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The Department of Immigration and Border Protection is planning to introduce tax file number collection from visa holders of permanent skilled migration visas such as the Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186) visa, the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (subclass 187) visa, the Skilled – Independent (subclass 189) visa, the Skilled – Nominated (subclass 190) visa, and the Skilled –Regional (Provisional) (subclass 489) visa.
This update is provided by our migration agents in Sydney.
Recently, the Department of Immigration and Border Protection announced that from 1 July 2017, applications for ENS and RSMS visas made under the Temporary Residence Transition (TRT) stream will require, at a minimum, competent English language scores via the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) (or equivalent test). Competent English language means a test score of at least 6 in each component.
At the time of application, applicants need to provide the following evidence:
Test results with the required minimum test scores in a specified English language test that has been conducted within three years immediately before the date of application lodgement; or
a valid passport issued by the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Canada, New Zealand or the Republic of Ireland and evidence that the applicant is a citizen of that country
The previous English language skills exemption for earners of more than $180,001 has been removed for these two visa subclasses.
This change does not impact applications lodged before 1 July 2017 that have not yet been decided by the Department.
Migration Agent Sydney Answering frequently asked questions on the English language requirements for 457 visa applicants
According to the Immigration Department, if you are applying for Skilled Migration, you will need to prove your English language ability (via IETLS, OET, TOEFL iBT or PTE Academic Test). The required level of English is subject to the visa subclass you are applying for and there are 4 different levels of English which may be relevant: Superior – Proficient – Competent – Vocational – Functional.
VETASSESS has introduced procedural changes for their skills assessment applications to welcome the new Financial Year. By way of overview, VETASSESS has streamlined the application process and effectively reduced processing times.
Key changes include:
Assessments are now to be made regarding the highest qualification level regardless of relevance to the nominated occupation;
Changes to how employment experience is assessed and
A processing time of 8-10 weeks for assessment ready applications.
If you have been seeking to come to Australia on a General Skilled Migration visa, the changes mean that you will now be able to progress your application in a shorter space of time.
The Migration Institute of Australia has called for the government to ensure the correct balance on overseas skilled work visas.
The strain between protecting the local workforce and allowing support from foreign workers has intensified with the rising local unemployment figures. Given the geographically widespread population of Australia and the local country-to-city migration of workers, it is inevitable that we rely on foreign migration to ensure the strength and development of the economy.
The Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) has recently considered a review of the Skilled Migration and Temporary Activity Visa Programs to allow for short term 12 month mobility visas and a substantial slashing red tape.
We fully support efficiency within the DIBP – provided that is not at the expense of overseas workers – as demonstrated recently in Tasmania where an employer was paying a visa holder less than $1.35 per hour.
We will keep you posted on any developments on cuts on red tape within the system as they arise. Watch this space!
NSW has introduced a selection based invitation process for accessing the Skilled Nominated (subclass 190) program. In a move that is similar to the approach of the Department of Immigration and Border Protection, NSW will now require applicants to submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) to indicate that they wish to be considered for NSW Nomination.
NSW will then rank applicants based on their skills and experience and will issue invitations to the top ranking individuals to access the program.
It is noted that applicants will still be required to slot onto the prescribed occupation list for NSW.
Under Australia’s Skilled Migration program, applicants can apply for a variety of visas that enable both temporary and permanent residency of Australia. These visas are points-tested and require the applicant to meet a minimum threshold in order to become eligible for the program.
There are two (2) primary permanent residency pathways, points-tested visas: the Skilled Independent and the Skilled Nominated. The major difference is that the Skilled Nominated requires a State or Territory Government’s support in order to be successful.
Each applicant is awarded points for age, IELTS skills, qualification level, work experience, as well as other factors such as meeting Australia’s study requirement, demonstrating partner skills and even having specific accredited language skills. The more points you accumulate, the better chances you have of being offered a place to apply for permanent residency. If you just miss the threshold, perhaps Skilled Nominated is worth looking into as a Government can provide additional points towards your total.
Temporary visa options could include a Regional Skilled visa that enables you to live and work in an area of Australia typically out of the major city areas. This visa is sponsored by the Government and you can claim even more points for pursuing this pathway. After residing on this visa for at least two (2) years, a unique and subsidised permanent residency can be sought which then enables you to access all the rights and responsibilities of being an Australian permanent resident.