Becoming a Migration Agent

Becoming a migration agent can be quite a profitable business venture as there is a great deal of interest in migrating to western countries such as the United States, Australia, Canada the United Kingdom and England. Basically an agent is someone that uses knowledge or experience of procedure to assist other people to apply for visas. You need to register as an agent if you conduct this activity for profit. Those covered by this requirement include people providing assistance to people bringing court proceedings in respect of migration decisions and providing assistance to people who ask the government to exercise a personal discretion after a decision by a tribunal or in respect of certain people in immigration detention.

Help with an application for Citizenship is usually not included in the definition of immigration assistance in most countries. However, it is advisable to obtain advice on citizenship issues from a competent migration assistance professional. It is also important to be aware that not all lawyers are agents and not all agents are lawyers. Relatively few professionals hold both qualifications. There are also a range of people who can provide immigration assistance without the qualification of being a migration assistance professional. These people include lawyers advising on court proceedings, parliamentarians and their staff, employers intending to sponsor an employer sponsor visa, sponsors of visa applicants, diplomats, public servants and close family members.

As an example for Australia, in order to become a registered migration agent, a person must make an application for registration on an approved form to the Migration Agents Registration Authority, be over 18 years old, be an Australian Citizen, be proficient in English, be a person of integrity and have a prescribed qualification which can include a legal practicising certificate from any state or territory of Australia or completion of an approved course under the regulations. A registered agent will need to hold professional indemnity insurance and publish a notice of intention to register on the Migration Agents Registration Authority website. The registration office has a policy of checking a person’s character by using an Australian National police record check. Also, where a lawyer applies for a migration agent authorisation, their profesional indemnity insurance through the law society concerned is sufficient to meet the requirements for the need for insurance under the regulations.

Only a commercial migration agent can charge a fee for providing immigration advice or assistance. This provision does not prevent a lawyer charging for immigration legal assistance. Migration assistance professionals report an average income of approximately $70,000.00 per year. Migration is a field of law that allows one to assist people to come to Australia which is an excellent country to come to for those looking for opportunities.