Author Archives: Vaneer Randhawa

Critical Updates for Australian Students

Home Affairs is currently in the process of reviewing and revising evidentiary requirements for student visa applicants from certain countries.

In the meantime, major change is announced in relation to applicants from Nepal wishing to lodge their student visa application from 1 May 2019 and study in VET sector will  be required to provide evidence of English as well as financial capacity (irrespective of whether the application will be processed under streamlined arrangements).

As this is a new arrangement, the existing document check tool may not necessarily reflect this new arrangement until the system is fully updated.

As some readers may recall, student visa framework was reviewed in 2016 whereby the combined country and education provider evidence framework became based on immigration outcomes, and guides whether a visa applicant is required to provide evidence of English language proficiency and financial capability at the time of the student visa application.

There is no connection between the evidence framework and the quality of an education provider.

Under the simplified student visa framework (SSVF) each country and each Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS)-registered education provider is allocated an evidence level. Education provider and country evidence levels are then combined to guide financial and English evidence requirements for student visa applicants.

All education providers have access to the benefits of streamlined evidence requirements. Education providers that obtain the lowest evidence level have streamlined evidence requirements for all countries, while education providers with the highest evidence level only receive these benefits for students from the lowest evidence level countries.

Where streamlined evidence requirements apply, the student visa applicant will generally be able to satisfy the department of their financial capacity by declaration and they will not generally need to provide evidence their English proficiency. However, we can request further evidence where appropriate.

Where regular evidence requirements apply the student will generally be required to provide evidence of their financial and English language capacity.

New skilled regional provisional visas

The new skilled regional provisional visas will be for skilled migrants, and dependent family members, who want to live and work in Australia.

There will be two new skilled regional provisional visas introduced in November 2019:
Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) visa: for people sponsored by an employer in regional Australia.

Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa: for people who are nominated by a State or Territory government or sponsored by an eligible family member to live and work in regional Australia.

Holders of the new skilled regional provisional visas will be able to apply for a Permanent Residence visa
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Changes to Partner Visa – Effective April 17th

Immigration have announced that they will be introducing a change to partner visas. From April 17 2019, the Migration Amendment (Family Violence and Other Measures) Act 2018 will commence. This means the Sponsor (your Australian partner) must apply for sponsorship first and be approved BEFORE the Partner Visa application can be lodged.

Therefore applicants will need to lodge the sponsorship and then lodge the application once the sponsorship has been approved.

Australia’s new immigration minister reveals visa priority

Australia’s new Immigration Minister David Coleman has flagged a revamp of regional visas, saying some towns are begging for migrants.

Currently, there are several visas available to migrants to fills skills shortages in rural and regional Australia.

Towns including Warrnambool in Victoria, the Goldfields region of Western Australia and the entire state of South Australia are asking for thousands of migrants, according to Mr Coleman.

According to figures compiled by the Department of Home Affairs, 10,918 places were awarded under the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme in the 2016-17 financial year.

Along with the 1,670 Skilled Regional visas, they formed about 10 per cent of permanent migration visas.

SKILLED VISAS – INCREASE IN POINTS PASS MARK

From 1 July 2018, there will be an increase in the pass mark for a variety of skilled visas. Skilled Independent (Permanent) (Class SI) Subclass 189, Skilled Nominated (Permanent) (Class SN) Subclass 190; and Skilled Regional Sponsored (Provisional) (Class SP) Subclass 489 applicants wishing to apply for those visas will be required to obtain a pass mark of 65 to be eligible to receive an invitation to apply. This is 5 points higher than previously required.

This new pass mark reflects the high level of interest in skilled migration to Australia and indicates the high caliber of applicants interested in the General Skilled Migration (GSM) program.

Should you have any questions regarding skilled visas, please contact us

Skilling Australians Fund (SAF)

On 9th May 2018, the migration amendment (Skilling Australians Fund) Bill 2018 was passed by the Australian Parliament.
What is the Skilling Australians Fund?
The SAF replaces the ‘training benchmark requirements’ that employers had to meet previously. The purpose of SAF to raise money that will be used to fund vocational education and training for Australian workers. The SAF was administrated by the Department of Education and Training. The levy will impact employers sponsoring offshore migrant workers on both temporary and permanent visas.

When will the SAF Levy be implemented?
The Department of Home Affairs has confirmed the Training Levy will commence on Sunday 12th August 2018

Which visas will be affected?
When implemented the SAF Levy will apply to the following visa types:
Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) subclass 186 visa, and

Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) subclass 187 visa, and

Temporary Skills Shortage (TSS) subclass 482 visa
How much will cost?

The amount payable by Australian employers will mostly dependent on sponsor turnover.

Turnover 186 and 187 Visas PERMANENT TSS 482 Visa TEMPORARY
AUD10 million or more One off payable fee: AUD5000 for each employee AUD1,800 per year for each employee
Less than AUD10 million One off payment: AUD3,000 for each employee AUD1,200 per year for each employee