Lawyer Deregulation Bill passed
On 15 June 2020, the Migration Amendment (Regulation of Migration Agents) Bill 2019 (the Migration Agents Bill) and the Migration Agents Registration Application Charge Amendment (Rates of Charge) Bill 2019 were passed with both the Coalition and the Labor Party supporting the bill.
The purpose of the the Migration Agents Bill is to amend the Migration Act 1958 in order to deregulate the migration advice industry, in particular to remove lawyers who hold unrestricted practicing certificates from regulation by the Migration Agents Registration Authority (MARA).
On the other hand, the Rates of Charge Bill is to amend the Charge Act to ensure that a migration agent who paid the non-commercial registration application charge in relation to their current period of registration, but gives immigration assistance otherwise than on a non-commercial basis, is liable to pay an adjusted charge.
The Migration Agents Bill comprises six Schedules whereas the rates of Charge Bill consists of on Schedule.
Sections 1-3 of the Migration Agents Bill commence on Royal Assent. Schedules 1 and 2 commence on the earlier of a day to be fixed by Proclamation, or nine months after Royal Assent.
Sections 3, 4 and 6 commence on the earlier of the day to be fixed by Proclamation, or six months after Royal Assent.
Schedule 5 commences at the same time as Schedule 1 to the Rates of Charge Bill.
Sections 1-3 of the Rates of Charge Bill commences on Royal Assent. All other provisions commence on the earlier of a day to be fixed by Proclamation or six months after Royal Assent.**
**Source: Bills Digest, Parliament of Australia, Department of Parliamentary Service