WHY CHOOSE US
If you want to use a migration agent in Australia to help with your visa application, make sure they are a registered agent with the Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority (MARA). This protects you.
In Australia Lawyers/Solicitors and Migration Agents need to be registered with OMARA in order to give immigration assistant. Australian Lawyers/Solicitors usually study Bachelor of Law or Juris Doctor degree and can take immigration matters to federal courts. A Migration Agent study Graduate Diploma in Migration Law and Practice and cannot take cases to federal court however, can appeal the visa refusals to Administrative Appeals Tribunals.
VISA Aus operates under the Directorship of Ms. Leila Aria (Reypour) who is a Founder and Principle of VISA Aus. Leila is a Solicitor/Lawyer of Supreme Court of Queensland and High Court of Australia and have been a registered migration agent with OMARA since 2008 and New Zealand Immigration advisor since 2015.
If you want to use a migration agent in Australia to help with your visa application, make sure they are either Lawyers/Solicitors or Migration Agents and registered with the Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority (OMARA). This protects you.
It is a serious offence for anyone who is not a registered migration agent to give immigration assistance in Australia. The penalty can be up to 10 years of imprisonment.
Registration of an agent gives you protection and helps ensure people working with migration agents who are aware of current laws and procedures and give correct advice.
A migration agent who is registered with OMARA and a lawyer who is admitted to their State and Territory are professionals who can help you with your immigration matters.
A registered migration agent is required to be registered with OMARA to give immigration assistance.
A lawyer must be admitted to the court in their State and Territory and obtain practising certificate as a Solicitor or Barrister.
Both lawyers and registered migration agents are qualified to perform immigration work and lodge visa applications and appeals to Administrative Appeals Tribunals (AAT). However, only lawyers can take the matter to the Federal Courts. The Hierarchy of the appeals for immigration is as such that if a visa is refused or cancelled, you need to first appeal to AAT and if the appeal is not successful you can take the matter to federal courts with the help of a lawyer.
Both lawyers and migration agents need to be registered with the Office of Migration Agents Registration Authority (OMARA) to perform immigration work.
For more information about OMARA, please click here.
Registered Migration Agents are bound by a Code of Conduct and are required to meet high professional and ethical standards and;
- must have a good and up-to-date knowledge of Australia’s immigration law and procedures
- are bound to act in your legitimate interests and give you accurate advice through Code of Conduct
- must manage your money in a separate account until services are provided, and have their accounts audited from time to time
- must keep proper client records for seven years.
- are authorised to represent you and must tell you about your visa outcome in a timely manner
The Lawyers and Barrister has a slightly higher ethical standard than Migration Agents and their professional legal body will determine this in their state and territory. For example in Queensland Lawyers’ professional body is Queensland Law Society and Barristers’ professional body is the Queensland Bar Association.
All Lawyers and Registered Migration Agents must:
- Have undergone an Australian Federal Police check;
- Hold a current Australian Legal practicing certificate or have completed (and passed) a Graduate Certificate in Australian Migration Law and Practice at an Australian University;
- Be an Australian citizen or an Australian permanent resident;
- Have a good command of English;
- Maintain a professional library and up to date professional knowledge;
- Complete ongoing professional training apply for re-registration as a Migration Agent each year;
- Hold a minimum amount of professional indemnity insurance;
- manage your money in a separate account until services are provided, and have their accounts audited from time to time; and
- Abide to act in your legitimate interests and give you accurate advice through a Code of Conduct.
Using a registered migration agent has many benefits. Not using one has many risks, an unregistered Migration agent:
- might have only limited knowledge of Australia’s immigration law and procedures
- might give incorrect advice, make false promises, or try to take advantage of your situation
- might not handle your money the right way (some have taken large amounts of cash from their clients)
- might not keep proper files and misplace your important documents, including original ones
- make false claims about your chances of success and have no obligation to tell you about your visa outcome
For more information about Migration Agents, please go to MARA website.
The Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority (MARA) is the regulatory body that ensures only fit and proper persons are approved as registered migration agents and investigates complaints against agents. It is a discrete office attached to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.
Choosing a Migration Agent or a Lawyer
- All Lawyers and Registered Migration Agents have unique Migration Agents Registration Number (MARN). The first digit of their MARA number determines the year the agent is registered with MARA.
- You can check if a person is registered by searching for their MARN on the MARA website.
- Lawyers and education agents need to be registered before they can give you immigration assistance in Australia.
- No person can guarantee you will get a visa –even if the person is a registered migration agent.
- Unless exempt, it is illegal for anyone to give immigration advice in Australia if they are not registered with the Authority.
Tips and hints when using a migration agent
Your agent must:
- be honest with you about your chances of securing a visa and cannot guarantee your application will be successful or faster processing of your application.
- gives you a copy of the Consumer Guide. once they have agreed to do work for you.
- provide you with a written statement — before starting work — of the services to be provided, the estimated fees and other costs.
- return any documents that belong to you within 7 days after you have asked.
- keep you informed about the progress of your application and any changes that may affect it.
- be contactable during business hours and tell you if they change their contact details.
- act within the law, your best interests and protect your privacy.
- declare any interest they have that may affect your application and not act for you if there is a conflict.
- charge a reasonable fee and, if you pay in advance, keep this in a separate bank account.
- provide you with an invoice listing the actual services completed and the amount payable.
- provide timely and correct advice and tell you in writing about the result of your application as soon as possible.
If you experience a problem with your registered migration agent you should try and resolve it with them but you can also complain to the MARA.
For more information about your rights, please click here.
The "Migration Agents Code of Conduct" is published by the Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority, the Australian Government body established to regulate the conduct of migration advice professionals.
The Migration Agents Code of Conduct sets out the professional rules that a migration agent must follow in dealing with clients. It contains a clear statement of what you can expect from your migration agent in terms of work practices and our professional obligations to you. Further, if you are not happy with the work of your migration agent the Migration Agents Code of Conduct sets out how you can make a formal complaint to the Australian Government.
For more information on the activities and role of the MARA please Click Here.
Migration Agents obligations under the Code?
Under the Code a Migration Agent has a range of obligations covering:
- Migration Agents interactions with their clients
- Migration Agent’s fees and charges, record keeping and financial management
- Migration Agent’s responsibilities toward other agents
- any employees the Migration Agent may have
- the requirement that Migration Agent respond if a complaint is made against them
Another obligation is that Migration Agents needs to prominently display the Code in their office, client’s waiting area. They must also provide clients with a copy of it to keep if they ask for one.
Also it is requirement of MARA that the link to Code of Conduct and Agent’s Registration Number must appear on the first page of the Registered Migration Agent’s website.
When choosing a migration agent you need to pay special attention to the way the agent has advertised. Under the Code of Conduct a Registered Migration Agent where advertising:
- Must not guarantee the success of an application
- Include in the advertisement the words “Migration Agents Registration Number” or “MARN”, followed by the agent’s individual registration number even if the advertisement is in another language.
- Must not use some terms/words to imply the existence of a relationship with the Department or the government authorities such as the words ‘we are Department registered’ or ‘Australian Government registered’.
Regulation of the Migration Advice Profession
The document "Consumer Guide" contains a summary of what you need to know about the migration advice industry in Australia. It is shorter than the MARA Code of Conduct, and summarises the basic information about the role of the profession.
To obtain a copy of Consumer Guide, please click here.
We offer a free personal online assessment of your eligibility to migrate to Australia. Unlike many generic online assessments, your enquiry is dealt with by a real person & not a computerised automated response. We assess your eligibility against the Migration law and regulation and provide a free face to face or phone consultation and advise the best visa option in your circumstances.
A fixed competitive fee will be sent along with the initial advice with no hidden costs.
We offer advice on the following services:
- Migration and/or temporary visas to Australia
- The visa application process for Australia
- The requirements for your visa type
- Appeals to the Migration Review Tribunal
- Australian Citizenship
Our role as migration professionals is to:
- provide advice of your legal rights under the Migration Act 1958,
- assess your eligibility against Migration Law and Regulations and advice the best possible visa options,
- provide frank and candid advice regarding the prospects of success of your application,
- prepare the best possible applications/submissions to ensure you receive your visa quickly and without stress,
- lodging your visa application in accordance with legislative requirements,
- arranging sponsorship/nomination by State or Territory Government where appropriate,
- managing the application from start to finish, keeping you updated regularly throughout the visa decision,
- advise you of any changes to the law or departmental policy requirements affecting the visa application during the processing of the application,
- provide post grant migration advice regarding visa condition and requirement,
- provide settlement services after migration if needed.
We specialise in all Visa categories including:
- General Skilled Migration
- Student Graduate Visas
- Student Visas
- Business Skills Migration
- Family Migration
- Partner Visas
- Parent Migration
- Business Visas
- Employer Sponsored Visas
- Tourist Visas