Information for Education Agents in Australia
What is immigration assistance?
Under section 276 of the Migration Act 1958, 'immigration assistance' is when a person uses knowledge of, or experience in, migration procedures to:
- help to prepare a visa application
- advise a visa applicant about his/her visa application
- help to prepare a document in connection with sponsorship of an applicant or their sponsor
- prepare for proceedings or represent applicants before a court or review authority.
Education Agents can not give immigration assistance
In Australia, immigration assistance can only be given by people who are registered as migration agents with the Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority (MARA) unless they are exempt. It is a criminal offence for an unregistered person to provide immigration assistance.
Education agents are not exempt persons and therefore must not provide immigration assistance.
What Education Agents can do
Activities not regarded as 'immigration assistance' are:
- clerical work to prepare or help prepare an application or other document
- providing translation or interpretation services to help prepare an application or other document
- advising a person that they must apply for a visa
- passing on information produced by a third person, without giving substantial comment or explanation.
Education agents who are also registered migration agents are able to provide immigration assistance.
The Education Agent Training Course (EATC)
The Education Agent Training Course is an on-line training program designed for individuals working as education agents or recruiters for Australian educational institutions.
The course can help education agents or recruiters to:
- clearly delineate the allowable activities of registered Australian migration agents and others
- understand the education environment
- keep abreast of changes and developments in international education services.