Much of the following information has been extracted from the Immigration Advisers Authority website consumer guide.
Start by checking the Immigration Adviser Authority’s (IAA's) online register to find the nearest licensed adviser to you.
Anyone giving immigration advice must be licensed by the IAA, unless exempt. If you choose a licensed immigration adviser, you are more likely to be able to get your money back and/or compensation if you receive poor immigration advice or services.
There are several exceptions for advisers to be exempt from licensing, namely those who provide immigration advice offshore about student visa applications only.
Fees charged by advisers vary for a number of reasons including adviser experience, complexity of application, level of personal service provided and current market rates.
Charges can also be made for expenses such as photocopying, phone calls and couriers.
IAA publishes both figures to give migrants the most accurate picture of market rates. The average is calculated by dividing the total fees by the number of advisers. The median is the middle number of the average fee.
If the median is lower than the average this means there are some very high fees at the top end which has inflated the average.
Pay only what you can afford, and what seems reasonable and fair. You are the only judge of this.
Licensed immigration advisers must:
You can recognise a licensed immigration adviser by this trademark.
If you are dissatisfied with the advice or services provided by your licensed immigration adviser, you can make a complaint [PDF 666KB] to the IAA. You should consider discussing the problem with your adviser in the first instance.
If you are still not satisfied or don’t get a response, you should contact the IAA. This service is free. After your complaint is investigated, it may be referred to the Immigration Advisers Complaints and Disciplinary Tribunal.
If you think a person is providing immigration advice and not licensed, you can report them to the Authority by emailing email@example.com. We take enforcement action against agents that are not licensed. Penalties include a maximum of seven years imprisonment and/or a fine of up to NZ$100,000.
Find out what migrants say about using an immigration adviser.