Are you Rich Enough to Afford Free Migration Advice?


Free Migration Advice – Is It Really A Bargain?

You can get free advice about Australian migration any time you want it.  Just search on “Google”.  Everywhere you’ll find websites with people commenting on migration.  Some of it’s good stuff.  Some of it applies to some people not others.  And lots of it is just plain rubbish.

Try going to an expat chat site and asking a question about visas.   Sure, people will answer you.  Sometimes even professional migration agents will contribute.  In fact with all of the free advice around, it’s easy to believe that migration agents are just an expensive waste of money.

It’s entertaining to read the good stories.   And people love to shout about their successes.  It’s great to hear that Declan got his 856 visa easily without any help from expensive agents.  And I have no doubt that Sally’s refusal was overturned when she went to the MRT.

But how often do you read that Ahmed kicks himself for being refused because he didn’t  know  the requirements for student visas changed considerably last November before lodging an application?  Or that Jane missed a critical deadline while doing her own visa, consequently the application was refused and she had to leave the country?   Not likely – people don’t usually brag about getting it wrong!

An overseas move is one of the biggest decisions you’ll ever make in your life.  And be realistic – it’s likely to cost you a lot of money.  And often you only get one bite at the cherry.

The main point is, would you really take action based on what an unverified person writes in a chatroom?

 In fact some migration agents claim to offer Free Advice as well.    

What most of them really mean is that they offer  “Generic Information”.   Unless an agent is collecting personal details about you and your family, thoroughly researching the options and giving you individualised advice, you’re taking a risk in acting on information, not advice.

We’re all individuals…together.

The fact is, few people fit exactly into a mould.  With over 150 different visa subclasses, there’s a lot of room for strategy and careful planning.   And if you get it wrong in the beginning, you might close doors for yourself in future.

On July 1, 2012, 70% of the total migration program is changing.   And 39 pieces of legislation will be repealed, revised or introduced.   Around 20% of an agent’s work time is spent keeping up to date on legislative and procedural changes in migration.

That’s why Emergico’s migration agents are in a great position to help you with advice, strategy and management of your case.   After all, we’re doing it all the time.

 Free Advice can get expensive!

So here’s what you should know about Free Migration  Advice – before you decide whether it’s for you.

  • Free advice is generic.
  • It often focuses on the newsworthy and positive aspects, not the “fine print”.
  • Free advice doesn’t take into account your own situation.  It doesn’t look beyond the obvious answers and search for alternative pathways which might be more suitable.
  • You have no recourse against free advice.
  • Free Advice is often not updated when legislation changes.
  • If you act on generic information, Free advice can be the most expensive advice you will ever get.

And here’s what you should ask yourself

  • Can you afford to risk wasting a lot of money by relying on free or unqualified migration advice?
  • Would you honestly trust your future to unsubstantiated claims and generic information?
  • Can you afford to have a visa refused on a technicality, resulting in your having to leave the country before re-applying (if  you’re eligible)?
  • Wouldn’t you be better off if you knew the “big picture” in the first place?  Such as, what happens if you want to bring family members with you later?
  • Have you thought about the stress and anxiety that a wrong decision would cause you and your family?

 It’s a bit like insurance.  Professional  advice gives you peace of mind.

Surprisingly, only around 60% of our clients are those who want to get it right the first time.

The other 40% are people who have already tried to get a visa on their own; and experienced a problem or realised they’ve gone down a dead end road.   (We LOVE these clients – they contribute far more money to the business!)

Don’t confuse Free Advice with our Free Online Assessment.  This is broad based information which lets you find out broadly what visa options might be open to you.  But if you plan to act, do consider whether spending a couple of hundred dollars on a proper consultation with Emergico will actually save you money and stress in the long term.





Leanne Stevens

CEO, Emergico // Registered Migration Agent (#1171279)