Including Dependents On Your Visa Application
The Australian Government has introduced far reaching changes to the definition of Member of the Family Unit (MoFU) for the purpose of most visa applications. There are now significant limitations on the class of persons that can be considered part of MoFU and hence be included in a visa application.
Character Assessment of Australian Sponsors of Partner Visa Applications
From 18 November 2016, Australian citizen and permanent resident Sponsors of Partner Visa and Prospective Marriage Visa applications (“a partner visa”), are subject to character testing. In line with current Australian Government strategies to reduce family violence in the Australian community, the new provisions have been introduced to prevent Australians who have committed a relevant offence from being able to sponsor someone for a partner visa.
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Our People

   
Principal Solicitor
 

Aristotle Paipetis

LLB UNSW 

LLM London


 

Aristotle is the Principal Solicitor at Visa Lawyers Australia. He is a Solicitor and Barrister in the Supreme Court of New South Wales and the High Court of Australia. Aristotle is also a Registered Migration Agent (MARN: 0006846).

In over 25 years of legal practice, Aristotle has covered the full spectrum of immigration and citizenship law. He is well versed in developing appropriate strategies to successfully securing Australian visas for his clients. Aristotle oversees the securing of temporary and permanent work visas for all of our corporate clients as well as our individual clients. 

Aristotle is integrally involved in providing strategic advice on high level corporate appointments and Distinguished Talent visas (subclass 124 and 858). 

Aristotle is regularly invited to present to corporate human resources and management teams as well as professional bodies on changes in and aspects of immigration law relevant to the organisation in question. He is also the author of the Skilled Migration chapter of The Immigration Kit (9th Edition).

Aristotle has extensive expertise and is skilled in assisting both our corporate and individual clients with difficult cases. Aristotle has broad industry experience including working with the Higher Education Sector, Healthcare and Health Services Providers, Engineering, Banking & Finance, Entertainment, Fashion & Luxury Goods, Hospitality and Legal Services.

He has successfully achieved the revocation of visa cancellations, involving visa condition breaches or character/criminal issues. He has also obtained improved immigration outcomes for unlawful persons.

Aristotle obtained his Bachelor of Laws from the University of New South Wales, Australia and his Masters of Laws from Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London, UK.

 
Lawyers & Registered Migration Agents

Jeffrey Bennett

BA HSU LLB UNSW

 

Jeffrey is a Solicitor and Barrister in the Supreme Court of New South Wales. He is also a Registered Migration Agent (MARN: 1280151).

Working with our corporate clients across a number of industries, including digital media, education, engineering services, environmental consultancies, financial services, healthcare, hospitality and manufacturing, Jeffrey has gained a wealth of experience in delivering effective migration advice across a range of complex applications.

Jeffrey has experience across a broad range of permanent and temporary visa streams, including employer sponsored and nominated visas (subclasses 186, 187 and TSS / 482 - formerly subclass 457), training (subclass 407) and research visas (subclass 408) and skilled independent visas (subclass 189).

Jeffrey understands the impact of timing and financial constraints, when assisting both our corporate and individual clients. In liaising with our corporate clients, Jeffrey ensures that at all stages of an application both the employer and applicant are well informed and all queries are addressed promptly.

   
   
Nick Biscoe

BA LLB ANU 


MARN: 1799775
Nick is a Solicitor and Barrister of the Supreme Court of New South Wales and the High Court of Australia. He is also a Registered Migration Agent (MARN: 1799775). Nick joined our team after graduating with a Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Arts (Political Science) from the Australian National University. 

Nick assists our corporate clients with all aspects of employer linked visas including highly specialised work visas (subclass 400) as well as other subclasses including Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186), Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (subclass 187), Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS / subclass 482 - formerly subclass 457) and Training and Research (subclasses 407 and 408, respectively). 

Nick plays a role within the practice researching the advice that we provide to businesses and organisations on matters including visa options, compliance with immigration law, and risk management strategies. 
   
   

Louis Do

BA LLB UTS

MARN: 1569708


  Louis is a Solicitor and a Registered Migration Agent (MARN: 1569708). Louis also has a strong   background in advocacy having spent some time practising as a barrister in NSW.

  Louis has assisted our corporate clients across numerous industries including higher education,   engineering, information and communications technology, healthcare and manufacturing. In       working with our corporate clients, Louis has developed experience across a broad range of       permanent and temporary visas including the Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186),       Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (187), Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS / subclass 482;     formerly the subclass 457) and Training (subclass 407) and Research (subclass 408) streams.  
  In addition, he has assisted our clients with citizenship applications, partner visas (subclasses  820 and 801) and supports our Principal Solicitor in preparing written submissions and review applications to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

Louis is also involved in analysing immigration law changes and in researching the advice we provide organisations on matters including visa options, compliance with immigration law and risk management strategies. 
   
   

Sean Loughland

BA LLB UTS


MARN: 1686913

Sean is a Solicitor and Barrister in the Supreme Court of New South Wales and the High Court of Australia. He is also a Registered Migration Agent (MARN: 1686913).

Sean has experience working with organisations from a range of industries including higher education, construction, engineering services, and information technology.

Sean has assisted on permanent and temporary visa stream matters, including employer sponsored and nominated visas (subclasses 186, 187 and TSS/subclass 482 - formerly subclass 457), temporary activity visas (subclasses 400, 407 and 408), partner visas (subclasses 100, 309, 801 and 820) and obtaining Australian citizenship. 

Sean plays a key role within our practice in analysing immigration law changes, and in researching the advice that we provide to businesses and organisations on matters including visa options, compliance with immigration law, and risk management strategies. 

Sean also has a background working with refugees and asylum seekers on protection visa applications (subclasses 866 and 790) and various other immigration law matters for both the Refugee Advice & Casework Service and Asylum Seekers Centre.

   
   

Kristie Mellor

BA LLB 

Wollongong 


MARN: 1799833


Kristie is a Solicitor and Barrister in the Supreme Court of New South Wales and the High Court of Australia. She is also a Registered Migration Agent (MARN: 1799833). Kristie joined our team after working for a year with the Immigration Rights & Advice Centre (IARC).

Kristie assist our corporate clients with employer linked visas. She has also assisted numerous clients in obtaining onshore and offshore parent (subclasses 864 and 143), partner (subclasses 801 and 820), and child (subclass 101 and 802) visas as well as assisting with complex citizenship applications. Two other areas of specialty for Kristie are distinguished talent (subclasses 124 and 858) and medical treatment visas (subclass 602).

Given the complex nature of immigration law, Kristie is committed to providing ongoing support and guidance to clients throughout the application process. 

Kristie obtained her Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Arts from the University of Wollongong. Kristie has also worked as a tutor to the high-school aged children of refugee families. 
   
   

Rachael Smith

BMedSc LLB UTS



Rachael is Solicitor and Barrister in the Supreme Court of New South Wales and the High Court of Australia. Matthew joined our team after working in the not-for-profit sector assisting clients with humanitarian and related immigration issues.

In working with our corporate clients Rachael has gained experience across a broad range of permanent and temporary visas, including the following subclasses: Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186), Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (subclass 187), Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS / subclass 482 - formerly subclass 457) as well as Training and Research (subclasses 407 and 408, respectively). 

Rachael graduated with a Bachelor of Medical Science and LLB from University of Technology Sydney.
   
   

Jenny Zeng

BCom LLB Monash

 

Jenny is a Solicitor and Barrister in the Supreme Court of New South Wales and the High Court of Australia. She is also a Registered Migration Agent (MARN: 1280144).

Jenny has assisted numerous clients in obtaining onshore and offshore parent (subclasses 864 and 143) and partner (subclasses 801 and 820) visas as well as assisting with complex citizenship applications. Given the complex nature of immigration law, Jenny is committed to providing ongoing support and guidance to clients throughout the application process.

Jenny also assists our corporate clients and has experience in obtaining temporary (Temporary Skill Shortage; TSS / subclass 482 - formerly subclass 457) and permanent (subclasses 186 and 187) employer sponsored visas in industries including facilities management, healthcare, higher education, hospitality, marketing & media and trades. Jenny has dealt with various corporate structures in the context of employer related applications such as trusts and businesses operating exclusively overseas.

Prior to joining Visa Lawyers Australia, Jenny worked with a practice in Victoria where she gained experience working on tribunal reviews and appeals.

   
   
General Manager
 

Tatiana Paipetis

BSc(Psychol) 

PhD UNSW

Tatiana is the firm’s General Manager. She has over 15 years of experience in consulting to industry, including Engineering, Healthcare, the Higher Education Sector, Information Technology, Logistics & Transportation, Telecommunications, Renewables, and Banking & Finance.

Tatiana oversees VLA's customer service, internal operations, marketing and business strategy. Prior to joining VLA, she worked as a management consultant for a large global consulting firm. Working in Australia and overseas, she gained experience with leading Australian and global corporations in both business strategy and operations management. 

Tatiana is responsible for ensuring the smooth operation of our systems and processes and for seamlessly integrating new client accounts into our workflow. She is actively involved in tailoring our systems and reporting to meet each individual corporate client’s requirements. 

Tatiana is a key contact point within our organisation for all corporate clients. Tatiana regularly liaises with our corporate client managers to review customer service, to assist in prioritising urgent, high profile and/or strategically important matters and to ensure that the VLA team is familiar with the specific needs, processes and requirements of each of our corporate accounts. 

With respect to the Distinguished Talent visas handled by our firm, Tatiana plays a key role in researching, interviewing and preparing the submissions required which accompany the application documents. 

Tatiana obtained her Bachelor of Science (Psychology), graduating with the University Medal, and PhD in Behavioural Neuroscience from the University of New South Wales.

   


Legal Support & Records Management
Carolyn Arico

Data Analyst

BSc Syd 
PhD UNSW
Carolyn is VLA's Data Analyst, supporting our lawyers in the preparation, synthesis and entry of data onto application forms.  She also supports our Manager in developing processes to standardise work practises across our firm and in undertaking research on special projects. 

Carolyn recently completed her PhD in Behavioural Neuroscience at the University of New South Wales. She is currently undertaking a Masters of Public Health at the University of Sydney. 
   
   

Felicity Doukakis

Legal Support

BMus(Perf) Syd

Felicity supports our lawyers and manager in all aspects of administration, file management and data entry. Felicity is one of the friendly voices answering and directing our telephone calls.

Felicity has a Bachelor of Music (Performance) and plays the violin professionally. She has played in musicals including: Shrek, Miss Saigon, Wicked and Legally Blonde. 


 
   

Bianca Tini Brunozzi 

Legal Support

Bianca is currently in her final year of her LLB at the University of Sydney. Bianca supports our lawyers and manager with document preparation. She also supports our Principal Solicitor by undertaking legal research and assisting on special projects. Bianca is one of the friendly voices answering and directing our telephone calls.

Bianca is passionate about immigration law and aims to practice in the area on graduation.