NEWSLETTER No. 30 - September 2010

Australia Immigration and ResidencyAUSTRALIA NEW IMMIGRATION MINISTER

Following the recent election in Australia, the Labor government has been returned to power. A new Immigration Minister, Chris Bowen has been appointed. 

This will be of interest to migrants currently awaiting their applications to be processed and those hoping to apply soon.

We now understand that all Australian State governments have submitted State Migration Plans to the Immigration Minister to approve. These State Migration Plans will allow State governments in Australia to select migrants with the desired skills required by that State.

Once Ministerial approval is received, then State governments will be able to receive applications for State sponsorship. We understand that the criteria for State sponsorship may not necessarily be the same as the previous criteria used by States for selection.

In the meantime, the wait for existing applicants continues, while no further information on processing priorities has been made available. The position of the previous government was that the imposition of processing priorities was for the benefit of the Australian economy and that this was to be placed ahead of the expectations of migrants.

We wait to see if any changes will be made to such priorities and if a system where applicants are processed in chronological order can be re-introduced. 

If you are looking to move to Australia then please contact us so that we can check your eligibility.

* Click for Australia info page with the latest migration news

Australia Immigration Nursing UpdateAUSTRALIA NURSING UPDATE

The Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) has revised its frequently asked questions (FAQ) and explanatory notes on English Language requirements.

The new version dated 17 August, means that applicants who have completed secondary schooling and a nursing or midwifery qualification in English are now only required to provide evidence of their English language education. They are no longer required to sit the English language test (IELTS) and achieve a score of 7. 

This is a significant policy change that will be welcome news to many applications applying for registration.

HOWEVER - it is important to remember that the NMBA only deal with registration for Nurses who are able to work in Australia - i.e. have a work or residence visa etc... Most overseas applicants will still need to go through the assessment process with the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Council (ANMC) to apply for residence. The ANMC still retains the IELTS test as a compulsory requirement for ALL nurses.

If you are a Nurse looking to move to Australia then contact us through our website for specialist advice.

* Click for Australia info page with the latest migration news


The Trucking companies that we deal with in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, Canada are still looking to take on more Truckdrivers. They are looking to sponsor applicants for work visas and then permanent residence through the Provincial Nomination Program.

The employer is looking for Truckdrivers who have the UK Class 1 licence (or other European equivalent) with at least 3 years experience. 

If you are interested, then please email us and we will send you an application form with information.

* Click for Canada info page with the latest migration news

Teaching Australia Immigration and VisaE-book  TEACHING AUSTRALIA 

Are you a Teacher looking to work or study in Australia?
Then you should visit 

Previous Newsletters on migration issues:
Newsletter 1 - January 2007
  Newsletter 2 - March 2007
  Newsletter 3 - April 2007
  Newsletter 4 - May 2007
  Newsletter 5 - May 2007 - In Focus: Australia
  Newsletter 6 - June 2007
  Newsletter 7 - July 2007
  Newsletter 8 - August 2007
  Newsletter 9 - October 2007
  Newsletter 10 - November 2007
  Newsletter 11 - December 2007
  Newsletter 12 - February 2008
  Newsletter 13 - March 2008
  Newsletter 14 - June 2008

  Newsletter 15 - July 2008
  Newsletter 16 - September 2008
  Newsletter 17 - November 2008
  Newsletter 18 - December 2008
  Newsletter 19 - January 2009

  Newsletter 20 - February 2009
  Newsletter 21 - April 2009
  Newsletter 22 - June 2009
  Newsletter 23 - August 2009
  Newsletter 24 - October 2009
  Newsletter 25 - December 2009
  Newsletter 26 - February 2010
  Newsletter 27 - March 2010
  Newsletter 28 - June 2010
  Newsletter 29 - July 2010

Contact us

Commonwealth Immigration Consultants Ltd.

based in London and Cambridge

Tel. +44 (0) 1223 830 916


The UK government have announced English language tests for partners / spouses will be introduced from 29 November 2010.

The introduction of such a test was announced following the new government's election to office. 

From this date, any migrant who wants to enter or remain in the UK as the partner of a British citizen or a person settled here will need to show that they can speak and understand English, by taking an English language test. The test will be with one of the approved test providers - such as IELTS, TOEFL etc....

The new rules will apply to anyone applying as the husband, wife, civil partner, unmarried partner, same-sex partner, fiance(e) or proposed civil partner of a British citizen or a person settled in this country. They will be compulsory for people applying from within the UK as well as visa applicants from overseas.

Some applicants will be exempt - such as those from "majority English language countries" - this will include those countries designated as such for the Tier 1 and Tier 2 visa categories.

Applicants should be aware of the introduction of the test if looking to apply after 29th November.

* Click for United Kingdom info page with the latest migration news


The UK Immigration Minister Damian Green has made a major policy speech on immigration. The speech seems to be aimed at an overall tightening of the immigration system with particular emphasis on student numbers.

The Minister queries the legacy of the previous government's immigration policy and asks strong questions on students remaining in the UK for lengthy periods, the effectiveness of skilled immigration and the proposals for an immigration cap.

Obviously the current government are only at the start of their 5 year term so policy announcements such as this are common at this time. We will closely monitor and report on immigration changes as they are unveiled.


The government have announced their intention to abolish the "Certificate of Approval to Marry" scheme.

This is the process where non UK / EU citizens need to apply for permission to marry in the UK. The Certificate of Approval scheme has been controversial since its introduction a few years back and has been subjected to much scrutiny by the courts.

The government are stating that the;

"scheme is incompatible with Article 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights, and changes made following rulings from the courts have weakened the scheme, and it is no longer an effective method of preventing sham marriage".

Although the scheme is still in operation, it will be abolished in 2011, depending on how quickly it can be removed through Parliament.

This is a positive development in removing a simplistic and discriminatory piece of legislation which caused more problems than it solved.


As part of the overall review of government expenditure, it has now been announced that visa fees will be increased again in October. 

Normally visa fees are only increased on an annual basis, usually in April. However, new fees will be announced and implemented in October 2010, which will probably be in addition to another increase in April 2011.

* Click for UK info page with the latest migration news

Commonwealth ImmigrationKEEP UP TO DATE THROUGH OUR


We hope that this newsletter has been informative for you.  However, remember everyone's circumstances are different so if you or a friend or family member want to check your eligibility to emigrate then either

1) complete the Online Assessment form on our website or
2) give us a call on +44 (0) 1223 830 916

We would love to hear from you!

Tim McMahon
Commonwealth Immigration

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