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Australian Skilled Migration Visa - Megathread

  • 05-01-2012 4:32pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 179 ✭✭ DeclanClune


    Just thought I'd drop a line to all forum members looking at migrating to Australia to advise that Australian Immigration (DIAC) will be changing the process of applying for a skilled migration visa.

    The Skilled Migrant Selection Register (SkillSelect) is a new program which will ensure the selection of the best and brightest skilled migrants from a pool of intending migrants.

    SkillSelect is a major reform in the way Australia selects skilled migrants.
    This will seriously impact anyone that is considering applying for permanent resdiency in Australia on a skilled migration visa.

    The changes are expected to be implemented on 1 July 2012.

    So how will it work ?
    SkillSelect is based on an electronic two-stage process whereby intending migrants first submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) and they MAY subsequently be invited by the department to make a skilled migration visa application. Note however that THERE IS NO GUARANTEE OF THIS.

    Those interested in independent, family, state or territory sponsored and business skills migration will now be required to receive an invitation first from DIAC in order to lodge a visa application.

    When lodging an EOI, you must meet the points criteria, have your skills assessed and any English language test already carried out so there will be a financial outlay without any guarantee of being invited to submit a visa application.

    The higher the points you score, the better the chance of being selected.
    This will ensure that the best applicants in each occupation are identified and selected first.

    Bear in mind that occupation quotas will also apply in some cases. Once the ceiling for a particular occupation is reached, no more invitations will be issued until the following year when the quota is renewed again.

    My advise - if you are looking at applying for permanent residency, you should consider getting your application lodged as soon as possible to prevent you being affected by the July 2012 changes. If you have any concerns, make sure to get the correct advise as early as possible so you can take appropriate action in time.

    Declan Clune


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Comments



  • Welcome to Boards Declan, I see noted your MARA number but you forgot to mention you work for Visa First.




  • Declan has provided some good posts so far and factual. Once he is not pimping any services/website, we're all happy.
    Keep on trucking Declan




  • Old skilled Migration Process

    1: Apply submit skills assessment - wait for response from assessing body
    2: Once skills assessed submit visa application - wait for response from DIAC
    3: Handle any further DIAC queries more , police medical etc
    4: Get Visa

    After change

    1: Apply submit skills assessment - wait for response from assessing body
    2: Wait for invitation to apply for Visa
    3: Once Invited Submit visa application - wait for response from DIAC
    4: Handle any further DIAC queries more , police medical etc
    5: Get Visa

    Would this be correct?




  • Zambia wrote: »
    Old skilled Migration Process

    1: Apply submit skills assessment - wait for response from assessing body
    2: Once skills assessed submit visa application - wait for response from DIAC
    3: Handle any further DIAC queries more , police medical etc
    4: Get Visa

    After change

    1: Apply submit skills assessment - wait for response from assessing body
    2: Register your interest and Wait for invitation to apply for Visa
    3: Once Invited Submit visa application - wait for response from DIAC (your application has to be submitted within 60 Days of the invitation)
    4: Handle any further DIAC queries more , police medical etc
    5: Get Visa

    Would this be correct?

    If you don't get invited within 2 years you have to re-register




  • Ouch, that is good though its unfair for some to get PR then sit on it while others wait in the queue.

    Plus I imagine after 2 years it would be worth re-applying as your skill base would be higher.


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  • @ Mandrake - I am posting as an independent agent so there is no mention of Visafirst in my posts. I work and provide visa advice and visa assistance to a number of companies including Visafirst though alright.

    @ regarding the topic -
    I believe the reason why DIAC is bringing in the new system is to allow them to process applications in occupations that they need - as and when they need them. The system is to encourage a Demand orientated approach to bringing in skilled migrants rather than a supply approach.

    So it is unfair on people that might meet the points criteria as they could be sitting in the pool for up to 2 years and actually never be invited to apply for a visa by DIAC while other people that apply at a much later date could submit an EOI and could be invited to submit their visa application immediately.




  • @ Mandrake - I am posting as an independent agent so there is no mention of Visafirst in my posts. I work and provide visa advice and visa assistance to a number of companies including Visafirst though alright.

    Fair enough Declan I think I might have seen you on TV on a few RTE programs, just thought I would throw that info out there in case anyone who might have attended VF expo and never got the chance to ask any questions might be able to do so now.


    @ regarding the topic -
    I believe the reason why DIAC is bringing in the new system is to allow them to process applications in occupations that they need - as and when they need them. The system is to encourage a Demand orientated approach to bringing in skilled migrants rather than a supply approach.

    So it is unfair on people that might meet the points criteria as they could be sitting in the pool for up to 2 years and actually never be invited to apply for a visa by DIAC while other people that apply at a much later date could submit an EOI and could be invited to submit their visa application immediately.


    I think you are right Declan, DIAC is trying to target exactly what occupations it requires and how many of each then they will be inviting what it considers the most suitable candidates where as the current system anyone who met the threshold could just apply wily-nily.

    Its going suit some people but definitely going to disappoint others.




  • hi all, just at the early stages in applying for oz visa, can some 1 please tell me where i can get a skills assessment test done(carpenter). living in dublin. also i've been self employed for the last 8 years would tax returns be enough proof or do i need more evidence. please dont tell me i have to knock on previous clients doors and ask for references!!! cheers thanks




  • Do these changes affect visas where a company is sponsoring you or is it just the skilled migration ones?




  • I too have been looking into moving to Oz or new zealand. i have looked at all the skills assessments but unfortunately my occupation is not on there:( im an unemployed plant operator,(i see loads of jobs advertised on different sites yet plant operator is not one of them:( i am almost 42 and would be leaving my wife and family behind for 12months or more.

    how does someone of my age get a work visa:(? cheers:o


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  • ANAPOLIS wrote: »
    I too have been looking into moving to Oz or new zealand. i have looked at all the skills assessments but unfortunately my occupation is not on there:( im an unemployed plant operator,(i see loads of jobs advertised on different sites yet plant operator is not one of them:( i am almost 42 and would be leaving my wife and family behind for 12months or more.

    how does someone of my age get a work visa:(? cheers:o

    Being honest - very slim chance. You can try get someone to sponsor you, but that can be extremely difficult from Ireland.
    Do a search on the forum others have asked the same question




  • hussey wrote: »
    Being honest - very slim chance. You can try get someone to sponsor you, but that can be extremely difficult from Ireland.
    Do a search on the forum others have asked the same question
    why do you say i have a slim chance,because im almost 42? well if theres a chance,that will do for me.:cool:

    i was kinda hoping Declan would have a go at answering it,as through my numerous searches i have seen him giving advice,not just on Boards,on the way to go.
    I have a mate of similar age going south very soon,he is being sponsored but this was a complete fluke of being in the right place at the right time,jealous?dam right!:D

    cheers,i'll keep searching




  • Hello Anapolis,

    The reality is that Sponsorship is very difficult to obtain unless you are in Health and Engineering fields. It is not impossible but is very difficult due to a number of factors including

    - demand for sponsorship from those onshore in Australia (such as backpackers) is very high
    - Immigration impose very strict criteria on sponsoring companies so therefore there is a reluctance to sponsor on behalf of employers
    - larger companies tend to be able to sponsor moreso than small companies
    - many companies operate similar to Ireland in that they engage subcontractors as opposed to direct employees and therefore sponsorship is not an option
    - when a company sponsors you they also sponsor your family unit and this can 'scare' some sponsors due to financial obligations if something goes wrong
    - most companies require you to be in Australia where they can view your work and this is not possible for applicants over 31 as you will not have a visa with work rights
    - plant operators are a popular occupation whereby people are seeking sponsorship and many end up finding a sponsor through contacts as opposed to jobs advertised by recruitment agencies etc

    So, what are your options?

    - study the skilled occupations list for 457 visas as options for plant operators are limited however many plant operators have other skills as well
    - visit newspapers in Australia for vacancies
    - visit gumtree.com as some companies advertise there
    - use every contact in Australia to see if they know of any vacancies
    - contact companies direct who may have work in the area you wish to settle (do a search for projects and tenders won etc)
    - contact irish companies who advertise in papers such as the irishecho as whilst they may not have vacancies they may know of others
    - sell yourself with a good CV, referees and have access to technology such as skype etc and be available during Australian business hours
    - be familiar with the criteria the company and you must satisfy with Immigration so you are informed when you approach potential sponsors. Do a search for 457 on www.immi.gov.au
    - if you are successful in finding a sponsor find out what your visa options long term will be as most companies will only offer a 457 visa which is a temporary visa of up to 4 years and you would need to know how you can remain permanently as permanent residency is NOT guaranteed

    I do not recommend

    - paying companies to find a sponsor - such services should be free
    - going to Australia on a holiday visa in the hope of finding a sponsor (we have had a number of people recently turned back at the airport in Australia due to trying to enter Australia with the intention of finding work which is against the conditions of the holiday visa

    My final bit of advice is that sometimes it hard to accept the negative information such as the realistic chance of people securing sponsorship and it is easier to believe what you want to hear. I have no reason to be negative but take pride in being honest and realistic.

    I hope my reply helps somewhat and I wish you all the best in finding a sponsor.

    Liz




  • ^ Probably one of the best posts in a while. Should really be stickyed somewhere.




  • mandrake04 wrote: »
    ^ Probably one of the best posts in a while. Should really be stickyed somewhere.

    You got there before me!:D

    what a fantastic and helpful post that was from someone who knows what they are talking about. i have taken everything on board and will follow the advice given.

    fair play to you for taking the time to respond in such detail. thanks Liz.




  • I have stickyed the thread ... But usually people don't read sticky.
    But hopefully we can use this as the reoccurring 'How can I get to Australia, I am older than 31' question.




  • backrow wrote: »
    hi all, just at the early stages in applying for oz visa, can some 1 please tell me where i can get a skills assessment test done(carpenter). living in dublin. also i've been self employed for the last 8 years would tax returns be enough proof or do i need more evidence. please dont tell me i have to knock on previous clients doors and ask for references!!! cheers thanks

    Hello backrow,

    A skill assessment for a skilled visa for a Carpenter is as follows

    - the governing body TRA (Trades Recognition Australia) have appointed two organisations - Vetassess and Victorian University.
    - Vetassess may require you to attend a technical interview or a practical test (mostly conducted in UK not Ireland)
    - Victoria University conduct technical interviews via skype at designated locations in Ireland.
    - the key to success is your paper trail which includes training documents, employer statements and supporting tax documents. Self employed applicants need more documentation such as proof of business operating, tax documents, supplier and client statements (as applicable) AS WELL AS evidence of initial training and work experience
    - Victoria University is a good option for irish applicants as you don't have to wait for a date for the practical exam (which may be deemed necessary under Vetassess) and therefore can avoid additional travel costs
    - both websites offer comprehensive instructions on the process but if you do need help research in full and I don't just mean price - just because someone says they are a visa agent does not mean they are experienced in preparing trade applications or experienced in carpentry trade applications - check credentials/experience of the person who will work with you as opposed to the person who signs you up and make sure they are registered with www.mara.gov.au and get all advice and confirmation of experience in writing (which is required under the code of conduct of MARA)

    Please note - it is a good idea from the outset to research

    - skill assessment criteria for work experience as well as
    - basic visa requirements such as 12/24 months work experience as well as
    - work experience requirements under the points test

    each of the the above is different so research fully to ensure you can 'tick all boxes' before commencing work on each stage as you will need quite a paper trail and need to understand exactly what is required from the outset. Remember the end result is Permanent Residency for 5 years and the opportunity for citizenship!

    Finally, move quickly as July 1 is not far away.

    Good luck! Liz




  • hussey wrote: »
    I have stickyed the thread ... But usually people don't read sticky.
    But hopefully we can use this as the reoccurring 'How can I get to Australia, I am older than 31' question.



    Might be a good idea to cut/paste and rename the thread to further assist readers. Liz




  • Hello Mobius42...the changes mention by the OP refers to Skilled Migration.




  • LizOHagan wrote: »
    backrow wrote: »
    hi all, just at the early stages in applying for oz visa, can some 1 please tell me where i can get a skills assessment test done(carpenter). living in dublin. also i've been self employed for the last 8 years would tax returns be enough proof or do i need more evidence. please dont tell me i have to knock on previous clients doors and ask for references!!! cheers thanks

    Hello backrow,

    A skill assessment for a skilled visa for a Carpenter is as follows

    - the governing body TRA (Trades Recognition Australia) have appointed two organisations - Vetassess and Victorian University.
    - Vetassess may require you to attend a technical interview or a practical test (mostly conducted in UK not Ireland)
    - Victoria University conduct technical interviews via skype at designated locations in Ireland.
    - the key to success is your paper trail which includes training documents, employer statements and supporting tax documents. Self employed applicants need more documentation such as proof of business operating, tax documents, supplier and client statements (as applicable) AS WELL AS evidence of initial training and work experience
    - Victoria University is a good option for irish applicants as you don't have to wait for a date for the practical exam (which may be deemed necessary under Vetassess) and therefore can avoid additional travel costs
    - both websites offer comprehensive instructions on the process but if you do need help research in full and I don't just mean price - just because someone says they are a visa agent does not mean they are experienced in preparing trade applications or experienced in carpentry trade applications - check credentials/experience of the person who will work with you as opposed to the person who signs you up and make sure they are registered with www.mara.gov.au and get all advice and confirmation of experience in writing (which is required under the code of conduct of MARA)

    Please note - it is a good idea from the outset to research

    - skill assessment criteria for work experience as well as
    - basic visa requirements such as 12/24 months work experience as well as
    - work experience requirements under the points test

    each of the the above is different so research fully to ensure you can 'tick all boxes' before commencing work on each stage as you will need quite a paper trail and need to understand exactly what is required from the outset. Remember the end result is Permanent Residency for 5 years and the opportunity for citizenship!

    Finally, move quickly as July 1 is not far away.

    Good luck! Liz
    Thanks very much for that liz everything regarding evidence of being in buisness for the last eight years should'nt be a problem ie (tak returns, client referals, contracts, supplyer statements etc.) its previous to that where i worked is the problem,unfortunately my old boss is deceased several years and his buisness no longer exists. will they except the last 8 years as been sufficient information. thanks again. backrow


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  • Great idea Done




  • Hi,

    I have been gathering my paperwork together and am now going to make an application for a trade assessment. I'm an electrician by the way. I have looked into vetassess and vic uni and the certificates received from both are different. Is this in name only or is it more advantageous to have one over the other. Vic uni seems quite a bit cheaper and faster..




  • Hello..both will give you the OTSR. Vic Uni is usually quicker as you are just waiting for the technical interview. Due to July 1st changes I would look at the quickest at this stage - both websites give information on what is required.




  • Thanks Liz,

    I have checked em both out. I thought the vetassess site wasn't the easiest to find your way round. I now see that I need to apply to the TRA for the ARTC, I think. Anyway my mind is now made up on which one to apply to so thanks again.

    Incidentally I am planning on heading to your home city as well. Don't know if you mentioned that on this thread or another...




  • Liz / Declan / Anyone else

    I have been reading all the information that you have provided and it is very helpful, thank you. I am just wondering can you provide some information / advice regarding my personal situation.

    I am on a sponsored 457 visa currently. I have been working for the previous 12 months with my employer.I am located in a regional area and I think that my employer is willing to act as a sponsor.


    AFAIK the two most suitable visa options are ENS 856 (my preference) or ENS 857. (Assuming my employer is willing to sponsor)

    As I have only completed 1 year in my profession it seems that I would need to get my skills assess in order to qualify for ENS 856. I work as a Town Planner, what is involved in getting my skills assessed? Costs? Processing times etc?

    I know that if I am working in my profession for 2 years that I do not need this assessment.Would you advise me to work another year before lodging my visa application and forego the need for the skills assessment or to lodge the application asap and undergo the assessment?

    I would also have the option of ENS 857 however i am worried that this visa is too restrictive and will tie me to my employer. Does this visa require me to stay with my employer for 2 years?

    Essentially I am confused as to which visa to apply for. Is there a difference between the processing times of a 856 or a 857?

    Finally, what sort of fees is my employer looking at this time around for the visa?

    I am worried as I have heard that changes to the visa systems are coming and I dont want to miss an opportunity to gain a PR by not acting swiftly enough.

    Thank you for taking the time to read this.




  • Hey guys.

    I think this is a great thread to start and hopefully everyone will put their own questions/thoughts/experiences in the one thread.

    There us so much information out there its hard to take it all in. Havin input from experienced people is invaluable.

    Like everyone here were lookin into 175 visa to stay here. Well be applying onshore and on 2nd whv at the moment. Do you get a bridging visa when you apply here and leave australia to activate your new visa IF you get it? Or does anybody have any idea how this works.



    Thanks for your time!!




  • gitterbug wrote: »
    Hey guys.

    I think this is a great thread to start and hopefully everyone will put their own questions/thoughts/experiences in the one thread.

    There us so much information out there its hard to take it all in. Havin input from experienced people is invaluable.

    Like everyone here were lookin into 175 visa to stay here. Well be applying onshore and on 2nd whv at the moment. Do you get a bridging visa when you apply here and leave australia to activate your new visa IF you get it? Or does anybody have any idea how this works.



    Thanks for your time!!
    No you don't get a bridging visa for the 175 visa. Its an off shore visa therefore you need to be outside australia when its granted.




  • gitterbug wrote: »
    Hey guys.

    I think this is a great thread to start and hopefully everyone will put their own questions/thoughts/experiences in the one thread.

    There us so much information out there its hard to take it all in. Havin input from experienced people is invaluable.

    Like everyone here were lookin into 175 visa to stay here. Well be applying onshore and on 2nd whv at the moment. Do you get a bridging visa when you apply here and leave australia to activate your new visa IF you get it? Or does anybody have any idea how this works.

    Thanks for your time!!

    Have a read of http://www.immi.gov.au/skilled/general-skilled-migration/175/ and do a search on the forum for these simple questions.

    You apply for 175 and it is classed as a offshore visa, which means you have to arrive in Australia - so yes leave and come back.
    But no bridging visa I am afraid.




  • Hi guys,

    I was off the treads for a few days with some questions already answered so no point in answering these again unless you want to send me a private message with more specific details.

    A few general points firstly -

    Please be aware that for the ENS (121/856) and RSMS (119/857) visas, the eligibility criteria can differ slightly depending on if you are applying onshore or offshore.

    To lodge an onshore application, you must be in Australia on a valid visa when the new visa is to be granted. Note that you can only apply for an onshore visa if you are currently on CERTAIN visa subclasses only. Fior example working holiday visas in general is not deemed an eligible visa in order to lodge an onshore visa application. The eligible visa subclasses can vary depending on the onshore visa that you are applying for. So just because you are physically in Australia, that does not necessarily mean that you will be applying for an onshore visa.

    An offshore visa CAN be applied for while you are IN AUSTRALIA. When the visa is ready to be granted, you must leave Australia in order to meet the offshore criteria. But in most cases, you can apply for the visa and remain in Australia under some other valid visa while you wait for your offshore visa to be granted.

    Note that bridging visas are only eligible for certain visas. If you are applying for a 457, 856, 857 for example - you would be eligible to get a bridging visa to remain on in AUstralia if you are on a working holdiay visa while waiting for the 457, 856, 857 visa to be granted.
    If you are waiting for a 175 or 176 visa for example - you cannot get a bridging visa to remain in AUstralia if you are on a working holiday visa while waiting for either of these to be granted.

    Hope this helps,

    Declan Clune


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  • Hi Laoisefor liam,

    You are currently on a sponsorship (457) and looking to remain on in Oz permanently - right?

    The Employer Nomination Scheme may be an option but there are a few requirements that must be met in order to be eligible

    Meet one of the following:
    1. Earn a salary with a base of AUD 250K (if only) - OR -
    2. Work in Australia for at least 2 years under a certain visa subclass. The last 12 months must be with the employer in question. Note that the list of eligible visas includes 457 sponsorship but does not include the 417 working holiday visa -OR -
    3. Have your skills assessed - as you mentioned. BUT this also requires a minimum of 3 years full time work experience in your occupation prior to lodging the visa. I understand that you just have one year's experience.

    There are other criteria including age, job offer, qualifications etc that also need to be met

    The the ENS and RSMS visas are the fastest permanent resident visas to be processed by DIAC currently.

    Other visa options for you:
    Regional Sponsored migration scheme (119 / 857) - this will give you permanent residency for Australia.

    You need a job offer from the employer in a regional part of Australia.
    This excludes Sydney, Newcastle, Wollongong, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Melbourne. Note that Perth is now considered regional FOR THIS VISA CLASS.
    There is no skill assessment required but you need to have relevant qualificatiosn and experience to satisfy the employers own employment requirements.
    Be under 45 and have functional English
    The thing is that you are required to remain with the employer for 2 years on this visa
    for a 2 year period. There is no skill assessment required in this case

    The the ENS and RSMS visas are the fastest permanent resident visas to be processed by DIAC currently.

    State Sponsored Migration Visa (176). This will allow you to work anywhere in the nominated state for the first 2 years, thereafter, you are free to move anywhere else across Australia.
    This visa has a points requirement and you need to have your skills assessed. However, the process for this visa class is expected to change from 1 July and there will be no guarantee of being eligible for this visa class going forward.

    The current processing time is approx 8 - 12 months.

    NOTE THAT PROCESSING TIMES ARE NOT GUARANTEED AND SHOULD BE USED AS A GUIDE ONLY.

    In my opinion, if you are happy with this employer - the rsms visa would be the best option to choose. If you intend leaving the employer, then the state sponsored visa is the way to go.

    Hope this helps.

    Declan Clune


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