27th April 2018
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Australian Visas - FAQs

    What's the benefit of having an Australian Immigration Lawyer prepare my visa application?

    A. Many prospective visa applicants have asked why they need an Australian immigration lawyer to prepare their visa application. Understandably, applicants often want to know what additional benefits they stand to gain if they engage the services of an Australian immigration lawyer in preference to a Migration Agent or preparation of their own Australian visa application.

    Does your firm employ an Accredited Immigration Law Specialist? 

    A. Yes, our principal migration lawyer, Melissa Haag, is an Australian Legal Practitioner (lawyer), Registered Migration Agent (R.M.A. No. 0000586) and Accredited Specialist in Australian Immigration Law.  This means Melissa has been recognised by The Specialisation Board of the Law Institute of Victoria as having demonstrated specialist skills, experience and proficiency in immigration law.  Only the best lawyers in their field of expertise become Law Institute of Victoria Accredited Specialist. 

    How can I contact Haag Walker Lawyers?

    A. If you would like a comprehensive migration assessment and the reassurance that comes from having a highly skilled and experienced migration lawyer consider your specific circumstances, please complete the FREE Australian Visa Eligibility Assessment and select the migration Visa Service option that bests suits your needs.

    How does the Free on-line Australian Visa Eligibility Assessment (VEA) Work?

    A. Our FREE on-line Visa Eligibility Assessment (VEA) uses advanced software technology designed exclusively for Haag Walker Lawyers. It relies on tailored questions specifically designed to quickly & automatically determine whether you are likely to satisfy the basic threshold criteria of your nominated visa subclass.

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    How do I become an Australian citizen? 

    A. This would depend in part on your individual set of circumstances.  For example, if you are an Australian Permanent Resident, satisfy the residential requirements and meet the Character requirements, you are likely to be eligible for Australian citizenship.

    How long is my Australian Permanent Residency valid for?

    A. The Permanent Residency visa is valid for a period of 5 years, but you will be entitled to remain in Australia even if the visa expires, if you are in Australia at that time.

    During the validity period of the Permanent Residency visa, you have the right to remain in Australia indefinitely and to depart from and re-enter Australia at any time. However, if you intend to depart from Australia after your Permanent Residency visa has expired, you must ensure that you obtain a Resident Return Visa prior to your departure. There are separate requirements attached to obtaining a Resident Return Visa.

    What does becoming a Permanent Resident of Australia entitle me to?

    A. Becoming a permanent Australian resident entitles you to the same rights and benefits as all Australian citizens. If your permanent resident visa is granted, you will be able to:

    How much money do I need to settle in Australia?

    A. This will vary according to your personal circumstances, such as whether you are bringing family with you to Australia, where you intend to live, whether you have already secured employment in Australia, and other lifestyle choices.

    You will need to research what day to day living will cost in Australia, including transport costs, rental costs in the area you plan to settle in, the cost of food, the price of utilities (i.e. - electricity, phone, water) and so on. It’s also worthwhile considering the cost of other services you might use while living in Australia, such as schooling for your children (if applicable) or health insurance for yourself and your family.

    Can you help me to find a job in Australia?

    A. Haag Walker Lawyers practice exclusively in the provision of immigration advice and services and as such are not able to assist you in searching for a job in Australia. However, there are a number of Australian organisations that offer this service.

    Can you offer any guarantees that my visa application will be successful?

    A. Unfortunately, we cannot offer you any guarantees regarding the outcome of your application. For a visa application to be successful, you as the applicant must satisfy all requirements of the visa class being applied for. This is ultimately up to the Department of Immigration &  Border Protection.

    How much will it cost to lodge an Australian visa application?

    A. You will need to pay a Visa Application Charge (VAC) upon lodging your visa application. This charge is payable to the Australian Government. All charges are non refundable (in all but exceptional circumstances) regardless of whether your visa application is ultimately granted or not. Because visa application fees are non-refundable, subject to certain exemptions, it is vital that you receive correct advice right from the start of the migration application process – this will save you time and money.

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    How long before my Australian visa application is finalised?

    A. The processing time for visa applications will vary according to the visa class being applied for, and the priority order in which applications are processed by the Department of Immigration.

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    Why use an Australian immigration lawyer?

    A. This will depend substantially on your individual set of circumstances. We suggest that you complete our FREE Visa Eligibility Assessment (VEA) and then choose which of our services you feel is most suited to your circumstances and needs.

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    Why use an Australian immigration lawyer?

    A. It’s useful to be aware of some of the more noticeable distinctions between Australian Lawyers practicing immigration law and Non-Lawyer Migration Agents. 

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    Why use an Australian based migration lawyer / agent instead of one from your country of residence?

    A. Using an Australian based migration service provider is the best option. Given the complex nature of Australian immigration law, and the degree and frequency of change to immigration laws and practice, Australian based migration lawyers / agents are able to offer you the most current and reliable migration advice.

    Can I apply for an Australian visa from overseas?

    A. Yes. You can apply for an Australian visa while you are residing overseas. We have extensive experience in dealing with overseas clients, and are able to arrange your Australian visa application while you are offshore.

    Australian Migration Lawyer


    Established in 2002, Haag Walker Lawyers has successfully assisted thousands of Australian businesses and individuals to navigate migration law requirements.
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    Frequently Asked Questions

    Q. How do I become an Australian citizen?

    A. This would depend in part on your individual set of circumstances.  For example, if you are an Australian Permanent Resident, satisfy the residential requirements and meet the Character requirements, you are likely to be eligible for Australian citizenship.

    Read More