Focus On

Feds appoint judge to Federal Court

Thursday, April 08, 2021 @ 1:05 PM | By John Chunn

The federal Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that Lobat Sadrehashemi, senior counsel and clinic lead at the Immigration and Refugee Legal Clinic in Vancouver, is appointed a judge of the Federal Court. Justice Sadrehashemi replaces Justice Keith M. Boswell, who retired effective Jan. 29, 2021.

According to the DOJ news release, Justice Sadrehashemi grew up in Alberta after immigrating from Iran with her parents and two older sisters when she was 16 months old. She graduated from the University of Calgary with a degree in international relations before earning her law and master of social work degrees from the combined J.D./MSW program at the University of Toronto in 2005. She was called to the bar of British Columbia in 2006.

Justice Sadrehashemi was senior counsel and the clinic lead at B.C.’s Immigration and Refugee Legal Clinic since its establishment in 2020. The clinic provides legal representation for low-income people with complex immigration and refugee legal matters. Her years of private practice were focused on refugee and immigration litigation, a significant portion of which included legal aid files. She has appeared at all levels of the federal courts, including the Supreme Court of Canada and the various divisions of the Immigration and Refugee Board. She also worked for several years as staff lawyer at Pivot Legal Society, a legal non-profit in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, and as staff lawyer at the B.C. Public Interest Advocacy Centre, working on systemic human rights and regulatory law issues facing low-income people.

From 2017 to 2019, Justice Sadrehashemi was the president of the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers. In 2009-2010, she was chair of the refugee law subsection of the CBA, B.C. branch. She was also a member of the legal committee of West Coast West Coast Legal Education and Action Fund. She has written and presented frequently on issues related to immigration and refugee law, access to justice, child protection and human rights.