The Commonwealth of Australia comprises the mainland of the Australian continent and many smaller islands. By area, it is the world's sixth-largest country and is the only nation to govern an entire continent. Australia was one of the first countries to establish democracy in the modern world. The Commonwealth of Australia was formed in 1901 and maintains a stable, liberal, democratic political system comprising six states and several territories. The 25 million population is centered in urban areas in the east and in coastal areas.
Australia is a highly developed and wealthy country, with the world’s 14th largest economy. It ranks 3rd in the UN’s Human Development Index.
Australia is a member of ANZUS, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, the Commonwealth of Nations, G20, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the Pacific Islands Forum, the United Nations, and the World Trade Organization.
All foreign nationals apart from New Zealand citizens must hold a visa prior to travelling to Australia.
There are two types of migration for non-Australian citizens: temporary and permanent. Temporary resident visas allow non-Australian citizens to remain in Australia for a specified duration for purposes that may include tourism, visiting family, study, work, and medical treatment. Many temporary visas provide a pathway to permanent residence eligibility.
Benefits For Permanent Residents Of Australia
- You can live and travel anywhere within Australia
- You can pursue higher studies in Australia and can apply for certain educational loans
- You become eligible for Social Security benefits after two years of having a PR visa
- You can sponsor the PR of your relatives if they meet certain pre-requisites
- You can apply for government jobs
- You can travel to New Zealand and can even apply for a visa there
Visa applicants must meet certain criteria prescribed to the appropriate visa subclass. The criteria prescribed to a visa application will include either ‘at time of lodgment’ requirements, ‘at time of decision’ requirements, or a combination of both. Visa applications may be refused if an applicant does not demonstrate that they meet the criteria at the correct time. All visa subclasses include the requirement to satisfy certain health, character, and public interest criteria.
Permanent residents are required to spend at least two years of a five-year period in Australia or demonstrate significant ties to Australia, in order to maintain their residence status.
The Australian visa application process is very structured and based on laws, regulations, policy, and legislative instruments. The application processing time is nine to twelve months but may differ according to the visa type. The Department of Immigration has a priority processing tier under which visa applications that yield the greatest benefit to the country (skilled visas) will be assessed quicker than those with less benefit (family visas).
There are six visa streams under the Business Innovation and Investment Program and the Business Talent Program.
The Business Innovation and Investment Program includes the following:
The above temporary visas offer a direct pathway to permanent residence after four years, subject to meeting certain residence and investment or business turnover requirements.
The Business Talent Program includes the following:
The above two streams offer direct permanent residence and applicants must quickly become involved in the relevant business.
The Global Talent Independent Program is a streamlined pathway to permanent residence for highly skilled executives, businesspeople, entrepreneurs, and professionals. It is designed to help grow Australia’s innovation and tech economies and create opportunities for Australians by transferring skills, promoting innovation, and creating jobs. The Australian Government is seeking the best and brightest global talent in the following seven future-focused sectors:
Applicants for the Global Talent Independent visa must be internationally recognized, currently prominent in their field, and able to provide evidence of outstanding achievements over their career. They must also provide evidence that they would be an asset to Australia in their area of expertise and have no difficulty obtaining employment in the country or becoming established in their field. Places are also available to master’s and PhD students who can demonstrate their exceptional talent and international recognition across the target sectors.
A child born in Australia to an Australian permanent resident or citizen parent will automatically be entitled to Australian citizenship. A child born outside of Australia to an Australian citizen parent will also automatically be entitled to Australian citizenship.
After four years of lawful residence in Australia, with at least the last 12 months of that period spent as an Australian permanent resident, it is possible to apply for Australian citizenship. There is a citizenship appointment and test that must be attended and passed, as well as a pledge that must be made before citizenship will be granted.
It is compulsory for adult Australian citizens to vote in federal, state, and local government elections, and failure to do so may result in financial penalties. It is also a requirement for Australian citizens to exit and enter Australia using their Australian passport.
Australia allows dual citizenship.
All Australian skilled immigration worker visas have been replaced by The General Skilled Migration (Skill Select) program since the years 2012-2013. Applicants are required to meet a minimum goal of 60 points, achieved from the General Skilled Migration (Skill select) table of points in order to be considered for the program. There are five visa subclasses that fall under this program to attain efficiency in the migration system of the country, and are as the following:
This visa is point-based and is aimed at those skilled workers that have not been sponsored by an employer nor any family member. The visa provides the entitlement for the owner to live and work permanently anywhere in Australia with eligible family members included.
This visa is point-based and is aimed at those skilled workers that have been nominated by a state or territory of Australia. The visa provides the entitlement for the owner to live and work permanently anywhere in Australia with eligible family members included.
This visa is aimed at the migrating students that have completed a minimum of 2 years’ worth of study in Australia, allowing them to live and work in the country for anywhere between 18 months and 4 years.
This visa is point-based is aimed at those skilled workers that have been nominated by a state or a territory to live and work in a specific region or have been sponsored by an able relative belonging to a certain area of Australia. The visa duration is of 4 years and the owner must live and work in the designated area, with eligible family members included.
This visa is a second-stage permanent visa that is not points-based, rather there are other certain requirements that must be met by the applicant in order to obtain it. The visa provides the owner with full legal and permanent residence.
There are various categories under which you can apply for a PR visa which have different eligibility requirements. But the general eligibility factors are as under:
Points Requirement: Points determine your eligibility for a PR visa You must score at least 65 points under the Point’s Grid. The below table describes the different criteria for scoring points:
|Age (25-33 years)||30 points|
|English proficiency (8 bands)||20 points|
|Work Experience outside Australia (8-10 years)||15 points|
|Work Experience in Australia (8-10 years)||20 points|
|Education (outside Australia) – Doctorate degree||20 points|
|Niche skills such as Doctorate or master’s degree by research in Australia||10 points|
|Study in a regional area||5 points|
|Accredited in community language||5 points|
|Professional year in a skilled program in Australia||5 points|
|State sponsorship (190 visa)||5 points|
|Skilled spouse or de facto partner (Age, Skills & English language requirements to be met)||10 points|
|Spouse or de facto partner with ‘competent English’ (No need to meet Skills requirement or age factor)||5 points|
|Applicants without a spouse or de facto partner or where a spouse is an Australia citizen or PR holder||10 points|
Age: Your age should be below 45 years to apply for a PR visa
Language Proficiency: You should have proof that you have a competent level of proficiency in the English language.
Skilled Occupation Lists (SOL): The applicant must choose an occupation that is available in the following skilled occupation lists. The list contains the occupations that are currently acceptable for migration to Australia. The occupations in the lists are updated regularly and reflect the changes in the Australian labor market. There are three categories of the SOL:
Australia offers many options to apply for the PR visa card. You can choose the appropriate option based on your eligibility and requirements. Here are the popular options for your Australian PR:
Family-stream permanent residence visas: This stream is for spouse/partner, children or parents of Australian citizens or permanent residents.
Business or investment-stream permanent residence visas: This stream is for those willing to invest in Australia for business purposes. To be eligible to apply for PR under this stream, applicants should have had the provisional visa (subclass 188) for at least one year and meet the financial requirements.
Work-stream permanent residence visas: This visa stream is for workers who are sponsored by an Australian employer. The various visa categories under this stream include:
Skilled Independent Visa (Subclass 189): This visa option is suitable for skilled workers. However, this visa cannot receive sponsorship.
Skilled Nominated Visa (Subclass 190): This visa is applicable to skilled workers who have a nomination from an Australian state/Territory. For this visa, you will have to prove that your occupation exists in the Skilled Occupation List.
Skilled Regional (Provisional) Visa (Subclass 491): For eligibility under this visa, you must meet the skill requirement and get sponsorship or nomination from either state or region or territory.
Step 1: Check the eligibility requirements
Step 2: English proficiency Test
Check if you have the required proficiency in the English language by taking the specified English language test. Fortunately, the Australian immigration authorities accept scores from various English ability tests like IELTS, PTE, TOEFL, etc. So, you can take any of these tests to obtain the specified score.
Step 3: Get your skill assessment done
Get your skills assessed by the Skills assessment authority which is an organization that will assess your skills, education and work experience based on Australian standards.
Step 4: Register your Expression of Interest
The first two are permanent visas while the third one is a temporary visa with a validity of five years which can later be converted to a PR visa.
You should provide all the required information in the online application.
Step 5: Get your Invitation to Apply (ITA)
Once you submit your application and if it meets all the requirements then you will get an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for Australia PR.
Step 6: Submit your PR application
The next step is to submit your PR application. You must submit it within 60 days. The application must have all the supporting documents for processing your PR visa. These documents are your personal documents, immigration documents, and work experience documents.
Step 7: Get your clearance certificates
The next step is to submit your police clearance certificates. After a medical examination, you must submit your medical clearance certificate.
Step 8: Get your PR visa
The last step is getting your PR visa.
If you diligently follow all the steps involved in the PR application process, the next question would be how long it will take for the visa to be processed. PR visa processing includes different stages. Each stage has a different time structure. Here is a breakdown of the time taken for each stage. The addition of the time taken for each stage determines the total processing time for your PR visa.
Getting your PR visa for Australia can be a complicated process, but with the help of an immigration consultant, it can be easy. Our expertise of over 15 years has helped many individuals to get their Australia PR visa.
The application process for the PR visa through the General Skilled Migration program follows a set process that contains a series of steps. These include Skills Assessment, English language test, medical test, police clearance, etc. Each step comes with its own separate cost. The sum total of all these costs will give you the total cost of the PR visa along with the visa application fees.
The PR visa application starts with a Skills Assessment where your skills and qualifications are reviewed by an accreditation body affiliated with the Australian Government. You’ll have to pay the Skills Assessment fees for this, which vary depending on the profession.
You will have to prove your English skills by taking some of the Australian Government’s accredited English language exams. Those include IELTS, TOEFL, PTE, etc. Again, the cost of the exam can vary depending on the exam you choose.
Applying for PR under Subclass Visa 190 requires State sponsorship. This makes you for state nomination for your PR visa. State Sponsorship fees vary with each state, the average cost is around AUD 300.
When applying for your PR visa, you and your dependents should submit certificates for good health and character. For this, you will have to pay for a medical examination and a police clearance certificate. The cost of the police clearance certificate depends on the country you are from.
Please note that the cost of PR visa application changes periodically. The cost is dependent on the date the application is filed. If the cost of the application increases between the date of filing and the time it reaches the immigration department then you will have to pay as per the new charges.
The total cost of your PR visa depends on the kind of visa you are applying for, its application fees, fees for medical examination, English language test, health insurance, number of dependents, airfare to Australia and other miscellaneous costs.
The Australian government implemented changes to its points-based immigration system. Below are the changes to the points-based system:
The above changes have created an impact on General Skilled Migration (GSM) visa categories.
The Australian government introduced two visas that came into effect from November 2019. This is intended to attract skilled migrants to settle down in regional areas. The two visas Skilled Work Regional (subclass 491) Skilled Employer-Sponsored Regional visa (subclass 494) will have 25,000 visa places reserved for them out of the total permanent migration planning level of 160,000 by the Australian government. The two new visas have replaced the Subclass 489 and Subclass 187 visas.
The key changes these visas have brought include:
The Australian government introduced these visas to encourage immigrants to settle in regional areas and reduce their concentration in the three major cities of Australia. These visas are expected to provide incentives to migrants to settle in regional Australia and consequently help to improve the economy in these regions.
You can become an Australian citizen through permanent residency, also called as conferral by the Australian government. This is the most popular way to become an Australian citizen.
For this, you will have to fulfil the residence requirements. This is based on the period you have lived in Australia and the time you have spent outside the country.
The residence requirements include:
Citizenship through residency is possible if the individual stays continuously in Australia for four years on a qualifying visa that includes living in the country for one year as a permanent resident.
Qualifying visas that will help you stay continuously in the country for four years are:
Skill assessment is an integral part of the General Skilled Migration program which helps to choose immigrants with the right qualities to come to Australia. Without a skill assessment, the applicant will not be able to apply for a permanent residency in the country.
Under the points-based immigration, the immigrant must select an occupation that is listed in Australia’s Occupational Demand List. This list will mention occupations that face a skill shortage in the country. Every occupation in the list has its own skill assessing authority. For instance, trade occupations are assessed by the TRA (Trade Recognition Australia) or the VETASSESS (Vocational Educational and Training Assessment Services).
To get their skill assessment done candidates must meet the required conditions outlined by the assessing authority which is evaluating their occupation. The candidate should have the related qualifications and experience to get a positive assessment.
The first requirement for a skill assessment is that your occupation must be related to your work experience. If there is a mismatch, then you will not get the required points.
Apart from this, you must submit all the required documents. They must be authentic and complete and any small discrepancy in your documents can lead to a negative assessment. You will have to submit every additional detail requested by the assessing authority. The documents should support your qualifications and experience claims.
Factors considered by the assessing authority:
Apart from this, proof of undergoing a language assessment test such as IELTS or PTE is required by the skill assessment bodies.
You must also submit proof of your work experience, these can include:
You must also submit proof of undergoing a language assessment test such as IELTS or PTE as required by the skill assessment bodies.
Skill Assessment is an important factor in the General Skilled Migration program and getting a positive skill assessment report is the crucial first step in getting a PR visa to Australia.
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