Migration to Australia – a range of different visa options for applicants

AUSTRALIAMigration to Australia - immigration visa information Few other countries in the world offer as attractive a lifestyle as Australia does. With an enviable standard of living, unparalleled natural beauty and a real outdoors lifestyle – Australia has always been a major attraction for immigrants.There are a range of different visa options that we deal with, assisting applicants in all categories. Some of these options are listed here.Skilled Workers – For Skilled Migration, Australia has a Skilled Occupations List which details the occupations needed. Certain occupations that are in acute shortage also receive bonus points to reflect their high demand. We provide a detailed assessment of your eligibility to pass the points test.

If you do not score enough points to pass the Points Test, then there are a range of further options available through State / Territory sponsorship. These include the State / Territory Nominated Independent visa (STNI) and Skilled Independent Regional (SIR) visa. We deal directly with State governments to secure your sponsorship, which in effect bypasses the Point Test.

We have an excellent track record in dealing with all types of visas for Australia and we have achieved notable success in processing “more difficult” applications. These include applications for Tradespersons without formal qualifications but possessing the requisite experience.

Spouse visas – We have also developed particular expertise in processing visas through the Spouse category for married spouses, defacto spouses and fiancées. Our service ensures a dedicated and highly personalised approach to processing your application. Every application under this category is different and we need to assess each application individually. Please feel free to contact us to discuss how we can help you with applications in these visa classes.

Business and Investment visas – Business owners and experienced executives have the opportunity to apply for special business visas. Individuals must be able to demonstrate their ability and be able to support any future opportunities that they wish to develop with funds and quality business plans.

If you have a background as an Investor you need to demonstrate a successful track record. Your minimum assets available must not be less than AU$1,250,000 of which AU$750,000 has previously been invested and available for future investment.

Working Holiday – If you are aged between 18 and 30, we can help you obtain a Working Holiday visa. This allows you to travel and work in Australia for 12 months with an option to extend to 24 months.


LATEST IMMIGRATION NEWS – AUSTRALIA
(as published in our newsletter)Immigration to Australia - General skilled migration visaAUSTRALIA – NEW CHANGES
– GENERAL SKILLED MIGRATION

May 2007 – Many of you will be aware that in one of our previous newsletters we announced some significant changes in relation to the selection criteria for Skilled Migrants to Australia. These changes will apply to all applications that will be submitted after September 1st 2007.
The Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship have now provided detailed guidance on the operation and interpretation of the new system.

We outline each of these changes.

NEW CATEGORIESAt the moment, there are 15 different visa subclasses under General Skilled Migration. The new system will reduce this to 9 subclasses by merging different subclasses.

Hopefully, this will make the new system easier to understand and more uniform.

ENGLISH LANGUAGEUnder the new system, the points awarded for English language ability will be 15 or 25 points, rather than the current breakdown of 15 and 20 points.

Applicants who are passport holders from an English speaking country should automatically be granted 15 points. However, to score 25 points, applicants will need to sit an English language test – such as I.E.L.T.S.

Test Centres for I.E.L.T.S. are located worldwide.

This is obviously a big change and will affect many applicants. Whilst the opportunity to score more points for English language will be welcome, the necessity to sit an English language test, may be seen as overly burdensome on native English speakers.

RECENT WORK EXPERIENCE

The recent work experience requirement will be uniform across all offshore skilled visa subclasses. Applicants will be required to demonstrate skilled work experience for at least 12 months in the 2 years immediately preceding the lodgement of the visa application.

This will need to be for at least 20 hours per week in a paid position. However, the 12 month period will not cover extended periods of leave without pay, such as when the applicant is on unpaid maternity leave.

The current requirement for the Skilled Independent category is to have work experience for 12 of the last 18 months.


FEEThe current Skilled processing fee for applications of AUD$1,990 is due to be reviewed from July 1st.

ASSURANCE OF SUPPORTWhere an applicant is sponsored by an Australian relative, the requirement that an Assurance of Support and bond is lodged with Centrelink, is now removed.

This will obviously lessen the burden on relatives in Australia sponsoring applicants.

PASS MARKThe Pass Mark for the Independent subclasses will be 120 points.

The Pass Mark for the Sponsored and Regional Sponsored subclasses (where one is sponsored by an Australian relative) will be 100 points.

Applicants who are sponsored by a relative in a designated area will now be granted 25 points for such sponsorship.

MIGRATION OCCUPATION DEMAND LIST (MODL)Applicants who nominate an occupation on the MODL, must now be able to show 12 months recent experience in the MODL occupation and not just any skilled occupation. This is a change from the current position.

OTHER DEVELOPMENTSApplicants can now include their Interdependent same-sex partner on their Skilled Migration application. The rules will be similar to those regarding opposite-sex common law relationships. This will involve co-habitation in a genuine exclusive relationship for a minimum of 12 months.

The category allowing the award of 5 points for an investment of AUD$100,000 has now been removed.

If you qualify on the current system, then it is important to ensure you move ahead with submitting your application before these changes take effect on September 1st.


For further information on migration to Australia, please call us on
+44 (0) 1223 830 916 or complete an Online Assessment form on our website www.commonwealthimmigration.com.

USEFUL LINKS – AUSTRALIA FACTS & INFO
(external links with general information on Australia)
Wiki: Australia – from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
About Australia: Australia Facts
CIA – The World Factbook: Australia
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Commonwealth Immigration Consultants Ltd.

based in London and Cambridge

Tel. +44 (0) 1223 830 916
Email: info@commonwealthimmigration.com

Commonwealth Immigration Consultants
UK Government Registered Immigration Consultants No. F200100020

Member of the Association of Regulated Immigration Advisers (ARIA)
Affiliate Member of the Australian Institute of Migration

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