Australian Embassy

Using a migration Agent

Authorising someone to act on your behalf or someone to be an authorised recipient, using local agents and Migration Agents. 

We can only discuss an application with someone other than the applicant or the sponsor if you have authorised us to do so.   For example, a close family member or friend a migration agent.  If you would like someone to act on your behalf, they should provide a Form 956  Advice by a Migration agent/exempt person of providing assistance.  The form must be:

  • Completed by the person you are appointing or withdrawing
  • Signed by you. 

Using a migration Agent

You do not need to use a migration or visa agent when lodging a visa application. An agent cannot influence, predetermine the outcome, or fast-track the processing of your application.

However, if you do not feel confident in lodging a visa application, or if your case is complex, you may wish to use a migration agent to assist with you application. If you decide to use an agent, it is recommended that you use a registered migration agent.

Registered migration agents are registered by the Australian Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority. This ensures that only qualified people are registered to provide immigration assistance by meeting professional standards, following the Code of Conduct and maintaining up-to-date knowledge of migration law and procedure.

There are many agents operating outside Australia who are not registered and therefore are not required, under Australian law, to maintain the standards required of Registered Migration Agents. If you decide to use an unregistered agent outside Australia, make sure you understand what you can reasonably expect from them and know your options if the agent acts incompetently, dishonestly or fraudulently.

For more information on registered migration agents and locations, please visit  

For more information on using a migration agent, please visit using a migration agent

Appoint or withdraw someone to receive correspondence on your behalf

An authorised recipient is a person appointed to receive documents from the department relating to matters arising under the Migration Act 1958 (the Act) or the Migration Regulations 1994 on behalf of another person.

The department cannot discuss matters relating to you with the authorised recipient unless they are also acting on your behalf as your migration agent/exempt person, or you have separately provided the department with consent to disclose your personal information to them.

Under most circumstances, you will not receive a separate copy of the documents. You are taken to have received any documents sent to your authorised recipients as if they had been sent to you. You should be aware that the documents sent to your authorised recipient might include sensitive information about matters such as your health and character.

Provide Form 956a - Appointment or withdrawal of an authorised recipient (116 KB PDF).

The form must be:

  • completed by the person who will receive (or will no longer receive) the correspondence and
  • signed by you.