Finding the best pathway in Skilled Migration

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Finding the best pathway to obtain a skilled visa is not as simple as it may seem. One of the reasons for this is that Australian migration legislation is constantly changing and evolving. The same goes for other important requirements for skilled visas such as skills assessing authorities’ guidelines for skills assessments. Lodging an application without understanding these changing requirements can blow your application out of the water. You can lose your money and possibly your one chance at Australian permanent residence.

According to the Department of Immigration’s Program Report for 2012-2013, General Skilled Migration comprised 57.4% of the entire skill-based stream during the last financial year, with an outcome of 74,020 visas for this period. The skill-based visa stream just by itself accounted for a massive 67.9% of the entire Australian migration program. The skill-based stream includes employer sponsored visas, distinguished talent visas and Business Innovation and Investment visas.

As you can see from the numbers mentioned above, General Skilled Migration plays a critical role not only in the entire Australian migration program, but also in the future of Australia as a competitive and modern nation.

Considering the importance of this topic to our country, the Australian Government (Federal and/or States or Territories) and relevant authorities (such as skills assessment authorities) are constantly revising and updating the relevant laws, policies and general requirements to be in line with Australia’s current economic needs and projections into the future.

It is very important for a prospective visa applicant to be aware and up to date with changes to this important visa program, as they will often affect the outcome of his/her application (positively or negatively).

As a very recent example of how these changes can affect your application, the Australian Computer Society (ACS), which is the skills assessing authority for 24 ICT-based occupations, has recently updated their criteria for skills assessments and points test advice. These changes will not be understood by many applicants and will certainly result in refusals.

The ACS has implemented a new “Skill Level Requirement Met Date” as part of their criteria for a skills assessment, which will be noted on the actual skills assessment letter. This date will affect not only the applicant’s suitability to obtain a skills assessment, but also the actual skilled employment opinion for points under the skilled migration points test.

This change will affect potentially thousands of applicants who have an ICT occupation in two main ways:

  • the new work experience requirement will mean that many people who otherwise would have met the requirements will not meet until they have more work experience, and;
  • potential reduction in the applicant’s skilled work experience, and so fewer points for the skilled visa.

There are possibly ways to combat this in the points test. Each applicant’s situation is different, so you would need to discuss your situation with a migration professional to look at your wider range of points test possibilities and options.

Another common example of how things can change for applicants overnight are the occupations lists for state sponsorship (nomination). Quite often (sometimes multiple times per month), Australian States and Territories update their lists of occupations for which they will sponsor visa applicants. This is often in response to the particular needs and development plans for each state. This will directly affect an applicant’s eligibility for a skilled visa if state sponsorship is required. Sometimes you are working towards a plan believing the occupation is on a particular list and then it disappears.

Again, there may be things you can do to continue with your application, but it gets very complex and you should really seek the help of a migration professional.

All of our Registered Migration Agents at National Visas will ensure that you not only select the best pathway from the beginning, but also that you stay on the right track during the entire process as we are always up to date with the most recent changes and updates from the Department of Immigration and other relevant authorities.

It is important for any person wishing to come to Australia to remember that there are many possible pathways to get a visa, and that sometimes things can unexpectedly change, sometimes for good and other times not so much.

Would you like to know if you qualify for a Skilled Visa?

You can start the process here by taking a free online assessment

I look forward to helping you turn your Australian permanent residence dream into a reality. As a migrant to Australia myself (I am from Mexico and arrived in Australia on a skilled visa), I really understand just how important your visa application is to you.

National Visas’ registered migration agents are skilled, dedicated migration professionals—we’d love to help you achieve your dream.

Regards,

Alfonso Varela
Migration Advisor
MARN: 1278626

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Alfonso Varela

Migration Advisor at National Visas
As a migrant to Australia myself, I really understand just how important your visa application is to you and your family.

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