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.

Assurance of Support (AoS) changes reversed

AoS income test to revert back to pre-April 2018 requirements

As indicated in our most recent blog post the Assurance of Support changes that came into in April have been reversed.

Individuals acting as Assurers of Support will need to meet the income test as it was prior to the April changes. This will be a great relief to all applicants

Parent visas: Sponsorship rules reset as government completes backflip

If you have any queries please Contact Us.

Significant changes to Parent visas changes announced

Substantial increases to the AoS bond & income requirements 

The Department of Home Affairs (DHA) have announced some major changes to the Assurance of Support (AoS) requirements. These changes are significant and will greatly effect parent visa applicants. This includes those who have not yet lodged this visa, or have, but have not had their AoS requested prior to 1st April, 2018. 

The primary changes are: 

Assurance of Support (AoS) bond

From the 1st April, 2019 the ten year bond requirement will increase for both the main applicant and any additional applicants. The respective increases are: 

  • Main applicant – the bond will be increased from $10,000 AUD to $15,000 AUD. 
  • Additional applicant/s – the bond will be increased from $4,000 AUD to $6,000 AUD. 

Assurer/s – income requirements doubled

The AoS can be provided by from 1 to 3 Assurers. To act as an Assurer the individual must meet an income test. The income test requirements to be met will vary depending on the number of applicants (assurees) to be assured and the number of family members in the assurers family. 

The income test was changed retrospectively to take effect as at 1st April, 2018. These new income test requirements have in some cases doubled. When the AoS is requested, before the bond is made, the assurer/s must be able to show they meet the new income requirements for both the current financial year and the previous two financial years.

What will be the effect of these changes?

The changes, particularly the income requirements, are quite significant. Some individuals, including those who have lodged their visas already, may find it difficult to find assurers who meet these new requirements. This could mean an unsuccessful visa application.    

If you want to understand how these changes will effect you, and what you can do to minimise the risk of an unsuccessful visa, please get in touch. 

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 .

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.

ACT Migration Program closed to overseas applicants

ACT Nomination – closed for overseas applicants immediately

With immediate effect, as of the 23rd August, the ACT Skilled Migration program is closed to overseas applicants.

The exceptions to this are those applicants who have on occupation on this list, are applicants who have close ties to the ACT through family members, or a job offer in the ACT.

Whilst this is a disappointing outcome, unfortunately it is not unexpected. When we announced on our blog that the ACT 2017-18 occupations had been released, we also asked the question “How long will they last this year?”.

The answer is that it lasted from the 5th July, 2017 until yesterday. An improvement on the 13 days the occupation list was open for last year.

If this closure effects you, and you want to discuss what other opportunities you may have, please Contact Us.