You are a newly registered migration agent and have assisted so far in six student visa applications. You have found that you are getting most of your business from word of mouth referrals and that the six student visa applications were the result of assisting one student who contacted you on your website and then letting his friends know about you. One of your clients, Jack Chan from China, who you also assisted with obtaining a student visa told his father about your services and how helpful you were. You have really enjoyed working on the student visa applications and hope to grow your business in this area.
One sunny afternoon, you receive an overseas phone call and it was Jack’s dad, Mr Steven Chan, asking you if you can assist him with his migration query, to which you respond “of course, it would be a pleasure.” Mr Chan asks his assistant to set up a Zoom call with you to discuss his migration options. You attend the Zoom meeting and ask Mr Chan some questions about himself. During the Zoom meeting, Mr Chan abruptly excuses himself and apologises that he has to cut your meeting short to attend to another unexpected conference call. You were actually relieved about this, as you were unsure about advising him about his visa options on the spot. You informed him that you would review his visa options and get back to him.
You undertake a few hours of research and conclude that the best visa option is a Class EA Business Skills (Business Talent) Subclass 132 Visa as Mr Chan has run a successful export business in China for over ten years with a very impressive turnover. You call a friend who you met at a CPD a couple of months ago and who has experience in business visas and you ask him what the market rate is for assisting in Business visas. He tells you for a Class EA Business Skills (Business Talent) Subclass 132 Visa it ranges between $20,000 to $30,000 depending on the complexity of the matter. You look at this as an opportunity to expand your business to assist with business visas, as you also heard from your friend that this is a profitable area, however, the problem is finding clients. Mr Chan has already told you in the Zoom conference that if he is happy with your services he will tell his friends at the local country club about you, as they have all decided they would like to migrate to Australia.
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You set up another Zoom meeting with Mr Chan to let him know of your preliminary advice and during your discussion with Mr Chan you become anxious as to whether you can assist him with a Business Talent visa application as it appears that you are not able to answer all of his questions during the meeting. Mr Chan also becomes very frustrated when you are unable to provide him with the answers and he tells you that his time is very valuable. You reassure Mr Chan you will be able to get back to him on his queries shortly.
You agreed with Mr Chan that your professional fees would be $25,000 plus disbursements. Mr Chan had no problem with this on the basis he is provided good service.
In light of these facts, what are your obligations, if any, under the Migration Agents Regulations 1998?
You are required to support your answers by specific reference to the legislative and regulatory provisions, if applicable.