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Professional responsibilities

Acting in accordance with the law

The Code sets out the specific legislation that immigration advisers must act in accordance with.

Clause 3:

A licensed immigration adviser must:

  1. if operating in New Zealand, act in accordance with New Zealand law
  2. if operating offshore, act in accordance with the law of the jurisdiction they are operating in, and
  3. whether in New Zealand or offshore, act in accordance with New Zealand immigration legislation, including the Immigration Act 2009, the Immigraiton Advisers Licensing Act 2007 and any applicable regulations

Clause 3 requires advisers to comply at all times with the laws of the country they are operating in.

In professional practice this means that advisers must understand and abide by the relevant laws when operating their businesses.

Clause 3(c) requires that advisers must act in accordance with New Zealand immigration legislation, including the Immigration Act 2009, the Immigration Advisers Licensing Act 2007 and any applicable regulations made under either Act. This includes the Licensed Immigration Advisers Code of Conduct 2014 and the Immigration Advisers Competency Standards 2015.

It is an offence under the Immigration Advisers Licensing Act 2007 to employ or contract an unlicensed or non-exempt person as an immigration adviser. Advisers should be careful to ensure that clerical staff or other unlicensed staff do not provide immigration advice. Here are some of the many decisions from the Immigration Advisers Complaints and Disciplinary Tribunal that refer to this issue:

Matheis v Ling

Decision: [2015] NZIACDT 91 (8 October 2015) (PDF, 184KB)

Chand v Devi

Decision: [2015] NZIACDT 74 (12 June 2015) (PDF, 152KB)

Penalty Decision: [2016] NZIACDT 4 (14 January 2016)

L v Kim

Decision: [2015] NZIACDT 73 (4 June 2015) (PDF, 153KB)

Penalty Decision: [2015] NZIACDT 108 (22 December 2015) (PDF, 186KB)

Slinger v Zhou

Decision: [2015] NZIACDT 38 (15 April 2015) (PDF, 246KB)

Penalty Decision: [2015] NZIACDT 87 (27 August 2015) (PDF, 181KB)

Kong v Li

Decision: [2015] NZIACDT 33 (23 March 2015)

Interim Decision: [2015] NZIACDT 59 (15 May 2015) (PDF, 135KB)

Shankar v Ahuja

Decision: [2015] NZIACDT 36 (31 March 2015) (PDF, 187KB)

Penalty Decision: [2015] NZIACDT 106 (21 December 2015) (PDF, 196KB)

Mohammadalibeigy v Yap

Decision: [2015] NZIACDT 7 (13 February 2015) (PDF, 92KB)

Penalty Decision: [2015] NZIACDT 64 (25 May 2015) (PDF, 182KB)

IAA v van Zyl

Decision: [2012] NZIACDT 37 (31 July 2012) (PDF, 156 KB)

Penalty Decision: [2012] NZIACDT 59 (11 September 2012) (PDF, 77 KB)

NQE v Tan

Decision: [2013] NZIACDT 37 (13 June 2013) (PDF, 195 KB)

Penalty Decision: [2013] NZIACDT 46 (1 August 2013) (PDF, 130 KB)

This decision refers to the scope of what is immigration advice:

Ekanayake v Registrar of Immigration Advisers

Decision: [2015] NZIACDT 67 (28 May 2015) (PDF, 177KB)

What has changed compared to the 2010 Code?

2010 Code – required all advisers to act in accordance with New Zealand laws

2014 Code – advisers must:

  1. if operating in New Zealand, act in accordance with New Zealand law
  2. if operating offshore, act in accordance with the law of the jurisdiction they are operating in, and
  3. whether in New Zealand or offshore, act in accordance with New Zealand immigration legislation, including the Immigration Act 2009, the Immigraiton Advisers Licensing Act 2007 and any applicable regulations.