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Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Choosing a migration lawyer

I have been receiving a very high volume of emails requesting help regarding visa migration to Australia.

Certain people have also offered to pay me for my services. I want to inform all my readers that I am not a registered migration agent and the advice I provide on this blog is free of charge. This doesn't mean that what I am telling you is wrong. The fact that I am not a registered migration agent/lawyer means that I cannot charge you for providing legal services or any advice on this blog.

Warning

There are lots of scams going on in the market where unregistered, non-professional people posing as lawyers rip off people by charging them high legal fees. There is a strict penalty for such crimes and the person involved can face criminal charges.


How to chose a migration lawyer/agent?


The first step you should take in choosing your lawyer agent is to confirm whether he/she is registered with the Migration Agents Registration Authority, MARA.


Please note that migration agents outside Australia are not required by Australian law to be certified from MARA. However, any one providing migration services, inside Australia is required by law to be a certified MARA migration agent. So its up to you to chose a MARA qualified migration agent or to chose a non-qualified MARA agent.

All registered MARA migration agents have a registration number. If you want to hire a lawyer, agent, You should ask for your lawyers/agents MARA registration number. You should ask for your lawyers/agents MARA registration number.

The authenticity of that registration number can be confirmed by checking it from the online database provided on the website of MARA.

Your agent/lawyer/consultant of the firm should be a registered Migration Agent under Australian Government Legislation. This legislation requires Registered Migration Agents to demonstrate that they are of good character and demonstrate competence in Australia's immigration law. Registered Agents must operate in accordance with a detailed Code of Conduct. You can also have a look at the Information on the Regulation Migration Advice Professional (IRMAP)


What are the benefits of hiring a MARA registered lawyer?


The greatest benefit a customer has while hiring a MARA registered lawyer/agent is that you can legally sue your lawyer/agent by lodging a complaint with MARA. If you do not hire a registered migration agent, you will not be able to legally sue him in Australia. It doesn't matter whether you yourself live in India or Brazil. Sending an email complaining against your agent/lawyer would be enough.


There are many other benefits such as knowledge and skills of a registered lawyer and his experience in handling cases etc.


I myself made a mistake and hired a non registered MARA lawyer and got myself into trouble. So instead of trying to save money and then getting yourself into trouble, it is advisable to pay a little extra and hire a professionally qualified lawyer who can get things done quickly and in a proper way.


Eligibility for registration

To be eligible to register with the MARA, you must be over 18 years of age and be either:

  • an Australian citizen
  • the holder of an Australian permanent visa
  • a New Zealand citizen holding a special category visa.

In considering registration applications, the MARA must be satisfied that an applicant:

  • is a fit and proper person to provide immigration assistance (an AFP National Police Check is required)
  • has demonstrated competence in the English language
  • has completed a Graduate Certificate in Australian Migration Law and Practice or holds a current legal practicing certificate
  • holds professional indemnity insurance.

The MARA website contains forms and guidance about the requirements for becoming a registered migration agent.
See: www.themara.com.au


13 comments:

Shahid Kahn said...

Hi, I am a us citizen. I have a Master's degree in Computer Science from New YOrk, US and a Bacholar's degree in Physics frmo University of Karachi, Pakistan. I have over 12 years of experience working in the US in Information Technology field. What are my chances of obtaining Australian Immigration? Would you recommend any Migration Agent who specialises in this area?

Pleaase advise

Thank you,

Sincerely,

Shahid Masood
Email:shahmasood123@yahoo.com

Junaid N. Sahibzada said...

@Shahid

***************

Hi Shahid,

You would be better off applying for offshore immigration visa subclass 175 provided you are under the age bracket of 45 years. Read the following article for more clarification

http://immigrate-to-australia.blogspot.com/2008/03/z-of-offshore-migration.html

If you are above 45 years old, I would suggest looking into Employer sponsored options.

I would recommend Dr Arun Garg from www.auslead.com who is a specialist in skilled migration and would be able to assist you. Let me know if you

Kind Regards

Junaid

*****************

Anonymous said...

Hi Junaid,

I just came across your blog and read the information that you provided concerning Immigration to Australia and things that people should keep in mind before applying, I found your information very very helpful because i'm in the process to apply for the same very soon and I have also forwarded the link to your page to many of my friends who wish to migrate to Aus too. Thanks once again for putting up such valuable information for people like us and best of luck to you!

Cheers!

Sandeep Dewat.
INDIA

Anonymous said...

Hi There,

Could you plz tell me if I'm applicable for australian immigration becoz I got 6.5L, 6.5W, 6.5R and 5.5 Speaking. I am really got depressed and dont want to retake my ielts. I am an electronic engineer with 4 yrs experience, have completed my M.E just this month. Is there any options available since Engineer asutralia requirements is 6 in each band. I have just .5 less. Do they accept it? Please suggest me what should I do rather than retake Ielts?

Thanks,
Riyan

Junaid N. Sahibzada said...

@^^

The thing is that even if you get through Engineers Australia, with this score, you will get stuck with the immigration department as in your case their requirement is a minimum of band 6 in each module.

So there is no way you can get out of it.

Dont get dishearted as I had to give the general version of the exam 3 times before I got 7 in all modules.

Download the material I have provided in the post tagged IETLS.

Give it another try.

Kind Regards

Junaid

Anonymous said...

Hi there,

I am married,26 years old lady with B.E computer science graduate,with 4.5 years of IT experience,with OCA(oracle certification) in which I have 3 years of experience in QA,I would like to know how much is the chances of getting my PR?since last 6 months,I am working in dubai.With this kind of background whether i am eligible in SOL category?

Junaid N. Sahibzada said...

@^^

If you have been working on Oracle for the past 12 months out of the last 24 months then you call into the category

Computing Professional - specialising in Oracle 2231-79

The profession is on MODL which means you will get additional bonus points.

If you have been working in your field for the past 3 out of the last 4 yrs , you will get additional bonus points.

You will need to obtain a positive skills assessment from Australian computer society before you can claim bonus points for being a Oracle professional.

Kind Regards

Junaid

balaji said...

Dear sir,
I am from India,i have applied the visa ve175,Paper base,general electrician,submitted on dec 2007,at the time of application i am not inculded my ielts certificated i only submitted on Oct 2008.The current changes are affected/rejected my visa,becaz i submitted delayed ielts,till now i am not getting my co.
Balaji

Junaid N. Sahibzada said...

@Balaji

I am not sure what you mean?

Has your application been rejected? Or you fear that it will be rejected?

If you lodged your application in Dec 2007 and did not submit the IELTS results, then your application will be rejected because the requirement is that you send the IELTS results before lodging the application.

Kind Regards

Junaid

Anonymous said...

Hi Junaid, I have 17 years engineering experience have been able to qualify IELTS with 6.5, 7, 6.5, 7 and an overall 7 Band. Engineers Australia has accredited my qualifications as an Electrical Engineer and have been sponsored by WA state as well as SA. I applied for VISA 176 in May, and my case officer asked me for one inquiry which I sent within 15 days But now the response is slow since June 2010. Can you advise if I should improve my IELTS as some people advised as per new policies. Can it fasten the process or is it just a matter of Security Clarence in Pakistan and I should wait. Secondly should I avail a job in Saudi Arabia for one-two year contract where again I have to submit my PASSPORT etc? Pl advise as the working scenario in Pakistan is very weak?

Junaid Noor said...

@^^

But now the response is slow since June 2010. Can you advise if I should improve my IELTS as some people advised as per new policies.

Improving your IELTS score will not help because your IELTS score is what you submitted at the time of application. Any other changes would not be accepted.

Can it fasten the process or is it just a matter of Security Clarence in Pakistan and I should wait.

Follow up with case officer. There can be many reasons why an application is pending decision.


Secondly should I avail a job in Saudi Arabia for one-two year contract where again I have to submit my PASSPORT etc? Pl advise as the working scenario in Pakistan is very weak?


Of course. Dont rely on the immigration department to approve your application any time soon. they can take any amount of time to verify all the info you have provided.

Yes if you change jobs, you have to inform the department of the change in circumstances.

Kind Regards

Junaid

Anonymous said...

Hi Junaid ,


My husband has 457 Work visa for Australia , He is planning to lodge application for PR from Australia . I have few queries with regards , Kindly help

1. I Have 2.5 Years of work Experience in Human Resource post completion of my BBA graduation(2013).My Pre University was through in the year 2007 April and after which i have a gap in education .I was working in Human resource stream to fund for my degree and started pursuing in the year Feb'2010.
Will this 3 years of Work Experience be considered ?
Will this 3 years gap create problem for Visa?

What documents are required to file PR ?

Junaid Noor said...

@Anonymous

1. I Have 2.5 Years of work Experience in Human Resource post completion of my BBA graduation(2013).My Pre University was through in the year 2007 April and after which i have a gap in education .I was working in Human resource stream to fund for my degree and started pursuing in the year Feb'2010.
Will this 3 years of Work Experience be considered ?
Will this 3 years gap create problem for Visa?

What documents are required to file PR ?


That all depends upon what profession is closely related to your studies and work experience on the SOL or the CSOL

https://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Work/Work/Skills-assessment-and-assessing-authorities/skilled-occupations-lists/SOL

https://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Work/Work/Skills-assessment-and-assessing-authorities/skilled-occupations-lists/CSOL


So first check what is the profession that you plan to nominate on the SOL or CSOL for applying for PR.

Based on the assessing body of the profession, you may need more work experience or less work experience. This is dependent upon the assessing body and how much marks you score in the points test.

Kind Regards

J