How to Choose an Immigration Representative, a Consultant or a Lawyer

November 9, 2014 Our Blog

Visa Application ApprovedIf you do decide to hire an immigration representative, choose carefully:

  • Ask someone you trust to recommend someone;
  • Talk to several representatives before you decide which one to hire; check references and find out how long they have been in business;
  • Make sure you understand exactly what services they will provide, and how much they will charge you. Get this information in writing.
  • Make sure they are authorized by the Government of Canada.

The only people authorized by the Government of Canada to charge a fee to represent or advise you on immigration and refugee matters are:

  • lawyers and paralegals who are members in good standing of a Canadian provincial or territorial law society;
  • notaries who are members in good standing of the Chambre des notaires du QuĂ©bec; and
  • immigration consultants who are members in good standing of the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council.

The Government of Canada will not deal with unauthorized immigration representatives who charge a fee for their services.

To find out whether the person you are thinking of hiring to represent you is authorized by the Government of Canada, ask if they are members of one of the organizations listed above. You can then check with the organization to make sure the person is a member in good standing. Contact information for all of these organizations can be found on the CIC website at

Once you have chosen an immigration representative, make sure the representative updates you on your application on a regular basis. Remember—you must accept responsibility for all the information in your application whether you complete it or it is completed by your representative. It is against the law to give false or misleading information to Citizenship and Immigration Canada.