NEWSLETTER No. 23 – August 2009


The Home Office have now announced proposals on future plans for applicants to obtain UK citizenship.

At the moment, after complying with rules on residence and character, applicants are normally eligible to apply for full UK citizenship.

The new proposals would allow the Home Office to introduce a points based system for UK citizenship. There would also potentially be a system of “probationary citizenship” before “full citizenship”.

As outlined by the Home Office, the new system

“would see people rewarded for economic contributions, skills and English language proficiency above the level already expected. Points could be removed and citizenship withheld or delayed for those breaking the law or committing anti-social behaviour”.

This would obviously be a radical departure from the current system and potentially lead to much greater scrutiny of applicants. The timeframe to achieve full UK citizenship could also be longer.

At the moment, the proposals are still at the consultation stage until 26 October. After that, we expect details on the implementation of the new system.

We will obviously keep applicants informed of any further announcements regarding the new rules for UK citizenship.


Nurses and Midwives are in demand in Australia. So much so that these occupations are included on the Australian Critical Skills List which means that they will be processed ahead of all other occupations.

This allows for the grant of full permanent residence without the need for sponsorship by an employer or State government. This allows total freedom to easily move from employer to employer, something that is not possible on a work sponsored visa.

We regularly assist Nurses to migrate to Australia and there are 3 key stages in the process.

* Registration with the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Council

* Application for full permanent residence visa.

* Registration in the State / Territory in which one intends to work.

It is vital that each stage is completed correctly. Recent rule changes now require that ALL applicants must complete an appropriate English language test for registration. This was previously waived for applicants from the UK, Ireland and the USA, however now it is mandatory.

We have an excellent record in assisting Nurses to obtain full permanent residence, professional registration and employment in Australia.

If you are interested in moving to Australia then please complete the Online Assessment form on our website.

NEWSLETTER No. 22 – June 2009


The Department of Immigration have announced details of the new Migration Program effective for the year 1 July 2009 until 30 June 2010.

A total of 108,100 permanent skilled visas will be available from the start of the new Program year on 1 July. Although this is a slight reduction from the 115,000 visas available in the current Program year, its only brings the overall numbers back to normal levels. The numbers for this coming Program year are the 3rd highest planned intake ever.

For instance, previous years resulted in the following numbers of permanent skilled visas.

2007/08: 108,540
2006/07: 97,920
2005/06: 97,340
2004/05: 77,880

The government has announced no change in eligibility criteria or the applicable Pass Mark. We therefore expect processing of these skilled visas to largely continue in line with previous years.

There is also good news for those applying through the Partner and Parent visa categories. The number of permanent visas available in these categories has been increased.

We will obviously keep applicants informed of any further announcements regarding the new Migration Program.



We are pleased to announce that the option of proving one’s trade skills through a practical assessment has now been extended to several more trades.

The new trades eligible for practical assessment are;

Welder (First Class)
Metal Fabricator
Metal Machinist (First Class)
Sheetmetal Worker (First Class)
General Mechanical Engineering Tradesperson
General Fabrication Engineering Tradesperson
Electroplater (First Class)
Pressure Welder
General Plumber

This is a great opportunity for those who can demonstrate the full range of skills in their trade, but who do not have formal qualifications from completing college courses, apprenticeships etc…

Successful completion of the assessment will result in the award of an Australian Qualification Framework Certificate Level 3, which in turn is recognised by Trades Recognition Australia, the Department of Immigration and Australian employers

Previously such programmes were only available in Australia, involving lengthy courses and great expense.

If you have qualifications / skills / experience in any of the above trades and you are interested in moving to Australia, then please contact us.

Additionally, the following trades have also been available for practical assessment for several months;

Hairdresser, Plasterer, Floor Finisher, Wall / Floor Tiler, Bricklayer, Carpenter, Painter and Decorator, Roof Plumber, Roof Tiler, Cabinet Maker, Landscape Gardener, Flat Glass Trades

Unlike other major economies, Australia has not entered recession.



With the UK pound improving against the US dollar, E-2 visas have again become very attractive for those wanting to establish their own business in the United States. For the majority of people this is the only realistic option to live and work in the United States.

For many years we have helped people through this route and with the United States economy showing real signs of recovery this is a great time to invest in a new venture. If you are an experienced business owner, manager or a budding entrepreneur then please talk to us to see what opportunities the United States has for you.


The UK Immigration Minister has outlined some of his future plans in a major policy speech.

Changes to be implemented in the new few months will include further changes to family migration and reforms to settlement, breaking the link between temporary and permanent migration

The changes to family migration are expected to include much tougher provisions on sponsoring overseas spouses to settle in the UK. A minimum income figure for the UK sponsor is likely to be introduced.

Furthermore, the government plans to implement a much longer probationary period before spouse visa holders can become permanent residents. This may be increased from 2 to 5 years.

NEWSLETTER No. 21 – April 2009


The government have now clarified the April 1st changes to the UK Tier 1 General (Highly Skilled) category.
All new applicants applying in this category will need to have a minimum qualification of a Masters degree and previous earnings equivalent to UK £20,000 (adjusted for different countries).

The new rules do not apply to those already in the UK on a Tier 1 General visa or the previous HSMP visa, who are extending their status while in the UK.

However, they do apply to those in the UK such as students or work permit holders changing their UK status.

Also, the rules have now been changed for the Tier 1 Post Study Work visa. From April 1st, applicants who have been awarded a Postgraduate Diploma or Postgraduate Certificate (unless it is a PGCE Postgraduate Certificate in Education) will not be eligible for this visa. There is no change for applicants who have a UK Bachelors degree or postgraduate degree.



The Department of Immigration have announced that between now and the end of the visa year (30 June 2009) they will only be priority processing applications who occupations are on the Critical Skills List or who are sponsored by a State government.
Once the new visa program year commences on 1 July 2009, we expect processing of visa applications to resume in chronological order.
The Department have not announced any change in criteria or increase in the relevant Pass Mark (for points tested applicants). Applications can continue to be submitted as normal.
It is important to emphasise that Australia is still looking to attract migrants. However this change, which runs until 30 June 2009, allows States to target those occupations that are in demand in that particular State. The overall number of residence visas to be granted is only slightly reduced.
Increasingly, State Nomination is proving to be an option for many applicants and we can assist applicants with this.
This allows States to sponsor migrants who they need and these applications are fast-tracked for permanent residency. Some examples of in demand occupations in certain States include;

Western Australia – Plumbers, Child Care Managers, Plasterers, Hairdressers, Queensland – Secondary School Teachers, Electricians, Carpenters, Welders South Australia – Nurses, Accountants, Toolmakers, Bricklayers, Victoria – Motor Mechanics, Sheet Metal Workers, Engineers, Social Workers
These are just a few brief examples of different occupations in demand in different States. All States can sponsor many more occupations than this.
Please contact us for more information.

Also for HAIRDRESSERS – the next practical assessments by the Queensland Hairdressing Academy (QHA) in the UK and Ireland, will be facilitated in the first and second weeks of May.

This QHA practical assessment is for those applicants who do not have formal qualifications to demonstrate their Hairdressing skills.

Final locations are yet to be set – but at this stage, they are likely to be in London, Manchester, Glasgow and possibly Dublin. Interested applicants will be advised of exact locations and venues over the next few weeks.

Please contact us for more information if you are a Hairdresser looking to move to Australia.


The Province of Alberta is increasingly becoming one of the most popular destinations for migrants to Canada.
The 2 main cities of Calgary and Edmonton are home to the majority of the 3.5 million people who live in Alberta. The population growth last year was twice the Canadian average – largely due to immigration.

Much of the growth in the Alberta economy comes from its huge exports of oil and gas. Other important sectors include forestry, tourism and information technology. The unemployment rate is the lowest in Canada.

The Government of Alberta are allowed to nominate applicants directly through the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (AINP). This allows applications through many different categories such as for Skilled Workers, International Graduates, Semi-Skilled Workers, Self-Employed Farmers and the Family Stream for those who have a relative living in Alberta.

The AINP is an excellent route to gain entry to Canada’s fastest growing economy with categories to suit many different types of applicants.

If you wish to be considered for immigration to Alberta either through the Federal Skilled Worker or the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program, then please complete an Online Assessment form on our website