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DIBP's List A and List B of migration agents no longer in use

Recently, in Newsletter 419 of March 2014 Migration_Newsletter_419 (Click here for a copy), Peter Bollard writes of DIBP's migration agent A and B lists as follows:

A and B lists and platinum cards

In previous newsletters the writer has mentioned that migration agents can use FOI requests to seek information held on them by DIBP.

Below is a link to a disclosure log relating to an FOI  request- the emails dated 4 November 2014 and 13 November 2013 will be of interest to migration agents (they are towards the end).

I have spoken with the Migration Agents Section (MAS) at DIBP in Canberra after receiving numerous enquiries from RMAs about how to find out which list they are on.  I can advise that the lists A and B are not in use any more and are very old.  These lists were never decision making tools.

With reference to Lists A and B the term 'migration agents' does not in fact distinguish the term 'Registered Migration Agents', therefore 'Unregistered Migration Agents' were also taken into consideration.

Lists A and B go back nearly ten years so it is unfortunate that this has been dragged out again as they are really old.  I can assure you that the DIBP have confirmed they are no longer in operation.

I would encourage Registered Migration Agents not to concern themselves over the old Lists A and B.

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  • Piotr Ferenc
    Piotr Ferenc Wednesday, 12 March 2014

    Excuse ignorance - what is the list A / B about ? I have never heard of it .

    Reply Cancel
  • Liana - Allan
    Liana - Allan Wednesday, 12 March 2014

    Piotr, click on the links in the news piece above and you will find the information in there.

  • John Findley
    John Findley Wednesday, 12 March 2014

    Hello all, The lengthy document from the DIBP FOI officer is not a particularly satisfying response. It goes into great lenghts about what the officer considers or doesn't consider, but doesn't say unequivocally that the department INCLUDING its many and diverse overseas posts, do not use or refer to some form of categorisation of migration agents. The letter does not say tell us what is the purpose of the A list and B list.

    The very existence of such a categorisation of migration agents, for whatever purpose, is shameful; it exposes the secretive and clandestine activities for which the department has a reputation.

    It is time for the department to come clean and to describe the function and purpose of any categorisation of migration agents, and for the department to open itself to public scrutiny.

    It does not matter that the department claims the list is no longer used. There is a fundamental lack of procedural fairness and it should be exposed. It is outrageous that a government department could operate a system of categorisation of migration agents without discussion with each individual agent whose name appears on the list.

    A new government is in place, it's time for the new broom to sweep through the department. John Findley MARN0316938

    Reply Cancel
  • Liana - Allan
    Liana - Allan Wednesday, 12 March 2014

    Hi John, by the looks of things even the people now in place seem to be asking internal questions about the lists, and the right questions. It would appear that even they were surprised at to the existence of such lists.

  • Guest
    M (migration agent - annonymous) Wednesday, 12 March 2014

    Hi Liana –

    Just received the news blast on this – perhaps a related question – to what extent, if any, is the “track record” of an agent in terms of their approval/refusal statistics, number of years in the business, lawyer or not, etc factored or utilised in decisions related to the level of scrutiny an application will be subjected to by DIBP? Clearly they keep these statistics in order to comply with the requirements where agents with too many refusals may be considered vexatious. We’ve all heard the stories about applications from big agencies (ie, Fragomen, E&Y, etc) in some cases flying through the system while those from smaller agents end up taking a much longer time. Given that DIBP has (in the case of the A/B list procedure previously used) in the past subjected agents to some sort of assessment and made processing decisions based on that assessment, I’d be interested to know if any of those kinds of processes still exist.

    Reply Cancel
  • Guest
    GS Wednesday, 12 March 2014

    According to the FOI release, the list was created as recently as in the mid-2010. So it is not 10 years old.

    Reply Cancel
  • Liana - Allan
    Liana - Allan Wednesday, 12 March 2014

    I was told on the phone it was 10 years old and no longer relevant. I will go back and ask. Thanks GS.

  • Liana - Allan
    Liana - Allan Thursday, 13 March 2014

    The response from the DIBP regarding concerns raised above is as follows:

    “Each application received by the department is considered on its merits. Applications may be processed more quickly if complete at time of lodgement or in accordance with any directions under S499 of the Migration Act."

  • Guest
    steve Saturday, 15 March 2014

    If interest received on clients monies really plays so minor a part in the income stream of RMAs then why not garner the industry some much needed goodwill and positive publicity for a change by including in the client contract the provision that all interest monies received will be paid to some central purpose that the profession as a whole can decide. A charity, agent education,research or whatever appeals generally.

    Is there an A list or B list of DIBP assessors. Collectively I am sure we have enough info to start a very lively forum detailing our experiences.

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