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Frequently Asked Questions


1)   What is permanent residence in South Africa?
2)
   How can I become a permanent resident of South Africa?
3)  
How can I find out if I am eligible to become a permanent resident of South Africa?
4)
  What can I expect to receive in response to my free online assessment submission?
5)
  How do I know that I qualify?
6)
  Why do I need the services of an attorney?
7) 
 Why attorneys and not migration agents?
8)  
How do I know your law firm is legitimate?
9)
  Aside from the legal fees, are there any other fees I must pay?
10) 
How long does the application process take?
11) 
Will I have to attend an interview?
12)
Do I need to have my qualifications assessed before applying for a visa?


1. What is permanent residence in South Africa?
Permanent residence means you are allowed to live in South Africa indefinitely, with unlimited right to work, engage in business, own property, study and do any of the things a citizen can do except cast a vote in an election. This can only happen once you have naturalised as a South African citizen. Spending too long outside the country can result in loss of permanent residence.

2. How can I become a permanent resident of South Africa?
The only way you can become a permanent resident of South Africa is to be granted a permanent residence permit by the Ministry of Home Affairs in South Africa, either inside or outside the country. For full details of the requirements for the many different categories of permanent residence permits, see our immigration page.

3. How can I find out if I am eligible to become a permanent resident of South Africa?
If you are interested in migrating to South Africa, please fill out the Free Assessment which will be assessed by Accurate Immigration Service's appointed South African immigration attorney in accordance with the selection criteria established by the South African Immigration Act and its Regulations, at no charge to you, within 48 to 72 hours from the time your questionnaire is received.

4. What can I expect to receive in response to my free online assessment submission?
A specialist immigration attorney will personally assess your eligibility for immigration to South Africa and, if it is determined that you may qualify for immigration you will receive a detailed response together with a quotation for the fees. This response takes the form of a thorough assessment, and includes details of any other requirements that you will have to satisfy, such as English language, health or character checks. Due to the very large numbers of people looking for immigration solutions around the world, it is only possible for responses to be sent to people whom our lawyers assess as potentially qualified for migration to South Africa. People who are assessed as not qualified will not receive a response. Please note that all information is kept in the strictest confidence and, for your protection, is not stored on any of our servers.

5. How do I know that I qualify?
Our South African attorneys enjoy a  100% success rate with clients who retain them via the internet because they do not accept cases that are borderline or with no hope of success. If you have been positively assessed, it is because our lawyers believe that stand a very good chance of being approved for migration to South Africa with their assistance. The firm thrives on successful immigration cases and referrals from satisfied clients and, in addition to individual case also handles large corporate applications for most key multinational companies operating in South Africa. Success of an application is subject to the correctness of the information you have given to them.

6. Why do I need the services of an attorney and why can't I apply for migration to South Africa on my own?
You can apply for migration to South Africa on your own. There is absolutely no legal requirement that you get help from an attorney or anyone else. You can also lodge your tax declaration without help, do your accounts without help, represent yourself in Court, and do lots of other things on your own without getting help from a professional. But why would you? In some countries, things have to be done through facilitators or middlemen because the bureaucracy is corrupt or hopelessly inefficient.  Immigration law is extremely complex and changes frequently. In some instances, failure to provide the correct documents within a given time frame can result in an application be refused which would otherwise have been successful. Also, if your application cannot be approved under one category an experienced attorney may be able to direct you towards another possibility.

Our attorneys assist you to provide exactly the information expected by the South African Department of Home Affairs and other authorities and ensure that the application forms are correctly filled out. They draft the written legal submissions that accompany the application package and draw the authorities' attention to the relevant law and policies on which your case is based. As well, they advise you of the procedures involved in satisfying other requirements such as health and police clearances.

7. Why attorneys and not migration agents?
South Africa immigration law requires anyone giving paid assistance in immigration cases to be a "registered migration practitioner" or an admitted attorney or advocate. Of course, our attorneys are duly registered and will provide confirmation of this with their assessment. However, becoming a "registered migration practitioner" is not as difficult as it sounds. No formal qualifications are required, and the applicant only sits a basic written test.

There are many such agents in South Africa, some very good, some not so good. On the other hand, there are only about twenty specialist immigration attorneys in the country. To become an accredited specialist you have to be a fully qualified attorney to start with, with several years of practice, predominately in immigration work. Accurate Immigration appoints only qualified attorneys who have been registered as such by one of the Provincial Law Societies of South Africa. Confirmation of accreditation will be provided with your assessment.

8. How do I know your law firm is legitimate?
Accurate Immigration Services is not a law firm. It appoints attorneys for the specific country to which you wish to immigrate, in this case South Africa. Should you need verification of authenticity you are most welcome to request this directly from us.

9. Aside from the legal fees, are there any other fees I must pay?
Almost all permit applications for South Africa are subject to an application fee payable to the South African government, payable in advance and non-refundable. There are also local fees that you may have to pay for obtaining documents, translations, medicals, police clearances, etc. Our attorneys will advise you of the statutory fees payable in respect of your application when they do your assessment, however, it must be understood that the South African government reserves the right to change its fees without notice.

10. How long does the application process take?
Unfortunately, we can't always answer this question. All we can promise to do is to minimise delays by ensuring that the correct documents and information are provided to the authorities on time.

11. Will I have to attend an interview?
Interviews are compulsory for permanent residence applications and are discretionary for other types of permits. Some spousal and other relatives permit applicants may be called for interview at the relevant South African Embassy overseas, in which case it will usually not be possible for our lawyer to attend.

12. Do I need to have my qualifications assessed before applying for a visa?
In the work permit and skilled migration categories it is necessary to obtain a formal assessment by the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) before you can lodge your permit application. This applies only if your qualifications were obtained at a University or other Tertiary educational institution outside of South Africa. Our lawyers can assist with the preparation of applications for assessment and will advise you of the requirements.



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Attorneys appointed by Accurate Immigration are Regulated by the Law Society of South Africa.
Accurate Immigration's SA Immigration Lawyers are specialist practitioners in
Immigration Law for South Africa.


The information on this page is intended to be general in nature and should not be construed as applying to the reader's individual set of circumstances. It does not constitute legal advice. Eligibility requirements and the application of laws vary on a case-by-case basis. Furthermore, Immigration laws, regulations and policies are always subject to change at any time without advance notice.
2001 - 2007