The journey of migrating to a new country, especially New Zealand, is no cakewalk, as at every step you require guidance. Undoubtedly, having the right advice can make all the difference.
Our ongoing series on licensed immigration advisers in Auckland intends to assist you in your pursuit to find the best licensed immigration adviser.
The sixth part of our series features Madhu Behl, Director of M&M Immigration Consultants Limited, an immigration consultancy based in Epsom.
In 2006, Behl moved to New Zealand from India. Like many migrants, Behl, who is originally from New Delhi, came to the Kiwi land as an international student to pursue Masters of Law from the University of Waikato.
Talking about her journey to become a licensed immigration adviser, she says, “I came from a legal background as I was a practicing lawyer in India, and when I did my masters, I got a glimpse of immigration law and that’s how my interest in the immigration industry began.”
“In the course of time, I also started working as an Advocacy Adviser for Shakti, a non-governmental organisation that supports women who are victims of domestic violence. During my six-year tenure, I assisted migrants in legal matters such as obtaining protection orders, parenting orders, and residence under domestic violence. My work experience in New Zealand put me in a good stead for a career advocating for migrants from all corners of the world.”
Behl completed a Graduate Certificate in New Zealand Immigration Advice from Bay of Plenty Polytechnic in July 2013. “I was granted a full license to operate as a New Zealand immigration adviser in August 2013 under license number 201300492, and then I started my own consultancy M&M immigration Consultants. Our aim is to make the migration process seamless for our clients,” she says.
Talking about her views on the recent changes in immigration policies, especially with a requirement for 6.5 bands in IELTS for the principal applicant under Skilled Migrant category in permanent residency application and eligibility points being raised to 160 for the same, Behl says, “I see it as a positive change. I believe that it is important for anyone who is applying under the Skilled Migrant Category to be a competent user of English language. These rules are mainly going to affect those who came to New Zealand without giving IELTS test. Moreover, I think the government wants to grow the entire New Zealand and not only Auckland, and hence those 30 extra points. New Zealand needs quality skilled migrants for its growth and there are no two ways about it.”
Moving from the topic, we asked Behl about her views on the advantages/disadvantages of being a female immigration adviser in an industry hugely dominated by males. “I feel no discrimination being a woman in this industry,” she said. “In fact, having a background in law and having worked in a community organisation has given me loads of patience. There have been many occasions where my knowledge of the law, including family law and refugee and humanitarian law helps in strongly advocating for my clients.”
Her advice to those seeking to be licensed immigration advisers: “It is no cakewalk to be an immigration adviser, as it brings a lot of responsibility. Your clients put a lot of trust in you and hope for a better outcome. As a licensed adviser you have an obligation to provide honest, accurate advice, and you need to have a sound knowledge of all the latest immigration instructions.”
Madhu Behl can be contacted on +64 9 6315219
Address: 4-1 King Edward Ave Epsom, Auckland 1023, New Zealand
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