Should I Demand a Refund (Migration Agent Fees VISA) ?

Hello all,

Looking for some advice if I should further pursue a refund or follow up with a complaint against a migration agent.

I am in a bit of a pickle with my current visa and sought advice from a registered migration agent. As some of you may know, they generally charge a consultation fee. I have been to 3 agents with the fees being $330, $250 and $130 for hour long consultation. I sent all my documents before the meeting as requested and they set up a plan for me.

Now, I have 2 different pathways and options.

330 gave an option and 250 and 130 both gave the same alternative option.

According to 250 and 130, they both said that 330 option is not valid for my case and she was full of rubbish questioning her legitimacy.

I called to confirm with 330 again and she admitted that after looking at my case again, none of the options she provided are valid. She then proceeded to throw random visa's at me, all of which were rejected by 250 and 130. Finally she says that nothing can be done.

So the question is, should I make a complaint, get a refund, leave a bad review etc?

Poll Options

  • 2
    Make a formal complaint against some governing body?
  • 52
    Request a refund?
  • 3
    Leave a bad/ honest review online?

Comments

  • Were you paying for the consultant's time in meeting with you, or for a solution to your problem?
    If the former, then you got what you paid for. If the latter, you didn't.
    Either way I think it is reasonable for you to request a refund - however when you are entitled to one depends on the question above.

    • If you read in detail, Consultant A provided an option which wasn't valid, at a guess they provided generic advise instead of the specific advice being paid for.

      If you paid for specific advice and received generic advice you are entitled to a refund, if however you just received bad advice then you aren't.

    • They advertise:

      GET YOUR FREE VISA PRE-ASSESSMENT
      We know that for many individuals and families, the chance to migrate to Australia could be life-changing. Consequently, it is worth getting expert advice from a migration agency that has helped thousands of people and businesses for over 30 years.Understanding your visa options is the first step.

      I did not go with this option and went straight to the consultation as my situation was an emergency. So paid upfront in full before the meeting along with sending them all the information that they requested.

  • Option 2 and if no luck then option 3.

  • You paid for a consultation /thread

    • Yes, possibly and they gave their advice.

      The problem is, if I had simply gone with their advice I would have ended up with a worse problem and been kicked out of the country as their advice did not apply in my case.

      It would have been better if their advice was 'there are no options' instead of giving me options that would have had worse results.

  • Where is the fourth option where they provided advice and should get paid for their time?

  • All of the above.

  • $330 should give you a refund.

  • Seeing as you provided all the relevant info needed to sort out a plan and none was provided, the consultation should've been called off as they could've told you via email there was no solution. You may have been entitled to partial refund as they did do some 'legwork' to come to a conclusion. Given the others found a solution I would request a full refund based on incompetence of 330. if they are not will do a CC chargeback if possible and leave a negative review.

    • They should have said there are no options instead of giving me false options that could have made my situation far worse.

      Doesn't that count more as negligence?

  • I dont think you will get a refund mate. you can leave a review however

  • Where is your choice of 'None of the above'.. ???

  • This is totally the situation I had with a friend of mine, when i was trying to help him relocate to Australia. I did a bunch of research for him and gave him a summary of what I had found (that things didn't look so good for him in his current line of work), and he didn't believe me because the migration agent had told him otherwise. But after paying the agent for a proper consult, he found out that I was right all along and he was out of pocket AND out of luck. These agents are really just grubby little thieves in a lot of cases, preying on people who think that path will make the migration process smoother for them

    • Like you found out. All the information is available online, it isn't rocket science. People just likes to pay to be told they are just dreaming.

      • Funnily enough, government had decided that we didn't need more graphic designers…

      • I mean, look, i wouldn't say it was super easy to follow. There's a lot of conflicting information from various states, oodles of links that take you in circles, and lots of TLAs (3 letter acronyms). But broadly it was straightforward enough to get to the crux of it - that occupation wasn't covered by that No Questions Asked kind of immigration he wanted

  • Shouldn't they be held accountable for their advice?

    If I had chosen to act on their option, I would have been rejected, my visa cancelled and been forced to leave the country.

    Doesn't that count as negligence?

    If I doctor says to take this medicine and I die, isn't that their fault?

    • Yeah nah.

      It's a case of too bad, so sad. You can complain to MARA, the agent might get a slap on the wrist but that's the end of it.

      Depending on when the agent got their registration, I was told in the early days there weren't even formal training requirements other than Joe Blow sat and pass the exam then that's the end of it. Got more structured over the years like most things, all they needed was a grad cert, passed it and apply for rego but now it requires a grad dip with a 'Capstone' exam that hardly anyone can pass so the later bunch might be better trained but less experienced. The course contents of the grad dip seems to be cookie cutter'ed at best and won't prepare the up and coming agents to handle the non-cookie cuttered cases.

  • You can complain to MARA but they can't (conveniently enough) order them refund.

    https://www.mara.gov.au/using-an-agent/resolving-disputes-wi...