Update: Australian visa program changes – announcement due 6th October 2020

Australian visa 2020/2021 

As mentioned previously in this blog, changes to the Australian visa program are due to be announced from 6th October, 2020. This date marks the day the delayed 2020 budget is to be released.

While the details haven’t been confirmed it is expected that the Australian visa program numbers will be greatly reduced, and focused on skills that assist Australia’s economic recovery.

It is expected that the states/territories will also announce their nomination programs shortly too.

If you want to discuss how you are effected, your current visa application or your visa options going forward please Contact Us

  • Office: +44 (0)800772 0570
  • Mobile: + 44 (0)7710 649194
  • Email: mark@cargilmigration.com

 

UPDATE: General Skilled Migration (GSM) program – August 2020

All eyes on 6th October 2020 

Limited GSM nominations

As we advised in early July the GSM program remains pretty much closed. The DHA aren’t inviting many individuals to apply for a Subclass 189 Skilled Independent visa, nor are the states/territories nominating many applicants for a Subclass 190 Skilled Nominated visa or the Subclass 491 Skilled Work Regional visa.

Where invites are being issued – these can vary by state/territory – they are focused on applicants who are in areas of critical skills and sectors and/or those already residing in Australia.

Australian Federal budget – 6th October 2020

It is however expected that the nomination limitations will change from the 6th October 2020. This is when the Australian government is due to release their budget. The budget will establish the number of visas applications available at both a national level – Subclass 189 visa – and for the states/territory programs – Subclass 190 & 491 visa. Once the states/territories are allocated with their visa caps we can expect confirmation of the occupations on their skilled occupation lists and other criteria applicants will need to meet.

Status of each State/Territory

An overview of the states/territories nomination status as of now is below:

ACT

“As you are all aware, the migration landscape is very different in 2020-21.  The Australian Government has directed the ACT to restrict nominations to Canberra residents with skills critical to supporting the ACT’s post pandemic economic recovery. An interim number of nomination places has been allocated until the Commonwealth Budget is announced on 6 October 2020.”

NEW SOUTH WALES

“NSW has been provided a limited number of interim nomination places for the 2020–21 financial year.

Because our nomination places are limited, we have made some temporary adjustments to our application process. These adjustments will be reviewed if more nomination places are provided to us later in the financial year.”

NORTHERN TERRITORY

“The Australian Government has not yet allocated nomination quotas to the states and territories for the 2020 to 2021 program year.

At this stage, onshore General Skilled Migration (GSM) nomination applications and all Business Investment and Innovation Program nomination applications will continue to be accepted and assessed, but no nominations can be issued until the Northern Territory has been allocated quotas. Offshore GSM nomination applications remain closed. We will update as further information becomes available.”

QUEENSLAND

“BSMQ has been advised by the Department of Home Affairs (HA) that it will not be in a position to open the 2020/21 migration program on 1 July 2020. As a consequence, BSMQ’s business and skilled migration program will remain closed on 1 July 2020 until further notice.”

TASMANIA

“All new applications lodged after 1pm (AEST), Tuesday 25th August 2020 must meet the minimum requirements of their chosen nomination category and demonstrate that the applicant is critical to supporting Tasmania’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and recovery.

This requirement will be reviewed after the Federal Budget in October when full details of the 2020-21 nomination allocations and requirements are announced by the Department of Home Affairs.”

SOUTH AUSTRALIA

“The Commonwealth Department of Home Affairs has provided a limited number of skilled and business visa nomination places to the Government of South Australia up until the Federal Budget is delivered on 6 October 2020.”

VICTORIA 

“The Commonwealth Department of Home Affairs has provided a limited number of visa nomination places to the Victorian Government up until the Federal Budget is delivered on 6 October 2020.

We are preparing to re-open with new policies and nomination criteria to support Victoria’s economic recovery and the public health response.”

WESTERN AUSTRALIA

“The Western Australian State Nominated Migration Program is currently suspended. WA Migration Services will not issue invitations to apply for State nomination during the suspension period.

WA Migration Services appreciates your patience and looks forward to progressing the State Nominated Migration Program as soon as possible.”

 

If you want to discuss how you are effected, your current visa application or your visa options going forward please Contact Us

  • Office: +44 (0)800772 0570
  • Mobile: + 44 (0)7710 649194
  • Email: mark@cargilmigration.com

 

Australian temporary visa holder changes – 4 April, 2020

Updated Australian immigration policy

In response to COVID-19 the DHA have announced further policy changes to visa holders currently in Australia. These changes effect:

  • New Zealand Citizens on Subclass 444 visas
  • Visitor visa changes
  • International students
  • Temporary Skilled visa holders
  • Working Holiday Makers
  • Access to Superannuation

The statement from the DHA is below. If you want to discuss how this effects you, please Contact Us.

Saturday, 04 April 2020

Coronavirus and Temporary Visa holders

The Government is making a number of changes to temporary visa holder arrangements during the coronavirus crisis in order to protect the health and livelihoods of Australians, support critical industries, and assist with the rapid recovery post the virus.There are 2.17 million people presently in Australia on a temporary visa.All were welcomed to Australia on a temporary basis for different reasons including to fill skills shortages; to study as full fee-paying international students; to visit family and friends; or to work and holiday.They are an important part of our economy and society. For example, there are over 8,000 skilled medical professionals on temporary visas supporting our health system right now.While citizens, permanent residents and many New Zealanders have access to unconditional work rights and government payments (including the new JobKeeper and JobSeeker payments), temporary visa holders do not.There has always been an expectation that temporary visa holders are able to support themselves while in Australia.  The changes announced today will help facilitate this for those who may be stood down or lose work hours as a result of the coronavirus. In line with changes being made for Australian citizens and permanent residents, most temporary visa holders with work rights will now be able to access their Australian superannuation to help support themselves during this crisis.  Temporary visa holders who are unable to support themselves under these arrangements over the next six months are strongly encouraged to return home. For these individuals it’s time to go home, and they should make arrangements as quickly as possible.Changes are also geared toward enabling temporary visa holders to remain in key industries, such as health, aged and disability care, agriculture and food processing. Importantly, they can help boost front line health numbers, get food from farms to our shops and ensure critical services continue.Temporary visa holders are extremely valuable to the Australian economy and way of life, but the reality is that many Australians will find themselves out of work due to the dual health and economic crisis we’re currently facing, and these Australians and permanent residents must be the Government’s number one focus.Visa changesThe following new measures will apply to the major classes of temporary visa holders. The situation will be reviewed periodically and further changes made if required.Visitor visa holdersThere are 203,000 international visitors in Australia, typically on a visa lasting three months or less.International tourists should return to their home country as quickly as possible, particularly those without family support.Thousands are already doing this and others should follow their lead.International students There are 565,000 international students in Australia, mainly studying in the higher education or vocational education sector. They are an important contributor to our tertiary sector and economy, supporting 240,000 Australian jobs.Students are encouraged to rely on family support, part-time work where available and their own savings to sustain themselves in Australia.  As part of their visa application, international students have had to demonstrate that they can support themselves completely in their first year.Students who have been here longer than 12 months who find themselves in financial hardship will be able to access their Australian superannuation.The Government will undertake further engagement with the international education sector who already provide some financial support for international students facing hardship. For example, we understand there are some education providers that are providing fee discounts to international students.The Government will also be flexible in cases where Coronavirus has prevented international students meeting their visa conditions (such as not being able attend classes).International students are able to work up to 40 hours per fortnight.International students working in aged care and as nurses have had these hours extended to support these critical sectors.International students working in the major supermarkets had also had these hours extended to help get stock on shelves during the high demand. From 1 May, their hours will return to the maximum 40 hours a fortnight as more Australians are being recruited into these roles.New Zealanders on 444 visasNew Zealanders and Australians have reciprocal arrangements whereby we can each stay and work in each other’s country. There are more than 672,000 New Zealanders in Australia on a subclass 444 visa.New Zealanders who are on 444 visas and arrived before 26 February 2001 will have access to welfare payments and the JobKeeper payment.444 visa holders who arrived after 2001 have access to the JobKeeper payment. Those who have lived in Australia for 10 years or more have access to JobSeeker payments for six months.New Zealanders should consider returning to New Zealand if they are unable to support themselves through these provisions, work or family support.Temporary Skilled visa holders There are around 139,000 temporary skilled visa holders, on either a 2 year or 4 year visa.  They were provided the visa to fill a skills shortage – a shortage that may still be present when the crisis has passed.Consequently, those visa holders who have been stood down, but not laid off, will maintain their visa validity and businesses will have the opportunity to extend their visa as per normal arrangements.  Businesses will also be able to reduce the hours of the visa holder without the person being in breach of their visa condition.These visa holders will also be able to access up to $10,000 of their superannuation this financial year.Those visa holders who have been laid off due to coronavirus should leave the country in line with existing visa conditions if they are unable to secure a new sponsor.  However, should a 4-year visa holder be re-employed after the coronavirus pandemic, their time already spent in Australia will count towards their permanent residency skilled work experience requirements.Working holiday makers supporting critical sectors There are about 118,000 people in Australia on a Working Holiday visa (or backpacker visa) – a visa which provides conditional work rights.To support the critical sectors of heath, aged and disability care, agriculture and food processing, and childcare, some limited flexibility will be provided.In particular, working holiday makers who are working in these critical sectors will be exempt from the six month work limitation with the one employer and eligible for a further visa to keep working in these critical sectors if their current visa is due to expire in the next six months.In general, working holiday makers that do not have the confidence to sustain themselves over the next six months should make arrangements to leave the country.There are another 185,000 other temporary visa holders in Australia, about half of them temporary graduate visa holders. They will also be able to access their Australian superannuation if needed for support.Further announcements will be made with the Deputy Prime Minister and Agriculture Minister in relation to supporting the agricultural sector, including the operation of the Seasonal Worker Program and Pacific Labour Scheme. 

https://minister.homeaffairs.gov.au/davidcoleman/Pages/Coronavirus-and-Temporary-Visa-holders.aspx

Australia – New arrangements for travellers from overseas

Australia introduce new measures to reduce community transmission of COVID-19

Australian have continued to develop their response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to Australian travel restrictions announced last week the Australian government have announced further measures

All travellers entering Australia are now be required to undertake their mandatory 14 day self-isolation at designated facilities. These facilities will be determined by each state and territory and may be hotels.

The details provided on the DHA website are as below.

  • From 23:59 AEDT on 28 March 2020 all people entering Australia will be required to undertake a mandatory 14-day quarantine at designated facilities (for example, a hotel), in their port of arrival
  • Travellers will be transported directly to designated facilities after appropriate immigration, customs and enhanced health checks.
  • Designated facilities will be determined by the relevant state or territory government and will ordinarily be in the city of entry where the traveller has cleared immigration, but facilities in other areas may be used if requireFor further information see New arrangements for arrivals from overseas​.​​

          Restrictions in place until: Further notice

If you want to discuss how this may effect your Australian travel plans, current visa application or current visa status please Contact Us.

GSM Visa changes a plenty – watch this space

There have been a lot of changes to the GSM program in recent months.

Contact Us to discuss these,  and stay tuned to this Blog for further information …

 

 

Queensland Skilled Occupation Lists (QSOL) closed until 1st July, 2019

Business and Skilled Migration Queensland have announced the following:

“Skilled visa nominations are now closed

BSMQ is now closed to receive EOI’s for the General Skilled Migration Program (GSM). The program will open again in the new financial year in July 2019. We will provide new QSOL lists and eligibility criteria prior to the program being re-opened in July will published on the BSMQ website.”

If you have any queries about what your visa options are please Contact Us.

Welcome to our Blog – Australian immigration news & views

Hi all,

Thank you for stopping by our Blog. We try to provide our news & views on Australian immigration as often as we can.

If you want to search through what we have published in the past please look at the Categories and click on a subject that is of interest to you.

Please feel free to share these on Social Media.

Australian visa options

Australian immigration

If you can’t find what you are looking for, please Contact Us.

A phone call is preferred – 0800 572 0570 . However you can email mark@cargilmigration.com or send us a Tweet as well.

Happy Reading!

Update – Western Australian business migration nomination

The WA Government have announced the below.

” Please note, applications for Western Australian State nomination for business and investor provisional visas are closed until further notice.

Western Australia has temporarily closed applications for State nomination for the Business Innovation and Investment provisional visas pending the release of additional places by the Department of Home Affairs. We value your interest in our program and encourage you to check this website regularly for updates. We hope to reopen the program shortly.”

If you have any questions about the above please Contact Us.

Update – Victorian business migration nomination

Victorian government announcement – January 7th, 2019

“Victoria has temporarily closed applications for nomination of certain business and investor visas.

Victoria is currently experiencing a high volume of applications for nomination for select business and investor visas. To help manage this demand, and meet our service commitments to you, we are temporarily not accepting new applications for the following visa sub-classes:

• 188 – Business Innovation stream
• 188 – Significant Investor stream
• 188 – Investor stream
• 188 – Entrepreneur stream
• 132 – Business Talent (Permanent) – Significant Business History stream
• 132 – Business Talent (Permanent) –  Venture Capital Entrepreneur stream

We will continue to assess all nomination applications received prior to 5 January 2019, however please be advised delays may occur in providing outcomes for these applications.

Your interest in the Business Innovation & Investment Program is highly valued and we hope to reopen the program shortly. We cannot provide a specific date or timeframe at this point, however encourage you to visit the Live in Melbourne website regularly for program updates.”

If you have any questions regarding Victorian business migration, either now or in the future, please Contact Us.

Northern Territory announce new Designated Area Migration Agreement

More occupations available for overseas workers

On Wednesday 2nd January, 2019 the Designated Area Migration Agreement (DAMA II), came into effect in the Northern Territory on January 1. The program is targeted at recruiting skilled migrants to the territory, and increases the number of occupations available to overseas workers.

More details to come shortly …