Significant changes to SkillSelect EOI invitation rounds 

Significant change to SkillSelect EOI  invitation rounds 

The DHA have announced changes to the EOI invitation rounds. These will now be conducted once a month.

“SkillSelect invitation rounds for Skilled – Independent (subclass 189) and Skilled – Regional Provisional (subclass 489) will occur once each month, on the 11th day of each month, effective 11 Aug 2018. There is no change to the overall number of invitations provided each month”

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If you have any queries please Contact Us.

Changes 1st July, 2018 – higher points required for GSM visas

Higher points required – GSM points test to increase by 5 points 

As usual at this time of the year, there have been some changes announced to the GSM visa programme by the Department of Home Affairs (DHA). 

From 1 July 2018, applicants will need to score 65 points to eligible to be considered for a GSM visa. This is an increase of 5 points. The effected GSM visa subclasses are:

  • Skilled-Independent (Permanent) Subclass 189;
  • Skilled-Nominated (Permanent) (Subclass 190; and
  • Skilled-Regional Sponsored (Provisional) Subclass 489

The increase is in response to the high demand for GSM visas. It also reflects the high scores that current applicants in the Skill Select Expression of Interest (EOI) pool are claiming. 

For applicants who are invited to apply for a GSM visa prior to 1st July 2018, they won’t be effected by the increase in points. These invited individuals can continue to prepare and submit their application. As is stands currently, any invited applicants will need to ensure that they lodge their applications within the required 60 days. 

If you could like to discuss how this will effect you please Contact Us.

Potential removal of occupations – 1st July, 2018 

Numerous occupations have been flagged for removal and addition

Every Australian financial year – 1st July to 30th June – the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) takes advice and makes amendments to its numerous skilled occupation lists.

Whilst no final decisions have been made for the upcoming new financial year, there have been a number of possible changes flagged. 

Details of these possible changes are detailed here.

The most significant changes are usually those made to the MLTSSL (Medium & Long Term Skilled Shortage List). Any changes made to the MLTSSL would effect applicants for a Subclass 189 Skilled Independent visa OR a Subclass 489 visa (if they are sponsored by an eligible relative). 

Occupations on the MLTSSL that have been flagged for possible change include: 

Flagged for Removal

  • Management Accountant (221112)
  • Agricultural Consultant (234111)
  • Civil Engineering Technician (312212)

Flagged for Addition 

  • Footballers (452411)

If you want  to discuss the potential changes and how they may effect you please get in touch. We will provide any updates on this BLOG.  

Updated – Australian Skilled Occupation Lists (April 2018)

Occupation lists change … again … 

2018 has already seen a number of changes to Australian immigration. Some of these were detailed in our most recent post.

Following on from these changes, last week the Northern Territory have updated the occupations that they will consider nominating for the Skilled Nominated (Subclass 190) Visa or the Skilled Regional (Provisional) (Subclass 489) Visa.

If you would like to look at whether you may be eligible for a General Skilled Migration (GSM) visa, be a state or territory nominated visa – such as the Subclass 190 or Subclass 489 visa – or the Skilled Independent (Subclass 189) visa please check out the list below.

Skilled Occupations – April 2018

If you would like a detailed assessment of your Australian visa options, please  CONTACT US .

Australian immigration changes – new visas and their impact on Australian immigration

The Temporary Skilled Shortage (TSS) visa (Subclass 482), the effect on GSM visas and the Global Talent Visa scheme

A lot has been happening in Australian immigration in 2018. It has started with the skilled list for the Subclass 189 being amended. Some of the states & territories followed and their Subclass 190 & 489 visas have consequently been effected.

Most significant of all is that as fo 18th March, 2018 the Temporary Work (Skilled) Subclass 457 visa has been replaced by the  Temporary Skilled Shortage (TSS) visa (Subclass 482).

The changes and differences between the Subclass 457 & Subclass 482 are significant. We wont attempt to address them all here but will highlight some key points and how these changes may effect your plans and reinforce the importance of the General Skilled Migration (GSM) visa program.

GSM Visa program

The GSM program has remained intact. It significance is shown by the figures below:

  1.  Subclass 189: 176 occupations remain eligible for this visa
  2. Subclass 190: 416 skilled occupations remain eligible for this visa program
  3.  Subclass 489:
    • 475 skilled occupations remain eligible for the State Territory nominated 489 visa program OR
    • 176 occupations remain eligible for the Family Nominated 489 visa programme

Temporary Employer sponsored visas – new Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa (subclass 482) 

As mentioned the temporary Employer Sponsored visa (Subclass 457) has been replaced by the Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa (subclass 482).

Whilst the Subclass 457 could be granted up to 4 years, the Subclass 482 visas can vary:

  1. Short term – up to 2 years if the occupation is on Short Term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL)
  2. Medium term – up to 4 years if on Medium Long Term Skilled Shortages List (MLTSSL) and a new Regional Occupation List (ROL)
  3. Labour Agreement Stream – this is where an employer has negotiated visa arrangements with the Department of Home Affairs (formerly the DIBP Department of Immigration & B0order Patrol).

Applicant requirements:

  • Work experience – Applicants must have a minimum of 2 years
  • English Language – Applicants must meet minimum english language requirements. e.g For an IELTS test they must score 5 overall, but have a minimum score of at least 4.5 on each component
  • Police clearances – Mandatory police clearances.

Sponsor/Employers:

  • Labour-market testing is required (e.g prescribed advertising standards must be met by the employer)
  • Applicant must be nominated in one of the 509 skilled occupations, unless the negotiated Labour Agreement allows otherwise.

Transitional arrangements – Individuals who are already in Australia on a Subclass 457 visa and need to renew this visa or apply for another visa (such as the Subclass 482 or a permanent visa – see below) will need to check with their employer or Migration Agent what their options are. 

Permanent Employer Sponsored visa – Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) Subclass 186 visa & Regional Skilled Migration Scheme (RSMS) Subclass 187 visa

  • Applicants must be under 45
  • Applicants must have worked in Australia for 3 years (it was 2 years) on a 457 visa or 482 visa OR have undertaken a skills assessment under the Direct Entry Scheme
  • Applicants must have at least 3 years work experience
  • Applicants occupation must be on the:
    • MLTSSL for Subclass 186 visas (208 occupations)
    • MLTSSL or ROL list for Subclass 187 (673 occupations)

What are the key takeaways about these changes?

  •  It is more difficult to obtain a visa for Australia under both employer nomination schemes –  temporary and permanent residence. e.g Labour Market testing is required for almost all applications under the TSS visa. This wasn’t the case previously.
  • Students hoping to transfer onto an employer sponsored visa must have at least 2 years experience in the occupation for a temporary visa, or 3 years for a permanent employer visa.
  • Skilled applicants wanting to obtain permanent residency need to be under 45 years – unless some very limited exemptions are met.
  • If an applicant or their spouse is eligible for a GSM visa – 189/190/489 – then it is likely to be their best long term option to migrate to Australia permanently

Final comments

These changes have been a long time coming and even before the details were laid out, they have been widely criticised by the business community. They see this as as a significant disadvantage to recruiting, employing and incentivising skilled migrants to fill positions in Australia.

With this is mind, employers will be forced to look closer at the Australia employment market to fill their workforce needs. This will advantage applicants who hold a GSM visa or intend to apply for a GSM visa.

Global Talent Scheme 

In addition to the above there will be further changes to the Australian immigration program. The Department of Home Affairs have flagged a new scheme known as the Global Talent Scheme. This is a  pilot programme aimed at attracting high-income employees and tech specialists.  It is hoped it will alleviate some of the concerns from employers in Australia that they will miss out of skills need to grow their business due to the restrictions in the new Subclass 482 visa.

It will allow eligible established business and start-up companies seeking talent in STEM fields like biomedicine and agricultural technology to sponsor foreign nationals on a temporary residency basis, as well as offering a pathway to permanent residency. The scheme is due to commence on 1st July. As details emerge we will release them here.

 

If you would like to discuss your options – whether you would be eligible –  then please  Contact Us.

 

Victorian skilled nomination changes – engineers and building occupations

Changes to skilled applications for engineering and building occupations

Applications for engineering and building occupations on the Victorian Nomination List will not be accepted from 16 October 2017 to 12 January 2018 due to the large volume of applications received.

If you would like to discuss your options for a Victorian nominated visa – whether you would be eligible for the Subclass 190 or 489 visa, then please  Contact Us.

 

NSW Skilled Occupation List (SOL) update

The NSW Department of Industry have updated their Skilled Occupation Lists (SOL) effective immediately (25th September, 2017). This update includes both the addition and removal of some occupations.

Applicants seeking to nominated by NSW for a Skilled Nominated (Subclass 190) visa or Skilled Regional (Provisional) (Subclass 489) visa will need to have an occupation on their skilled occupations lists.

NSW – The Premier state

Some of these occupations are able to be nominated under both visa programs, whilst many are also listed for nomination in specific regions of NSW for the Subclass 489 visa.

Occupations added:

  • Chemical Engineer (233111)
  • Electronics Engineer (233411)
  • Industrial Engineer (233511)
  • Production or Plant Engineer (233513)
  • ICT Security Specialist (262112)
  • Architectural Draftsperson (312111)
  • Stonemason (331112)

Occupations removed:

  • Occupational Health & Safety Adviser (251312)
  • Cardiothoracic Surgeon (253512)
  • Neurosurgeon (252513)

The full list of occupations can be found here – Skilled Occupations (2017-18).

If you would like to discuss your options for a NSW nominated visa – whether you would be eligible for the Subclass 190 or 489 visa. then please  Contact Us.

Engineers Australia – skills assessment update

Engineers Australia (EA) have announced a number of changes and updates recently. The below summarises these.

English Language tests – PTE Academic 

From November 1st, 2017 skills assessment applicants can use PTE Academic test results to evidence their english language ability. Until this date only IELTS exams are accepted.

The minimum requirement for an applicant who undertakes the PTE Academic test is a score of 50 in each of the 4 modules – Listening, Writing, Reading and Speaking.

Washington Accord addition – another country added  

Pakistan has been added to the list of approved countries under the Washington Accord. This means that qualifications completed from 2017 onwards will be accepted by Engineers Australia.

This brings the number of signatory countries to the Washington Accord to 19. These include:

* Australia * Canada * China * Chinese Taipei * Hong Kong * India *  Ireland * Japan * Korea * Malaysia * New Zealand * Russia * Singapore *  South Africa * Sri Lanka * Turkey * United States * United Kingdom * Pakistan

Skilled Migration

Engineering Registration Overseas 

If an applicant for a skills Assessment has been practicing in a country where Engineering is a regulated profession, such as Pakistan or the Philippines, they  must include evidence of registration in the application.

Processing Times 

The current waiting times skills assessments applications are:

  • Australian Qualifications And Accords Qualifications Assessment: 6 weeks
  • Australian Qualifications And Accords Qualifications Assessment with Fast Track: 15 working days
  • Competency Demonstration Report: 6 weeks
  • Competency Demonstration Report with Fast Track: 15 working days

If you have any questions about how this effects you eligibility and your visa options please Contact Us.

Queensland GSM state nomination – occupations removed

Removal of occupations for Queensland

Queensland have recently announced the removal of a number of occupations from their State nomination lists. These occupations, in addition to 233914 Engineering Technologists which was removed in early August,  have been removed due to the high numbers of Expression of Interest (EOI) lodged.

The removed occupations are:

  • 221111 Accountant (general)
  • 261311 Analyst Programmer
  • 263111 Computer Network & Systems Engineer
  • 262111 Database Administrator
  • 261312 Developer Programmer
  • 261111 ICT Business Analyst
  • 313112 ICT Customer Support Officer
  • 263211 ICT Quality Assurance Engineer
  • 262112 ICT Security Specialist
  • 263212 ICT Support Engineer
  • 263213 ICT Systems Test Engineer
  • 261313 Software Engineer
  • 261314 Software Tester
  • 262113 Systems Administrator
  • 261112 Systems Analyst
  • 313113 Web Administrator
  • 312111 Architectural Draftsperson
  • 611211 Insurance Agent
  • 232511 Interior Designer
  • 221112 Management Acct
  • 233512 Mechanical Engineer
  • 225311 Public Relations Professional
  • 251511 Hospital Pharmacists
  • 251513 Retail Pharmacist

If these changes effect your visa options, and you want to discuss what other opportunities there may be please Contact Us.

Australian skilled migration overview

Australian skilled migration overview

Migration is a part of life in every nation: people are consistently looking for something new and want to have different cultural experiences, and the opportunity to  share their knowledge and skills.

Australia is considered to be a land of unpredictable and wonderful nature, as well as a great place for job opportunities in a number of industries and professions. It is known as “the Land Down Under”. It annually attracts hundreds of thousands of people from all over the world, a significant number who want stay permanently.

In order to stay permanently applicants need to stay on top of the visa requirements and legislation. Immigration legislation is always changing and not everyone can get a visa for the Great Southern Land. Applicants primarily need to have the right education and job skills.

There are two predominant ways of getting a visa for Australia.

To apply for a Skilled Independent (Subclass 189) visa under the General Skilled Migration Visa program, applicants need to review the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) and confirm if their occupation is available for nomination. There is also a points test, based on a number of different factors.

If you are not eligible for a Skilled Independent (Subclass 189) visa then you can look at alternate GSM visas. These visas are state or territory nominated visas. They include both a permanent residency option – Skilled Nominated (Subclass 190) visa – and a temporary residency option – Skilled regional (Subclass 489) visa. You will need to confirm if your occupation is on the the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) or the  Short-term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL). You will then need to to check if a state or territory will nominate your occupation, and whether you fir that criteria.

If an applicant is not eligible for a GSM visa, they can look at employer sponsored visa opportunities. Applicants who are offered a job in Australia may be eligible for either a temporary or permanent residency employer sponsored visa. The most common employer sponsored visas are the Temporary Work (Skilled) Subclass 457 visa and the Employer Nomination Scheme visa (Subclass 186) visa.

A job offer can also assist with a GSM visa. Either, by being able to claim additional points for skilled employment experience in Australia, or to be eligible to be nominated for a state  or territory visa such as the Subclass 190 or Subclass 489.

In practical terms, if you are skilled professional and are specific in where you want to live e.g. Architect Jobs in Brisbane, you may find a genuine opportunity that you are eligible for. With a willing employer offering you a job, you may initially be sponsored for a Temporary Work (Skilled) Subclass 457 visa. Which may may then lead on to the permanent employer  sponsored  Subclass 186 visa, or a GSM option.

There are various employment websites that can help you find job in Australia, either before you migrate or once you have your visa. Rulla.com is one of those. Non Australian residents, as well as Australian visa holders, can look at websites such as Rulla to see if there are employment opportunities in the field and location that they desire.

If you can determine on the basis of your skills and education what visa you are eligible for, and where you want to do it, this will help you create the life you want in Australia.