A New Start: immigration to Australia

A New Start

A New Start – how to approach immigration

When immigrating to a new country you need to understand your visa options and what they mean for you in the short and long term.

Any new start in life generally means that, unless you are the exception, you will have some doubt and feel a little bit nervous about what lies ahead. Although one way of removing some of that doubt is through some research and planning.

When considering immigration to Australia this is particularly true. I have often seen people and businesses focus on the result in getting a visa. But in the short term they take some risks and rush through things, and decide on options that may not be the best path for themselves or their family or the business. In a lot of cases all they do is increase the length of time and cost it takes to get the visa that they need and expose themselves to great risk.

In the long term there is a high chance that circumstances will change and what drove a person to a new country will not remain the same. Often those who never thought they would leave Australia do, and those that were looking at a short term adventure end up wanting to stay. Or even more problematic they leave and then want to come back.

During the GFC there were plenty of stories of people having to leave Australia, after living there for a decade, because they held visas conditional on being sponsored by an employer but were made redundant. They made the mistake of taking short term tax and cash incentives instead of securing their families future by applying for Australian permanent residency.  I have also seen business owners establish but then sell businesses before they have the right to remain permanently approved. I have seen companies enforce human resources policies based on their home country laws that were completely at odds with Australian policy and law.

However, if all these people and businesses had asked the right questions or understood their situation by getting the right advice, they could have made an educated decision and managed their own risks. It would have come at a cost but not the cost they were ultimately exposed too.

So taking the time to understand all your visa options, the conditions attached to them and what they mean is imperative. You should understand in significant detail what a visa entitles you and your family to do, what public services you can access, what is the pathway to permanent residency or citizenship, whether you have to remain in the place you settle or with the employer you are sponsored by, what rights you have to buying property, what you as an employer need to consider outside of just getting an employee a visa and possibly most importantly who can help you answer those questions. Granted the list of questions can be endless but they can be broken down into the following;

  • Why am I moving?
  • Can I get there?
  • How do I get there?
  • What can I do when I get there?
  • If I need to leave what does this mean?
  • Who can help me?

So whatever your circumstances are, if you are looking at immigration to Australia and a new start, then asking yourself these questions will put you on the right track to a successful and exciting new chapter for you or your businesses life.