In Australia, a person who charges a fee for legal services must hold a current practising certificate. These must be renewed each year. In order for a renewal of their practising certificate to be renewed, Australian lawyers must be able to demonstrate that they:
- hold current compulsory professional indemnity insurance,
- have completed the required amount of Continued Professional Development (CPD) training, and
- have accurate audit records of any trust accounts held.
It’s important that you feel secure about the manner in which your visa application is handled. In the event that a migration service provider mishandles your case, or makes a mistake in preparing your visa application, you no doubt want the reassurance that comes from knowing you will be able to register a complaint and recoup any financial loss resulting from that mistake.
Given the high level of regulation that applies to Australian lawyers, there are numerous avenues available for you to lodge a complaint that would be thoroughly investigated by the regulating agency.
All Australian lawyers must abide by the directions of the Legal Profession Uniform Law Application Act 2014. Strict rules apply to the way in which an Australian lawyer is permitted to deal with any money you pay to them. Consequently, any misuse of money you have paid to an Australian lawyer would be thoroughly investigated.
If your money was found to have been misappropriated you could expect to be reimbursed by the Legal Practitioners Fidelity Fund for your financial loss. Furthermore, the way in which an Australian lawyer deals with your money is automatically subject to an independent audit by an approved auditor. The rules serve to protect your funds from misappropriation.