Applying for an Australian visa can be stressful and applicants usually go through a roller coaster ride of emotions. So how do you stay sane while applying for your visa? Here are some tips.

Stop listening to everyone.

People around you will tell you their own views and experience in applying for a visa and will give you advice even if you are not asking for it. This may bring doubt or confusion about your current application.

Make sure you clarify things you hear that you think can affect your visa application with your Registered Migration Agent (RMA) or Immigration Lawyer (if you have one). If you applied on your own and you are in doubt, make sure you get advice from legitimate sources (RMAs, Immigration Lawyers, or the Department of Immigration).

Do not quit your job yet.

No one can guarantee your visa approval. RMAs and Immigration Lawyers are not allowed to do so if they follow the RMA Code of Conduct. It is only when you get the visa notification grant when you can be 100% sure that your visa is granted, therefore, it is best that you don’t leave your job yet.

Waiting for your visa approval when you do not have anything else to do (because you have left your job) can be more stressful for you. You also should think about what happens when you quit your job and your visa application was refused.

Get proper advice.

Remember that each visa application has its own merits and will be processed by different Case Officers based on the migration legislation at the time of application and grant, therefore, you cannot easily compare the result of your friend’s or classmate’s or anyone else’s visa application outcome to yours.

Even if you plan to do your own application, it is still best to get advice from legal sources such as RMAs and Immigration Lawyers. You can get search for licensed advisers at https://www.mara.gov.au/using-an-agent/.

In Australia, it is illegal for unregistered advisers to give immigration advice (includes Education Agents, friends, colleagues and people giving advice on FB groups without a MARA licence). Unregistered advisers can be fined up to $6,600 or be imprisoned for a maximum of 10 years if someone reports them to the MARA. These are efforts by the government to protect visa applicants from getting inaccurate and outdated advice.

For more information, go to: https://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Visa/Usin/immigration-assistance.

Know your timeframes and accept any changes/delays.

You should know your visa application processing lead time and make sure you follow up for the decision only if you have been waiting for over a few weeks after the set processing time. Inquiring with the Department of Immigration about the decision on your case within the processing lead time will not get you anywhere.

Processing lead times as well as the migration legislation changes all the time. You can get information about visa application lead times and migration legislation changes from the Department of Immigration’s website or from your RMA or Immigration Lawyer.

(Johanna Bertumen Nonato is a Registered Migration Agent (MARN 1386856) and the CEO of BridgeAus Migration Consultancy. For inquiries, email info@bridgeaus.com.au or call 0427 589 274.)

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