Migration Agents Review Underway

By: Australian

A discussion paper on how to further improve standards in the migration advice sector was released today by the Assistant Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, the Hon Teresa Gambaro MP.

'Migration agents are now used by over 70 per cent of applicants in some visa classes,' Ms Gambaro said.

'The migration advice profession has the potential for further growth and I am committed to seeing the performance and reputation of migration agents improve along with their expanding client base.'

Ms Gambaro released the wide ranging discussion paper for public comment. Issues examined include:

* the continuing adequacy of the regulatory framework for the profession, including whether the profession is ready for a move to self-regulation and dual regulation of lawyer agents

* complaints handling procedures and the effectiveness of the Migration Agents' Registration Authority

* how, in certain circumstances, priority processing might work for visa applications lodged through migration agents

* the adequacy of the Migration Agents' Code of Conduct.

'Migration advice has matured significantly in recent times from a profession that was largely unregulated in Australia before the early 1990s,' Ms Gambaro said.

'The Government believes that consumers have a right to expect that they will be provided with advice from migration agents which is accurate, timely, and lawful, and which demonstrates high standards of professional conduct.'

Submissions to the review should be made by October 26, 2007. Copies of the paper are available electronically.

Wednesday, September 12 2007

See: www.immi.gov.au

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