"....lauded as an exceptional lawyer"

Chambers UK, A client's guide to the UK legal profession

Elspeth is a Legal Counsel in the immigration team. She is best known for her expertise in the field of European Union free movement of persons, immigration and borders law and practice. She is widely recognised as an expert in her field. 

Elspeth is also a law professor at Queen Mary University of London and has extensive expertise on EU immigration and border control. She regularly teaches lawyers and judges in the EU on issues of EU borders and migration law and acts as an expert for international organisations such as the Council of Europe, UNHCR, and the European Commission and Parliament. 

Elspeth’s career has included providing expertise and assistance to many high net worth individuals as well as companies.  Over the past ten years she has focused in particular on issues of EU free movement of persons, immigration and borders law.  She often provides advice to international organisations and institutions on border and immigration control issues. Recently she assisted the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights' office in developing guidelines on human rights protection in the context of border controls. 

During her career, Elspeth has acted as a special advisor to a House of Lords Sub-Committee on the European Union regarding economic migration. She has participated in numerous consultations of the European Parliament and the Commission on issues of border controls and migration. She has provided expertise regularly to the House of Commons and House of Lords on immigration issues. More recently she has investigated issues relating to personal data collected in the context of border and immigration controls and the individual’s right to privacy.

Elspeth recently assisted the Council of Europe on the preparation of recommendations to the 47 Member States on the treatment on irregularly present migrants which was adopted by the delegates of Council of Europe States in May 2016. 

Elspeth is ranked in Legal 500 UK's 2020 Hall of Fame as a leading individual, being described as "outstanding".  She is listed  in Who's Who Legal as a Thought Leader in Corporate Immigration, 2019.

Associations and societies

  • Co-chair of the ILPA European Working Group
  • Founding member of the EILN
  • Member of the European Commission Expert Committee on Migration


Publications and articles

  • "Free Movement of Person in the European Union" - Butterworths with Denis Martin, London 1996
  • "The Developing Immigration & Asylum Policies of the European Union" - Kluwer Law International 1996, The Hague
  • "The European Court of Justice on the European Convention on Human Rights" - Kluwer Law International 1998, The Hague
  • "Security of Residence for Aliens in Europe" -  K Groenendijk & H Dogan 1998, Strasbourg
  • "Immigration law in the European Community" - Kluwer Law International 2001, The Hague
  • "International Terrorism and EU Immigration, Asylum and Borders Policy: The Unexpected Victims of 11 September 2001" - Kluwer Law International 2003, The Hague
  • "The Face of Securitas: Redefining the Relationship of Security and Foreigners in Europe" - Oxford University Press
  • "Maintaining an independent judiciary in the enlarged EU" - The European Lawyer
  • "Citizens, Immigrants, Terrorists and Others" "The emergence of a European asylum policy"
  • Lawyers Europe, 'Immigration and Trade in Services: The Tale of GATS', co-author with Claire Purdue
  • "Borderline personalities" - The European Lawyer, June 2005


Further information

  • Visiting Professor, Queen Mary University of London
  • Member of the Council of Justice
  • Professor of European Migration Law, Centre for Migration Law - University of Nijmegen, Holland
  • UK expert on the European Network of Academic Experts on Immigration and Asylum (Odysseus)
  • Occasional consultant for the European Commission, The Council of Europe and the International Labour Organisation
  • Lectures extensively on immigration matters throughout Europe
  • In 2016, Elspeth was included in the Fourth Edition of The Best Lawyers in the United Kingdom for Immigration Law - Business


The outstanding Elspeth Guild ...  a European immigration law expert."

Legal 500 2020


Legal 500 2019

Elspeth Guild is ‘brilliant’."

Legal 500 UK, 2017

...continues to be known as a real expert in EEA free movement and European law."

Who's Who Legal, 2017

a super-brain on EU law, with peers singling her out as a 'marvellous resource' for her EU immigration knowledge."

Chambers UK, A Client's Guide to the UK Legal Profession

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