Top 5 Reasons to Use an Expert Migration Agent
Should you use a MARA Migration Agent to lodge your visa application, that is the question?
Firstly you must decide if the added expense of engaging an expert migration agent is really worth it?
Below are 5 prime reasons why you might consider using an expert migration agent to assist with your application.
1. Visa applications are complicated
A good example of this is the SkillSelect 189 visa.
Many people lodge these themselves without realising that the requirements are quite complex and end up with either a refusal or a visa which is not what they expected.
A Migration Agent understands both the Migration Regulations and the Department of Immigration Procedures Advice Manual. They have comprehensive pre-lodgement checklists to ensure that essential requirements are not missed at lodgement.
If you miss key times of application requirements (for example providing evidence of English language testing, health insurance, AFP clearances) you can end up being refused. This is almost impossible to fix, even if appealing to the AAT (Administrative Appeals Tribunal).
2. Migration rules are currently changing
The migration landscape is changing constantly so an option which may have been a good one last year may now not be possible.
This year there have been many changes to the Skilled Occupations Lists for General Skilled Migration, 457 and ENS.
Also, higher points scores have been required for SkillSelect invitations for Skilled Independent Subclass 189 visas.
Tasmania, ACT, Queensland, and Victoria have made significant changes to their State Migration Plans.
From now on Partner visas must be lodged online with paper applications no longer being accepted.
It is a migration agent’s job is to keep up to date with all changes to Migration Rules and to ensure that their clients are aware of all opportunities as they arise.
Because qualifying for migration to Australia is getting more competitive, and by having an expert migration agent on your side can give you a huge advantage.
3. Accessing the Department of Immigration is becoming difficult
Funding cuts and an increase in the number of visa applications lodged has made it more difficult to access the Department of Immigration than before.
Getting through on the phone is very difficult as they now prefer to deal with clients electronically.
Visa applications are now processed by teams, and you will no longer have a dedicated case manager processing your file. This makes it extremely difficult to discuss any special circumstances which may apply to your case.
Immigration is indicating that they will refuse applications where they are not fully documented.
When immigration asks for more information, their request can at times be difficult to understand. This can lead to applicants making a costly mistake by not supplying the correct documentation required.
If you use an experienced migration agent it will ensure that your case is fully documented so that any requests from Immigration are minimised.
If you do receive a request for further information, your MARA agent will advise you about which documentation will address the issues raised.
Also, they can escalate issues to management to get many problems resolved.
4. You may need a plan B
With the migration landscape changing so quickly, it is a good idea to make sure that you are considering all relevant options rather than putting all your eggs in one basket.
Proficient migration agents will be able to advise you on all of the available options. They will be able to assist in identifying the one which is best suited to your situation.
On top of this, they will be able to make sure that you keep your options open as long as possible, just in case changes to migration settings mean that the main option is no longer possible.
Due to the constant changes, obtaining permanent residence in Australia can be a highly stressful experience.
Having a dedicated migration agent to guide you through all the ups and downs of the migration process can help to improve your chances of a successful outcome.
5. Application refusal can cost you plenty
If your application is refused, you will probably lose the Department of Immigration application fees which can be thousands of Aussie dollars.
A refusal on the basis of false or misleading information can result in a 10-year ban on visa approvals.
An onshore refusal can result in a Section 48 bar – this will prevent you from lodging further visa applications from within Australia.
Some visa applications must be lodged within a certain time frame for you to be eligible – such as the Graduate Skilled Subclass 485 visa.
Also your age is an important factor in many skilled visa types.
If the migration rules change after you lodge, you may not be able to re-lodge your application.
An experienced migration agent will check your application before it’s lodged, making sure that a simple mistake will not jeopardise your immigration future.
There are plenty of MARA migration agents who are very experienced and ready and able to help you achieve your migration goals.
Think carefully, especially if your case is complicated, about hiring an expert migration agent if you have any doubts about your application.
Many agents offer a free consultation so, take advantage of one before deciding which way you prefer to go.