Choosing a MARA Registered Migration Agent

Migration agents.

You do not have to use a migration agent to get a visa for Australia, you can do it yourself. But we did use one. Why?
MARA Agent Doing Paperwork
Although my wife’s skill was on the Skilled Occupations List, she did not have a recognised qualification for it so her skill had to be independently assessed before we could take our application further. I was over the maximum age limit, so with those two factors combined, we felt our application wasn’t straightforward.

Engaging a migration agent to help us gave us the comfort of knowing that our application, when it was finally sent off, was sound and did have a good chance of success. This is because any MARA registered migration agent has a duty to ensure that all applications they send to the Australian Government have a realistic chance of approval.

In fact, I believe that if any MARA registered agent continually submits poor applications, they will find themselves in danger of having their licence taken away from them.

Can you recommend a MARA registered migration agent?

Yes I can. I have now been working closely with MARA registered agents on this website since the beginning of 2012 providing personal and professional visa assessments. To find out more about this service, please visit the following page for full details…

What is MARA?

“The Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority is an office attached to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP). We are based in Sydney and operate nationwide.” That’s a quote taken directly from the About Us page from the official site, which you can visit here…

All migration agents in Australia must be registered with the Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority (MARA).

So, if somebody is not MARA registered, they cannot charge you a fee to help you submit your application, they would be breaking the law here in Australia if they did. But whether you are looking to use an Australian-based agent or an agent from anywhere around the world, it is essential you choose to work with only MARA registered migration agents.

More information can be found by visiting the governments MARA website mentioned above, but if you are looking for professional assistance, I do highly recommend my agent who is MARA registered and Australian-based. There is no need for face to face meetings these days either, everything is done over the Internet and by telephone.

How much will an agent cost?

MARA has a page on their website with a guide to fees…..

How much did my agent cost?

We were charged £1,213.25 including VAT by our MARA registered migration agent, but in addition to this we had to pay £675 including VAT for my wife’s skills assessment. We came over on one of the General Skilled Migration visas. The exchange rate at the time (2007) was around 2.4 to 2.5 AUD to the pound, so we paid something like $3000 to our agent and around $1500 for the skills assessment.

This was excluding government fees.

Looking at the governments price guide, what we paid back in 2007 is pretty much the average of what is currently being charged now by migration agents.

Government fees

In addition to the fees and charges made by your MARA registered migration agent, should you choose to use one, there will be a fee payable to the Australian Government for your visa.

These fees vary but the government has a page on their website with the details.

Unlike the migration agent fees, the government fees have gone up massively since 2007. Back then we paid a total of $1990 for my wife, myself, and our young daughter. Right now (March 2014) we would be charged $3520 for my wife, $1760 for myself and $880 for my daughter, totalling $6160.

Please bear in mind that these government fees are non-refundable, if your application is declined, you lose all that money. A professionally prepared application lodged through a MARA agent will minimise that risk.

MARA Agents: Payments in advance

Some migration agents ask for quite large and substantial upfront fees before they even look at your details or your situation. This should not be the case and there is no justification for any agent requesting such fees and you should treat any such requests with caution.

Other services offer a “free” assessment, but this is usually just an automated process that takes some basic details and calculates your points. If you score the requested number of points, you are then asked for a sometimes quite substantial sum in advance before they will help you further, again I suggest caution.

Never pay large sums in advance to migration agents, a reasonable deposit, 20% to 40%, should only be paid after the agent has looked at ALL of your details and has informed you, in writing, which visa or visas you might qualify for and the exact costs of applying for those visas, including the agents fees.

With our Visa Assessment Service, you will pay a small fee, but my agent will spend something like a couple of hours looking through all of your information, deciding which options are best for you, putting it all in writing and fully explaining all the costs.

If my agent feels you would not qualify for any visas, he would advise you of what YOU can do to improve your chances of success and, if possible, suggest ways you can achieve a higher points total. My agent would not take on your case if he felt you would not be successful with your application.

Should you decide to use my agent to represent you, your assessment fee is added to your account as a credit towards your costs.

If, for any reason, you are unhappy with the service, I will personally refund your money, I guarantee it.

Here’s one BIG final tip

Google is your friend. No, really! If you are considering using a specific MARA registered agent or company and you want to check them out, simply search for the name of that company followed by the word “reviews”.

You will be amazed by what might come up.

I have been contacted by several disgruntled readers who have paid good money, sometimes a lot of money, to supposedly reputable agents and they’ve received nothing but disappointment.

For each one, if these people had simply Googled the reviews about those companies they would have surely seen the opinions of many disgruntled clients and stayed away.

I suggest you Google first, pay later.

Important: Please read before commenting…
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{ 364 comments… add one }
  • Furqan October 30, 2016, 2:15 am | Link

    Dear Bob,

    Good Day, could you please guide me that if I do Online MBA from any Australian University so I could increase my score as I am a professional engineer with 6 year full time experience. My age is 30 years so may be I would get ITA easily??

  • Namneet October 15, 2016, 10:07 am | Link

    Hi,

    I would like to migrate on Australian PR from India. Request you please mail me the proposal for migration services which your organization is offering including all fee structure. Will appreciate your response as I’am willing to get your services rather than local consultants available.

    thanks,
    Namneet

    • BobinOz October 17, 2016, 5:31 pm | Link

      The way our service operates is fully described on my page about the Visa Assessment Service.

      Once you have been through the assessment you will receive a written report which will detail in full the complete fee structure. Good luck, Bob

  • CHRIST FALA MIKWARI October 10, 2016, 10:02 am | Link

    Thank

  • Pallavi October 2, 2016, 12:03 am | Link

    Dear Sir,
    I am, Ms. Pallavi, I have completed my Bachelor of Arts in 2009 in Bharathiar University, Coimbatore. I am having 5 years’ experience in ICT sales representative. I have to apply for Australia immigration through your agency. So please let me know the scope for my profile in Australia.
    1.

    • BobinOz October 2, 2016, 11:13 pm | Link

      I’m not sure I fully understand your question, but if you would like my migration agent to help you with your application you would first need to pay for the Visa Assessment Service and then complete the questionnaire you will receive and return it to my migration agent.

      Good luck, Bob

  • Rahmat September 26, 2016, 6:06 am | Link

    I want go Australia for job please help me

  • Frimpong Emmanuel September 24, 2016, 12:42 am | Link

    My name is frimpong from Ghana I am 24yrs of age can I get a company to sponsoring me to get all my documents so that, I will come and work for them

  • mark September 14, 2016, 11:11 pm | Link

    Hello Bob,
    i appreciate you must get lots of questions but would you mind giving some advice. Me and the family would like to move to Australia to live. We’ve looked into the visa situation but are not sure which route to take. Also i currently work in banking and considered trying to get a job first from the UK in order to get there, would you have any advice on this ?
    Most grateful
    mark.

  • M.prakash September 9, 2016, 8:35 pm | Link

    Respected sir, my name is prakash I am indian form chennai i am looking for packing jobs in WA parth. I am 36 aged my qualifications is +2, and diploma in music 2years, 2ed grade keyboard, photography one year diploma. But i need labour job. So please surching for job for me. Thankyou

  • Ernest September 6, 2016, 10:48 pm | Link

    Hi I am permanent resident of Australia I whant to sponsoring my brother and sisters on Humanitarian visa
    Could I get some to help me to preparing forms if I using Mara agent?

    • BobinOz September 7, 2016, 1:05 am | Link

      If you are using a MARA agent, they should help you with completing the forms.

    • fikar December 2, 2016, 12:05 pm | Link

      I looking for sponsor ..be help me n i pay fee when i working in ausy

  • Tuseef August 29, 2016, 9:38 pm | Link

    Hi
    My name is Tuseef, i am looking for job letter in Tasmania, are you able to help me with that.

    Thank you

  • Maria August 29, 2016, 4:29 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,

    Thank you for all the information. I have been following you at length and it has helped me throughtout the assessment process. However there is some information I can not find, hence asking.

    My question is that: Could I change my agent without filling in the form 956? This is used for both requesting or changing an agent. We havent filled that out yet as we only applied to Vetassess for our assessment and our agent did ask the fill the above form.

    I have a postive skills assessment but have not applied for an EOI yet as I am not satisfied with the agent I have.

    Hope to hear from you soon. Thank you.

    Maria

    • BobinOz August 29, 2016, 6:49 pm | Link

      This isn’t a question I can answer, but if you Google ‘Australian visa form 956’ it does explain in great detail who should you use the form. If you’re not happy with your agent, then yes, you should change at the earliest opportunity.

      Do make sure that whoever you choose to use going forward is a MARA registered migration agent, as explained here. Good luck, Bob

  • Kamal Sekhar August 19, 2016, 9:50 am | Link

    Hi, I am from India Currently working in UK. I am in IT Professional with more than 9 Years of Exp. I would like to migrate to Australia along with my Family. Could you please help me what kind of visa I should refer for and how to get job before going to Australia. Please help me.

  • Rams August 11, 2016, 1:52 pm | Link

    Dear Bob, I am from India. Could you please let me know can i get 457 work permit visa before travel to Australia? What is requirement to Apply to work permit visa?

    Thanks

  • CHRIST FALA MIKWARI August 7, 2016, 7:33 am | Link

    I need provide Mara number?

  • Akshay pratap singh August 1, 2016, 5:28 pm | Link

    hi I am akshay from India I am looking to get student visa to Australia for course of personal trainer .. can I get permanent visa after completing my course in Australia??

  • chombe July 27, 2016, 4:13 am | Link

    Dears,
    Kindly advice me to immigrate Australia as a skilled immigrant from Ethiopia, more than 15 years experience as a telecom Technician/Engineer .

  • Kamlesh July 24, 2016, 5:41 pm | Link

    Help to work in Australia

  • CHRISTOPHER ORTIZ July 16, 2016, 1:34 am | Link

    Good day Sir/mam,
    Currently i’m here in saudi riyadh,i want to ask how and where i get anzco certificate…any agent here?….and i want to asked if anzco and vetassess are the same?

    thanks…
    christopher

    • BobinOz July 18, 2016, 2:08 pm | Link

      There are no agents here, if you need professional assistance with your application you can use the information on this page to select an agent to act on your behalf. Good luck, Bob

  • harpreet singh June 7, 2016, 9:04 pm | Link

    i had worked for 4 year in austriala on student visa but can not finish my studies but i hav got experice of 4 year working as baker in austrialan garlic factory on tax is their any visa i can apply on my experice working in austriala as labour in bread factory kindly tell the way

  • Rama May 28, 2016, 8:56 pm | Link

    I am looking to travel Australia .. Pleae help..

    • Sanjeev July 15, 2016, 12:37 pm | Link

      Hi Rama, you need not to go for any agent for the same. you can choose from the website regarding the Visa and processing system. which visa are you thinking to come on ? may be I can get someone to help you for the same.

      • Rams August 11, 2016, 1:37 pm | Link

        Hi Sanjeev I am looking for 457 work permit visa. How can i get it.? What it needs to apply it.-Thanks

  • shivani arora May 28, 2016, 7:38 pm | Link

    I want to go Australia on tourist visa with my family

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