyers offer the following services;

    1. Legal representation to persons presenting their claims for refugee status to the Commissioner for Refugee Affairs or persons whose refugee status has been cancelled/ revoked;
    2. Ensuring that refugee/asylum seekers and their families have been granted the respective identification civil registration documents to enable them to access fundamental rights under the applicable law.;
    3. Upon successful grant of refugee status, assisting with applications for the appropriate immigration work permit to enable a refugee and any of the spouses to engage in gainful employment, business or profession;
    4. Assisting refugees who wish to access education facilities to procure the proper immigration student pass/passes where applicable to enable them to access education facilities;
    5. Comprehensive legal advisory on resettlement procedures of a refugee to a Third-Party State; and
    6. Assisting with appeals and judicial reviews against refusals of refugee applications as well as challenging denials of asylum.

Related blogs & news

Issue 1 - April 2019

On 10" June this year (2019), we shall be celebrating our 5th year since inception. During these past years, our firm has grown from an initial team of two to a team of about forty, two thirds of whom are advocates. ...

Huduma Number is here

Attached, is information on the recently launched "HUDUMA NAMBA" for your reference....

CM Advocates at 5

We would like to thank you for your business throughout the past years. You have been critical to our integral growth and success in our first 5 years, and I look forward to working with you in the coming years....

Issue 2 - July 2019

CM Advocates LLP marks a major milestone in its journey. As we turn 5 this June, in line with its vision - To be the leading leagal service provider in East African Community......

Your Immigration Matters: Why You Need Professional Guidance

For a long time, Kenya has lacked a comprehensive personal data protection legislation which has been quite necessary in this age of digital use and access. This has exposed citizens to the risk of their personal data being misused. ...

Other Practice Areas

Anti-bribery & Anti-corruption

Our team is well versed in providing excellent strategic advice, which often results in cases being discontinued or in not-guilty verdicts at trial.

Aviation Law

CM Advocates is well versed in handling diverse legal and commercial matters related to aviation including litigation, corporate work, employment contracts, real estate contracts, passenger claims, baggage and freight claims and other related matters.

Capital Markets

Our clients include private companies, public listed companies, funds, investors and government institutions. We advise on all aspects of capital markets transactions.

Commercial / Business Law

Commercial law (also known as business law), which is an omnibus phrase for a range of legal services designed to support businesses in making money from their products and services, is indispensable in everyday business activities.

Constructions & Infrastructure Law

CM Advocates LLP walks with you in your construction journey from the construction project conception, design and planning, project procurement, project finance, project implementation and operation and maintenance

Tax Law Advisory

At CM Advocates, we offer timely, independent, innovative and results-driven tax advisory services.

Non-Compete, Non-solicit and Trade Secrets Practice

Our Non-Compete, Non-Solicit, and Trade Secrets Practice is tailored towards protecting your interests on termination of an employer-employee relation or other contractual engagements.

Wealth & Private Clients

Our Family Law specialists are at the vanguard of family law matters and provide service to both local and international clients. We understand that family issues can be difficult for those involved. Therefore, we approach each case with the openness and care due to such trying issues, offering personalized guidance and assistance.

Real Estate, Banking & Finance

We handle conveyancing and all types of property-related transactions and deals including sales and purchases, leases and licenses, estate planning and administration, real estate venture transactions, construction transactions, change of user and extension of leases and banking security documentation for both local and international clients.

Shipping, Logistics & Admiralty Law

Admiralty or maritime law deals with nautical issues and p1ivate maritime disputes. It is composed of both domestic law on maritime activities and private international law gov-erning the relationships between private parties operating or using ocean-going ships. At CM Advocates, we have a vibrant admiralty and transportation law practice focusing on transactional matters, dispute resolution, legal and regulatory compliance and general mari-time and trucking transactions.

Forensics & Investigations, Risk & Compliance

Working together with our associated forensic audit and corporate investigation company, our aim at CM Advocates LLP (hereinafter “CM Advocates”) is to combine our respective skills and provide our clients with a world-class integrated legal, compliance, forensic and investigative service.

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