About Us

Immigration and citizenship statues are complex and dynamic functions of law that affect the lives of people in very real ways. A keen understanding of the Acts, Regulations, Amendments and immigration jurisprudence regulating these processes is crucial to ensure not only favourable and/or legally sound outcomes, but perhaps more importantly, that your rights as foreigners and persons in South Africa are protected.

The firm was founded, and is currently headed, by the passionate Stefanie de Saude Darbandi who is also a duly admitted and practicing Notary Public (Notary Publics are public functionaries admitted and authorised by the High Court of South Africa to draw and attest contracts and other documents and to authenticate certain documentation and public acts). It is unfortunately not in an applicant’s interest to deal directly with the functionaries responsible for processing status related matters. We accordingly offer a full range of legal immigration and citizenship services, from the preparation of applications to strategic planning and the implementation of coordinated court actions.

We believe our clients deserve nothing less than the very best legal counsel when it comes to matters that affect their lives and livelihoods in the most acute way. Working with a legal team that understands and appreciates the intricacies of the system will provide you with the best possible chance of a lawfully decided application. We are personally committed to service delivery and do our level best to meet and exceed the expectations of our clients.

Stefanie De Saude Darbandi

As one of the country’s foremost immigration law experts, Stefanie de Saude Darbandi is a thought leader in this complex industry and a veritable champion of human rights. Having witnessed first-hand how damaging the immigration process can be when her father emigrated to South Africa during her youth, Stefanie made a personal choice to specialise in immigration law and contribute to a more just and equitable legal environment for immigrants.  Over the years, her work has evolved to a powerful form of legal activism that positions immigration and residency as constitutional matters, not purely administrative ones.

Read More

Immigration has become one of the leading political issues for countries around the world. Thousands of vulnerable people are met with aggressive anti-immigration policies and measures – including wrenching children away from their parents and putting them in internment camps – which is a tragic failure of the principles of justice and human rights.

As an expert in her field, Stefanie is regularly called upon by parastatals, corporate entities, individuals and immigration service providers (including agents and lawyers) to address the most challenging matters in these fields as a result of her deep understanding of, and training in, immigration, citizenship, constitutional law and the interpretation of statues. As the founder of De Saude Darbandi Attorneys, she applies her experience and passion for the equitable distribution of justice in the service of a broad range of corporate, private and pro bono clients, and her activism has led to changes in the laws governing immigration and residency in South Africa, essentially promoting access to justice for those born in South Africa, as well as those who want to make the country their home.

Stefanie exhibits true understanding and empathy for her clients, and her work has resulted in a series of court cases challenging Home Affairs officials to fulfil their constitutional mandate and expedite the delivery of justice. Victory in such cases has also led to court orders forcing Home Affairs to revise their application of our laws and regulations in some cases, and comply with legal principles that are already established in others. She has effected changes in legislation and has mobilised various public offices, including the Public Protector, in her support, reinforcing her commitment to the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act and the basic tenets of our fundamental human rights as enshrined in the South African Bill of Rights.

Stefanie’s compassion and selflessness is evident in all aspects of her life. She is actively involved in the lives of many underprivileged persons and communities, using her voice to obtain justice and effect change where it is most needed.