Commonly Asked Questions
Why do I need an immigration lawyer?
Although you don’t need an immigration lawyer to apply for an Australian visa, there are a number of benefits of engaging one of our immigration and migration experts.
Australia has many visa options, totalling 140 subclasses. Our immigration lawyers in Melbourne are able to advise you on a number of potentially complex decisions, selecting the best visa option, checking your eligibility and any specific legal requirements, and negotiating with government bodies on your behalf.
Click here to read some of our testimonials from satisfied clients we have helped over the years.
Is it possible to renew my visa?
If you are already in Australia and there is a “NO Further Stay” condition attached to your visa, you would need to leave Australia.
However, if your visa has no such condition, you will be able to submit a new application to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP). There is however no such thing as “renewing” your visa, thus it would be treated as a new application subject to full eligibility checks and legal requirements. Thus you should seek legal advice from an immigration lawyer on your options well before your current visa expires.
How do I make an appointment?
Click here to make a booking now, which will take place in our Melbourne office, conveniently located in St Kilda Road Towers, 1 Queens Road, Melbourne Victoria 3004, Australia.
Our first consultation comes at a modest AUD $190 charge. This initial fee will be deductible should you decide to engage us for your matter.
During this consultation, an in-depth analysis and options review will be undertaken by our principle immigration lawyer to understand the requirements for your migration to Australia. You will also have the opportunity to ask any questions about your situation, all discussed in confidence.
The consultation with our principle immigration lawyer usually lasts between 40-60 minutes, depending on the complexity of your circumstances or case.
Check out more details on our pricing page.
What if my application has already been refused by the Immigration Department?
Under certain circumstances, if there is a problem with your application such as being refused, you can apply for your application to be reviewed by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT).
The review process allows you to submit new and compelling evidence for to support your visa application. Our immigration lawyers can help you find and compile this evidence and advice you on your chances of success, as well as negotiate on your behalf.
If successful, the Tribunal may emit the decision to the Immigration Department, affirming that you have met the requirements for the visa to be granted, or if unsuccessful it will affirm the Department’s decision refusing to grant the visa.
In some cases, you may also take your case to the federal court, where our immigration lawyers are able to represent you.
Read more about our services regarding AAT and Federal court representation.
Can SeekVisa guarantee a successful application?
There is always an extent of legal uncertainty, which means we cannot offer guarantees to our clients when it comes to migration to Australia.
However, we can assure our clients that we will work hard and extensively on your case using our considerable experience and training to maximise the chances of obtaining a desirable result.
This will only be done after a thorough review is done on your situation. Our immigration lawyers and consultants provide you with information on visa pathways, eligibility requirements, help you gather documents and evidence to support your case and help you gain an understanding of your chances of success.
We will be honest with your chances of success for a particular visa or matter. If it is felt that you should/could apply for an alternative visa, we will advise you to do so.
SeekVisa has an enviable success rate with cases handled for their clients. Our success is achieved through our professional experience, dedication and assurance of hard work and diligence on your matter. See our Testimonials.
If I intend to engage SeekVisa, what are the following steps?
If you intend on engaging us for your immigration matter, you will first need to come in for a consultation with our principal immigration lawyer, to discuss the details of your case.
SeekVisa needs to confirm that your case is valid and formally agree to represent you.
Then, we will open a case file for you. In most cases, a deposit, usually of $1000, will be required to be paid into our client account to get your case started.
Details of balance payable and any payment arrangement will be discussed and included in your contract.
Our immigration consultants and lawyers will then handle your immigration matter. We do not limit you to the number of times you can see us in the office. We will arrange for as many meetings as necessary to ensure that your case is up to mark before we submit it to either the Department of Immigration or relevant Tribunal.
Can I engage SeekVisa if I am not in Australia?
Yes you can. Our immigration lawyers, based in Melbourne, have dealt with clients from all parts of the world and we have the authorisation to deal with Australian Posts overseas. Our immigration lawyers will be able to prepare your case for you from Australia and liaise with the overseas posts.
More Questions & Answers
How soon can I come to Australia?
- This all depends under which type of visa you are applying for migration and the strength of your application.
- It also depends on whether you lodge yourself or use the services of a Registered .Migration Agent. Registered Migration Agents have the ability to lodge ‘Decision Ready’ visa applications which significantly reduce the processing time.
- Nobody gets a visa overnight – these things invariably takes time. Each application is unique and a time estimate can only be determined once a SeekVisa consultant has done a personal assessment.
If I buy a house in Australia will that give me a Visa?
What about my children?
If they are still dependent on you, they will be included on your visa. Married / Independent children will not qualify under your visa.
What about health?
- A medical test is standard procedure and you need to pass that. A blood test will be conducted and X-rays of the chest will be taken.
- Applicants for most types of visas for Australia are required to meet health requirements, amongst other prescribed criteria, before a visa can be granted. All applicants for permanent migration visas are required to undergo a full medical examination and chest x-ray with a “panel doctor” (see below) before a visa can be granted. Some applicants for temporary stay visas may also be required to undergo one or both examinations, or provide a “fitness to travel” letter from a doctor before a visa can be granted.
- All children / dependents included in your application aged 11 + must undertake full medicals and X-ray examination.
All the persons included in your application as well as all of your dependents (even if they are not included in your application) MUST undertake a medical exam, and must “pass” the medical. If one fails, all fail – and the visa will be refused.
I am already in Australia. Can you give me advice concerning my visa?
Yes! If you are in Australia, we can advise you on any migration issue, including helping you to:
- Extend your current visa
- Apply for a different visa
- Become a Permanent Resident of Australia
- Become an Australian Citizen
- Communicate with the Department of Immigration and Citizenship
- Deal with the cancellation of your visa
- Appeal against a case officers decision
May I work in Australia?
- If you want to work in Australia, it is important that the visa you are issued allows you to do so. Certain types of visas do not permit you to work in Australia. Some visas restrict the number of hours you can work per week.
- If you want to work in Australia, it is important that you apply for the correct visa type. We can advise you on the best visa to apply for to suit your circumstances.
- If you would like to know more about working in Australia, please complete the request form or contact us by e-mail, mail or telephone.
- For some visas, we may be able to waive work restrictions if you have are in financial hardship.
May I study in Australia?
- Australia has an excellent education system. There are a variety of courses suitable for all levels of education, for all ages. People from outside Australia can travel to Australia to complete accredited courses.
- Recently, there has been a number of changes to Australia’s Student Visa Program. One major change was the introduction of the Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE) requirement which means you may be assessed whether your intentions to study in Australia are genuine.
- Please do not rely on Education Agents for Australian Immigration Advice. They are not qualified to provide you with immigration advice and it is against the Law to do so.
There are a number of visas which allow people to study in Australia. It is important that you choose the most suitable visa. If you would like to know more about studying in Australia, please complete the request form or contact us by e-mail, mail or telephone.
Can I visit Australia while my migration application is being processed?
You will need to meet the requirements for that class of visa, which may include the requirement that you only intend a holiday or short visit. Visitor visas are not intended to provide residence in Australia for migration applicants awaiting the outcome of their application.
…and you must inform us if you are temporarily in Australia as we can continue your processing whilst you are there.
I am applying under the partner provisions do you need to interview me and my partner/sponsor?
In most cases we may need to interview you, but this can be done over the telephone if you are unable to attend our office. We will contact you if we need to arrange an interview.
Does my sponsor (i.e. spouse or partner) have to remain in the country of residence during processing?
If I am approved, how long do I have before I must travel to Australia?
The initial entry date (stated on your visa) is the date by which you must travel to Australia on your visa. This date is calculated based on the validity of your health and character clearances. These clearances are usually only valid for 12 months.
If you (and any members of your family included in your application) do not enter Australia by the initial entry date, you will breached a condition of your visa and consideration will be given to canceling your visa.
How do I have character checks done?
In order for the Australian government to determine whether you are of good character, you may be asked to provide penal clearance certificates for each country you have resided in for 12 months or more over the last 10 years. In some instances, you may also be asked to obtain penal clearance certificates for periods beyond the 10 years or for countries where you have spent less than 12 months when the case warrants it.
Why should I use a Migration Agent and when should I make my decision to migrate to Australia?
Experience suggests that many people interested in Migrating to Australia spend a lot valuable time thinking about making their migration decision or go bargain hunting (looking for the cheapest advice they can get) or simply attempt to do themselves and fail.
The below are 7 reasons why you should act quickly and use a Australian Registered Migration Professional:
Take advantage of current migration laws which can and usually always get harder as they change over time. Australian Migration Law is complex and constantly changing. The Skilled Occupation List is constantly being monitored and renewed. Your occupation may not be an occupation that is in demand in Australia tomorrow. Furthermore, Visa Application Charges (VAC) are indexed annually (sometimes bi-annually).
Avoid the stress of getting yourself and your family into a difficult migration situation or not knowing what to do with your migration – stress is often caused when you do not know how to solve a problem and feel trapped. Unless you have access to professionals like us with our many and varied information resources you can only rely on your own research and inaccurate gossip – that is hardly, the basis for making important decisions about where you will spend the rest of your life.
Save money and time by not having to do migration the hard way – the costs of returning home unexpectedly or making more than one visa application can easily be double or more the costs of the original application. There is just no point risking this lost money as well as the lost opportunity to earn a better income in Australia just to save on some professional fees. If you have a visa refused it will impact on a further visa application you make – So get it right the first time and use a Migration Professional like ourselves.
Protect your family by being in Australia sooner with your visa, especially if you normally live in a dangerous country – this hardly needs explaining, but Australia is one of the safest countries in the world, ranked 21st of 158 countries on the Global Peace Indicator. As many of the countries above it are Scandinavian and freezing, this is a great ranking, unless you like being cold and in the dark most of the year! http://www.visionofhumanity.org/gpi-data/
With an Australian work visa you most likely will increase your income by earning more in Australia, which has some of the highest wages in the world – most people in the world would love to earn the Australian average annual income of around $A60,000. That’s $1200 per week. As for average disposable income, Australia was recently ranked 5th behind only the USA, Ireland, Luxembourg & Switzerland (source: OECD + http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_average_wage)
Access greater medical assistance, and in some cases free medical help, by coming under the protection of Australia’s Medicare system – Australia has one of the best public health programs in the world that has existed for nearly 30 years.
Start planning your career future and your children’s educational future with certainty as soon as your Australian migration issues are resolved in your favour – these job and employment factors always rank very high when people are deciding where to live. If you are still working out complex migration issues and not even sure if you can get your visa you cannot even start planning these matters at all, let alone make firm commitments.