LCA Immigration Lawyers
Information for consumers – Australian Immigration Lawyers Directory
A new website has been established – the Australian Immigration Lawyers Directory – to provide a source of useful information for consumers on how to find an Australian immigration lawyer who will be qualified to assist them with their Australian immigration and/or citizenship matters.
Information for Lawyers
What deregulation means for the Australian legal profession?
Australian legal practitioners have not been subject to regulation by the Office of the Migration Agents’ Registration Authority (OMARA) since the commencement of the Migration Amendment (Regulation of Migration Agents) Act 2020 (Cth) on 22 March 2021.
This means that a person seeking advice about their visa options, their visa application, or a review of their case by the Migration and Refugee Division of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal, can use the services of lawyers who are not registered migration agents (RMAs).
Since 22 March 2021, Australian legal practitioners have not been listed on the OMARA website (except for a limited class of lawyers with restricted practising certificates for a limited transitional period – see below).
For more information about deregulation of lawyers, see the Department of Home Affairs website, or the factsheet from the Law Institute of Victoria.
Transitional arrangements have been developed to enable lawyers who are no longer RMAs to access ImmiAccount.
The transitional period is from 22 March to November 2021.
During the transitional period, lawyers can use their former MARN as a temporary lawyer ID number to access ImmiAccount. Lawyers can use their former MARN for this purpose until such time as a new unique identifier number is provided by the Department of Home Affairs (the Department). This is expected to be in place until November 2021.
A new form 956 Appointment of a registered migration agent, legal practitioner or exempt person is available on the Department website to allow the holder of an Australian legal practising certificate to advise the Department that they have been appointed by a client (e.g. a visa applicant) to provide immigration assistance under the Migration Act 1958 (Cth) and, if applicable, to receive documents on their behalf.
The Department's website now has a new tab titled ‘Using a legal practitioner’. From this page, lawyers can download and complete the new form 1548 ‘Application for an Australian Legal Practitioner Number’ (LPN). The form 1548 asks for a MARN – lawyers can provide their former MARN.
Lawyers should then email the completed form 1548 with a copy of their practising certificates to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The lawyer will receive a response from the email@example.com mailbox with advice that their details have been updated and how they can access ImmiAccount.
Information from the Administrative Appeals Tribunal
Information on new migration and refugee application forms can be found here.