Migration to Australia

Skilled Migration Visa

Australian migration system is considered as most demand driven and applicants friendly. Each year Australia approves more migration visas than any other similar countries. Even the number of occupation categories is considerably high that Australia is currently permitting. Due to its rapid economic growth and lowest density of population, Australia is a perfect migration destination for professionals who really care for their career and family.

What Are the Basic Requirements for Skilled Migration?

Professionals should have required education and multiple years of successful professional experience for skilled migration. The current skilled immigration requirement for Australia is:

 Age should be below 50 years

 At least a Bachelor / Masters degree completed

 Should have experience on SOL/CSOL listed occupation

 Should achieve at least 60 points according to DIBP specification

 Should have good command on English (Min. IELTS score 6.0 should be provided later)

Some SOL and State Sponsored Occupations that are in Demand

All Computing Professionals, Training & Development Professional, Project Builder, All Engineering Professionals, Community Worker, Urban & Regional Planner, All Environmental Professionals, Social Worker, Research and Development Manager, All Agricultural Professionals, Financial Investment Adviser, Production Manager, Architect, Financial Institution Branch Manager, ICT Business Development Manager, Life Scientist, Geologist, University Lecturer, Chemist, Healthcare Professionals, Metallurgist, Human Resource Professional, Construction Project Manager, Hotel or Motel Manager, Conference and Event Organizer, Program or Project Administrator, Call or Contact Centre Manager, Occupational Health and Safety Adviser, Laboratory Manager, Veterinary Doctor, Industrial Pharmacist and many more.

More job opportunities, a secure place to live

 A total of 1,28,550 Skilled Migration Visas will be issued between the period of July 2015 to June 2016

 Leading Australian job portal Seek advertises about 120,000 – 140,000 job positions on a daily basis

 Full-time average weekly cash earning is Australian $1,464.40 as on May 2013 reported by Australian Bureau of   Statistics

 According to The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) report, Melbourne has named as the most livable city in the world. Three other Australian cities (Sydney, Perth, and Adelaide) claimed positions in the top ten as well

 Australia has attracted more than 7 million people who have been successfully migrated there

Skilled Migration Criteria

Applicants for skilled migration need to meet strict threshold criteria. These criteria Include:

Age » You must be aged between 18 and 49 at the time of invitation.

English Language Ability » Non-Native English Speakers will have to take English language test (in most cases, the IELTS). Natives might be exempted from taking IELTS but they are prescribed to take it for claiming more points. The usual or threshold requirement for IELTS is 6.0 that is a qualifying score for most of the occupations.

Skills Assessment » For skill verification, all applicants will have to undergo skills assessment from the relevant assessment authority. A number of skill assessment bodies are available for varying skills having different verification requirements. In most cases, the skills assessment will be based on the applicant’s qualifications and work experience, though in some cases English language ability and formal examinations are required.

Skill Select » From 1 July 2012, most applicants will need to go through the SkillSelect system – this involves of making an Expression of Interest and receiving an invitation from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection to apply which usually requires expert guidelines.

Skill Select Expression of Interest (EOI) System
The Department of Immigration and Border Protection introduced the Skill Select System on 1 July 2012. Applicants for a number of visa subclasses need to go through an Expression of Interest (EOI) prior to lodging their final applications.

The following types of application can be lodged through Skill Select:
» Skilled Independent Subclass 189 Visas
» Skilled Nominated Subclass 190 Visas
» Skilled Regional (Provisional) Subclass 489 Visas

To lodge an EOI, you must have completed your skills assessment and your English language test (usually IELTS). You also may wish to obtain a nomination from a state or territory government prior to lodging an EOI as this will improve your chances of getting an invitation.

For Independent and Family Sponsored Applicants, the Department of Immigration and Border Protection regularly reviews the EOIs which have been lodged. They issue the eligible candidates with an invitation to make an application for skilled points tested migration.

If you are looking at being nominated by a state or territory government, you will need to lodge an EOI. Once the state or territory government completes your nomination, you would usually receive an invitation from SkillSelect. There are two things to bear in mind though:

» You must have a passing score to receive an invitation (currently 60 points for Skilled Points Tested applicants)
» You will not receive an invitation if the occupational ceiling for your occupation has been reached

Once you receive an invitation, you will need to make your visa application within 60 days. There is no assurance that you will be re-invited if you fail to file your visa application. At best you can be invited twice before the EOI is removed from the system. Feel free to contact us if you would like a full assessment of your situation, or if you would like our assistance in making your visa application.

The Skilled Occupation List (SOL) is a list of skilled occupations that deliver high value skills needed by the Australian economy. The SOL only applies to independent, which is non-State/Territory government nominated skilled migration. It aims to meet medium to long-term skills needs of high value occupations, rather than immediate short term shortages. This means your occupation must be on the SOL if you are applying for points based skilled migration independently.

According to DIBP, the Consolidated Sponsored Occupation List (CSOL) is relevant for Points based skilled migration applicants who are nominated by a State or Territory government agency under a State Migration Plan. The CSOL only applies to non-independent, which is State/Territory government nominated skilled migration.

If you have an occupation on the CSOL, you may be eligible for State and Territory nomination or family sponsorship. States and Territory governments, have access to a wider range of occupations on the Consolidated Sponsored Occupation List (CSOL).

If you are applying for Skilled Migration, you will need to prove your English language ability. The required level of English depends on the visa subclass you are applying for and there are 3 different levels of English which may be relevant:

» Superior English
» Proficient English
» Competent English

This means that you would need to provide evidence of English testing at the time of application, however, some skills assessing authorities require IELTS score result during assessment. As it can take some time to obtain a booking for a test and to receive the results, you may wish to plan to take the English test well ahead of time. Tests conducted up to 3 years prior to lodgment of a skilled visa application will be accepted by DIBP.

The IELTS test is the most common way of evidencing English language ability. Either the Academic or General Training versions of the test are acceptable to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection, but some skills assessing authorities require applicants to sit the Academic version. You will need to obtain a minimum score in each band of the IELTS (Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking) in a single sitting. The threshold requirement is 6.0 yet it might vary according to the nominated occupation’s requirement against the state. One can take IELTS in either General Training or Academic module once General IELTS is the requirement but when Academic IELTS is the requirement one will have to take Academic IELTS.

The Occupational English Test (OET) is also accepted as evidence of proficient and superior levels of English. The OET is only appropriate for medical and allied health professionals. It is likely that other tests will be added to the list of acceptable tests in the future.

Australian Government Abolish the 457 Visa

The Temporary Skill Shortage visa (TSS) (subclass 482) has officially replaced the temporary skilled visa program (subclass 457). The Government’s decision to replace the 457 visas is to assist businesses in addressing genuine skills shortages and to protect Australian workers and give them the first preference for potential employment. Results Migration takes us through what all of these changes mean for new applicants.

This replacement brings many new eligibility requirements and complexities for applicants, including added work experience requirements, higher English language skills and the visa itself is far more costly than the 457.

Three streams available

The first list is the “Short Term Skilled Occupations List” (STOL) and will replace the Consolidated Skilled Occupations List (CSOL). The second is the “Medium and Long-Term Strategic Skills List” (MLTSSL), which will replace the Skilled Occupations List (SOL).

Short-term stream

The first list is the “Short Term Skilled Occupations List” (STOL) and will replace the Consolidated Skilled Occupations List (CSOL). This list has been designed for employers to fill skill gaps temporarily

 Valid for two years

 Can be renewed once for two more years

 No pathway to permanent residency

 Occupation list will be reassessed every six months

 Applicant needs to show genuine intention to stay temporarily in Australia

 Similar English proficiency to 457 visa

Short-term stream fees

 Primary Applicant – $1,150 or app. BDT 70,000

 Dependent over 18 – $1,150or app. BDT 70,000

 Dependent under 18 – $290or app. BDT 17,750

 Here calculate 1 AUS Dollar approximately BDT 61

Medium-term stream

The second list is the “Medium and Long-Term Strategic Skills List” (MLTSSL), which will replace the Skilled Occupations List (SOL).

 Similar to the 457 visa

 Valid for four years

 Possibility for permanent residency after 3 years

 Occupations are considered critical to the economy

 Possible caveats on occupations

 Higher English proficiency expectations

Medium-term stream fees

 Primary Applicant – $2,400or app. BDT 1 ,46,750

 Dependent over – $2,400or app. BDT 1 ,46,750

 Dependent under 18 – $600or app. BDT 36,500

 Labor agreement stream

 Only to be used in exceptional circumstances

 Must need that cannot be met by the Australian labor market

 Can only be used if no other visas are available

 No formal English requirements needed

Do I need work experience?

Yes. The Australian Government has now decided that applicants will need at least two years of work experience in the relevant occupation and field of expertise. This is a complete change from the 457 visas, where one could just have the relevant qualification. This is one of the bigger changes and may make it difficult to be eligible for the TSS visa.

What if I was on a 457 before 2017?

Don’t worry; the old 457 rules will still apply to you! The Government has introduced ‘grandfathering’ provisions which mean that if you already held a 457 visa you will retain access to the pathway to permanent residency. The work experience requirement will also stay the same, as will the age and language requirements.

What if I want to change jobs?

The TSS condition 8607 means that if you wish to change occupations, you must obtain a new nomination from a sponsoring employer and apply for a new visa. This is obviously significantly different to the 457 where you could just show you have the skills required for the new occupation.

Differences between the two main streams:

Short-Term Medium-Term
Duration 2 years 4 years
Renewal Can be renewed onshore only once Can be renewed onshore
Permanent Residency No pathway to permanent residency Permanent residency pathway after three years
Occupation List STSOL - can be reviewed every 6 months MLTSSL – only ‘critical’ or ‘high value’ occupations are considered
English Requirements (IELTS or equivalent) Similar to the 457 visas: Overall score of at least 5 with minimum score of 4.5 in each of the 4 test components Higher level required than 457 visas: Overall score of at least 5 with a minimum of 5 in each component
Exemptions to English Requirements
  • Passport holders from the UK, Ireland, USA, Canada and New Zealand
  • People who have studied in English for at least 5 years
  • Intra-company transfers where the base salary is at least $96,400or app. BDT 58,94,600
  • Diplomatic/Consular appointments
Fees Primary Applicant $1,150or app. BDT 70,000 Primary Applicant – $2,400or app. BDT 1 ,46,750
Employer Nomination Fees $330or app. BDT 20,000
Employer Sponsorship Fees $420or app. BDT 25,600
Prior Work Experience Two years’ work experience in the nominated occupation or related field
Age Maximum age of 45
Health Requirement All applicants must show they do not have any medical conditions which are of public health concern or would result in a significant cost to the Australian community.
International Trade Obligations Labor market testing (LMT)
Character Test Mandatory police check for all applicants from each country lived in for 12 or more months in the past 10 years
Adult Children The visa will be valid until the child’s 23rd birthday
Employers Must meet a non-discriminatory workforce test
Salary Minimum salary

Changes for Sponsors

A Training Levy will be introduced for the TSS visa. This means sponsors will not need to prove the training of Australians in the business to become an approved sponsor. A TSS sponsorship will be valid for five years.

Changes to Nomination Requirements

The TSS visa is only available for full-time positions. The TSS also specifically requires the sponsors to pay the nomination fees.

Industries affected

A significant amount of occupations have been cut from both lists, leaving the short-term stream with 268 occupations and the medium-term stream with a small amount of 167 occupations. Such substantial cuts suggest that nearly all industries will be affected by this change. Many affected industries are actively working to have ‘critical jobs’ reinstated. Additionally, many occupations will find a variety of caveats that may be difficult to meet.

What does this really mean?

The 457 visa was very popular and successful; however with Australia continuously changing it was in need of an upgrade. The new TSS visa, while more challenging for applicants to acquire, will actually benefit businesses as it will be easier to meet the necessary training requirements. Whether the TSS is successful in addressing Australia’s skill shortages will be assessed in the next few years, but for now, we will just have to see how it unfolds.