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Australian visas

WHY IS MY AUSTRALIAN VISA APPLICATION TAKING SO LONG?

WHY IS MY AUSTRALIAN VISA APPLICATION TAKING SO LONG?

We frequently get asked this question by clients, and it is not an easy one to answer.

In reality, there are myriad reasons why applications take a long time to process including:

  • the Department of Home Affairs allocates greater priorities in respect of some visa classes with the result that more staff are available to deal with them,

  • Some visa categories, such as the business skill visas, can be quite complex and considerable time can be spent analysing large numbers of supporting documents.

  • In other cases, the reasons for delay are because the application has not been well prepared, meaning that case officers need to go back to the applicant for further information before a decision can be made.

Some interesting statistics relating to processing and delays generally include:

  • the Department currently has a staff of 2,500 visa and citizenship decision makers,

  • an additional 100 processing staff have been hired to assist in the backlog of over 250,000 citizenship applications,

  • the Department has recently indicated that it is now processing decision ready, low risk ENS/RSMS cases as a priority as a means of increasing efficiency. There are currently 30,000 ENS applications under processing,

  • 82,000 first stage partner applications are in the pipeline and 156 000 second stage applications

So far as partner visa applications are concerned, it seems that the Department has recognised that the delays of up to 2 years are not really acceptable, and we are seeing signs that it is taking positive steps to facilitate the transition to permanent residence by not requiring a separate application to be made, but instead finalising both first and second stage applications at the same time. This is a good initiative which goes some way to alleviating the stress many applicants are experiencing as a result of lengthy processing delays.

For further information and advice, please contact Nevett Ford Lawyers Melbourne:

Telephone: +61 3 9614 7111

Email: melbourne@nevettford.com.au

 

Global Talent Visa

On Sunday 18th March 2018 the subclass 457 visa was abolished and immediately replaced with the Temporary Skilled Shortage Visa (TSS visa).  Against the backdrop of this well publicised reform, The Minister for Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs, The Hon Alan Tudge MP announced a further expansion of this program, unveiled as the Global Talent Visa.  The Global Talent Visa will in effect be a new stream of the TSS program that will apply in two different scenarios:

1.       Established business wanting to employ high income earners from abroad with salaries of AUD$180,000 and above; or

2.       For proposed employees of “approved” start-up entities which operates within STEM fields. 

Prior to its abolition, there was widespread criticism that the 457 visa program was no longer fit for purpose and this served as a significant driver for its reform and ultimate replacement with the TSS visa.  So far a lot of focus of the TSS visa has been on the occupation lists and the restrictions in this area however, the mechanics of the TSS visa limit not just the types of roles which are permitted to be filled by overseas nationals, but also to limit the types of businesses that are permitted to use this program.  For many occupations, minimum turnover and minimum existing employee head counts are required before the business can access the TSS program.

These additional limitations can dramatically reduce the options available for start-ups.  Under the Global Talent Visa pathway, there will be no specific occupation limitations however, under both streams, the business will be required to demonstrate that the appointment will have the capacity to pass on skills or to develop other Australian employees.  

The 12-month trial, if successful will allow the visa holders to access Permanent residency in ways that mirror the existing Permanent Residency pathways for TSS visa holders with occupations on the Medium to Long Term visa.  Like all TSS visas, the applicants will be required to meet health and character and have the skills and experience necessary to perform the role. 

Should you have any questions about the above information or if you want to discuss how your business can access these arrangements in more detail please do not hesitate to contact us for a confidential discussion on (03) 9614 7111 on send us an on-line enquiry.