Skilled migration visa for Australia

4 steps for a skilled migration visa for Australia

So you are going for it.  A move to Australia is the plan for the future.  Now begins the hard work of applying for the skilled migration visa for Australia.

There are 4 steps to lodging a skilled migration visa application you should be aware of:

1. Skill assessment

You would firstly confirm your occupation on the Skilled Occupation List (SOL) or the Consolidated Skilled Occupation List (CSOL) set by the Australian government.


Once you have confirmed your occupation is on either the SOL or CSOL you can then apply for a skill assessment of your occupation for the relevant assessing body.  This is listed next to your occupation in the lists.

Assessing authorities
2. English test score

Most people need bonus points acquired by producing either a proficient or superior score in an English test (IELTS or PTE Academic Test) as part of scoring the minimum passmark of 60 set by the Australian government, migration points skills test.

The PTE Academic test is preferred by most of my clients for ease of booking and undertaking.

3. Expression of Interest

Once you have your positive skill assessment outcome and relevant English test result you can proceed to the stage of lodging an Expression of Interest through the Skillselect system for the particular migration visa you are wish to apply for.

The various types of migration visas:


4. Lodging a skilled migration visa application

Once an invitation to apply is received from the Expression of Interest, skilled visa applications are lodged via the ImmiAccount system of the Australian government

The application fee is currently AU$3,600 for the main applicant, AU$1,800 for spouse applicant, AU$900 for each dependent child.



I’m an Accountant wanting to migrate to Australia

Migrate to Australia as an Accountant

Want to migrate to Australia?

Overseas qualified accountants can rest easy as Australia’s skilled migration system still caters for them to migrate to Australia.

What are your qualifications and why is it important to talk about them.

The skilled migration visas on offer by Australia are all about qualifications.  Australia wants a potential skilled migrant to have at least one of the following, a diploma, a bachelor degree, a master’s degree, a PhD or a formal trade apprenticeships.

If you don’t have a formal qualification your options to migration to Australia can be very limited.  In the past, there used to be more flexibility with allowing migrants to rely on their work experience in place of formal qualifications but those times are over.

When you are looking at your Australian visa options, you might focus on your job title, particularly when you are looking at the Skilled Occupations List (SOL) to see if your job is on there. When you do find your job on the SOL be sure to check what is the relevant assessing body.  Look at their website to check what their requirements are in terms of formal qualifications.

David’s case

David is an Irish-qualified taxation accountant who wants to migrate to Australia with his family.  He is 36, happily married with 2 young lovely children.  The family have their heart set on moving to Melbourne to join David’s brother and sister who emigrated to Australia a few years ago.

David has a business degree from the University College Dublin and he is a member of Chartered Accountants Ireland.

Before I met David, he spent hours after work researching the skilled migration visa on the internet that his siblings were advising him to look into as they were keen for him to join them.

Unfortunately, David’s family could only really provide encouragement.  Neither sibling had any experience in this skilled migration visa category.  David’s sister went to Australia on a Working Holiday visa, 2 years later having fallen for an Aussie she stayed on thanks to a partner migration visa.  David’s brother, also went on a Working Holiday visa, was then sponsored on a 457 work visa by an Australian employer who then went on to sponsor him for an Employer nominated scheme visa for permanent residency.

5 Tips for David

  1. Check out the SOL – confirm that Taxation Accountant is 12th occupation listed on the SOL, its ANZSCO code 221113 and the relevant assessing bodies are the Chartered Accountants of Australia (CA), and Institute of Public Accountants (IPA).
  2. Visit the CA website and take note that they have 2 pathways for getting a  migration skill assessment.  Pathway 1 you have an Australian or overseas tertiary qualification and pathway 2 you have a member of a professional accounting body recognised by the CA.
  3. David need only choose one of the two pathways.  Pathway 2 should be the winner.  Why?  It’s straight forward.  David verifies his membership by way of a letter of good standing from the Chartered Accountants of Ireland which is recognised by the CA, provides his transcript of professional exam results and certificate of membership.
  4. Organise to sit one of the following English tests and provide a proficient result as part of skill assessment to the CA.

In David’s case he was in the lucky situation of having a degree and a professional membership and the assessing body could assess either qualification.

Sope’s case to migrate to Australia as a Nigerian accountant

Sope is a Nigerian qualified general accountant.  Like David he wants to migrate to Australia with his family.  He has a degree in commerce and is also a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountant Nigeria.  For Sope, he can go through steps 1 and 2 like David.  He will find his occupation is listed 10th on the SOl and its ANZSCO code 221111.

The CA migration skill assessment requirements apply to Sope but for one difference.  The ICAN is not recognised by the CA.  He must look closer at the CA requirements to see that it does not mean he excluded from applying to them for a migration skill assessment.  The CA will assess applicants who are members of other accounting members.

In Sope’s case they would likely review his degree in commerce closely as well as his professional membership.  He would also need to provide a proficient English test result.  The English test requirement is a mandatory requirement for all applicant regardless of where they are from.

Migrate to Australia as an Accountant

I only have a degree can I still migrate to Australia?

What if you are an accountant that is not a member of a professional accounting body like David or Sope.

Again complete steps 1 and 2 listed above.  On the CA migration skill assessment you will choose Pathway 1.

The CA will be reviewing your degree and more specifically your transcript of subjects you studies as part of your degree.  For each accounting occupation, there are 12 core accounting subjects.

For an applicant to have their degree positively assessed as the accountant occupation they have nominate, the CA must be satisfied they have studied a minimum of 9 out of the 12 core subjects.

The CA will ask for the course syllabus/handbook from the year you studied be provided.  If you don’t have it, they will ask that you request the university or college you attended email it to them directly.  Yes, directly to them, not to you first and then you’ll send it on.

Migrate to Australia as an Accountant

The CA website is user friendly and I have always found their migration assessment unit great to deal with.

You can easily download an application form.  The current skill assessment application fee ranges depending on what you require.   You complete the payment section by selecting one of the options and provide your card details.

Once you have prepared all your documents, you must ensure that any copies are certified copies of the original document.  The only original document that should be provided is the letter of good standing is you are a member of a professional accounting body.

Migration to Australia as an Account

The process of lodging your skill assessment application and supporting documents is via the CA email provided on its website.

Good luck!


Too old to emigrate to Australia

What’s too old to emigrate anyway?

What is the cut of age for a visa to emigrate to Australia?

This is a common question that comes from people looking for information and advice on emigrating to Australia.

The short answer is”it depends”.

Firstly, what visa are you thinking about applying for. If its one of the skilled migration visas like the subclass 189 or 190, which are for Australian permanent residency than 50 is the age limit. Once you get to your 50th birthday these visa categories are off the table.

Now if you are lucky enough to still be in your twenties and along with your Irish passport (I’m stating Irish, but there are a host of other countries which are eligible) , there is the working holiday visa option. Cut off age for this is 30. Sometimes the age limit of 30 for the Australian working holiday visa is confused as being the age limit for skilled migration visas which is 50. If the Australian government pursued that approach no one in their 30s or beyond would have any chance of emigrating to Australia so fortunately the age limit is what it is.

Of course if you don’t want to emigrate but just want to visit well then the tourist visa is ageless. You could be 20 or 80 years of age it doesn’t matter, Australia doesn’t discriminate on the age of potential tourists who want to make a visit the great land Down Under.

Finally, the Australian work visas, the age limit is 50 but there are exceptions to the age limit unlike in the skilled migration visa classes where there is no negotiation. If you are a highly skilled person who is being sponsored over to Australia on an Australian work visa like the subclass 457 temporary work visa for example, than so long as you are under the age of 50 you will be fine satisfying the age requirement. If you are over 50 but under 55 than there is still a possibility you will be okay but it will depend on a number of factors including the type of job you are being sponsored to perform and how much money you are being paid.

Some tips

Here are few pointers to help you if you are over the 40 mark but under 50 and wondering if there is any hope of apply for a permanent visa.

  1. Your occupation is key to unlocking the possibility of applying. Unless you have an occupation that is degree qualified and in high demand, your options will be very limited to non-existent.
  2. Being over 40 and having an occupation in high demand, the next question you have to ask yourself is, can I be sponsored by a state government. For example recently, I had a senior medical doctor who was turning 48 inquire about his eligibility. I advised him to look at South Australia which is currently sponsor a range of health professionals to its state. Of course he will have the added difficulty of jumping through the regulatory requirements of the Australian Medical Board to gain initial registration but the option is still alive while he is under the age limit of 50.
  3. Be prepared to take an English language proficiency even if you think you speak English real good:). Tests such a the International English Language Testing System, also known by its acronym IELTS and the PTE Academic test enable a person to prove they have superior English language ability which helps the overall eligibility.

So those 3 pointers sound helpful enough but how do they translate into a confirmation of eligibility. For that we have to look back to the general migration points test, which establishes that an applicant must have as a minimum 60 points to apply for a skilled migration visa.

The Doctor and his pass mark

So if our good doctor wants to apply, we should break down his pass mark, based on the assumption that the Australian Medical Board approves him to practice and the good people of the South Australian migration also sponsor him.

Here is his pass mark calculation as I see it:

Age – Nil

Degree – 15

work experience – 15

Superior English – 20

State sponsorship – 10

Total: 60

Based on the above pass mark, the doctor is eligible to apply for Skilled migration (regional sponsored ) visa subclass 489.

On this visa he must live and work in Adelaide or any other part of South Australia for at least 2 years, after this he can be sponsored on to a permanent residence visa.

Here is a quick video I made about Age Limits in relation to the skilled migration points test for Australia.

Enjoy! x

How I’m going to save the Australian economy.



So the sun was finally shining here in Ireland up until a few days ago and now we’ve reverted to the usual cold and wet conditions we are all to familiar with and I’m totally over it.

I am starting to think waiting for the summer in Ireland is a bit like waiting for the Australian government to lighten up about its immigration programme.

I had been working on this article for a few weeks but I came across an article today which spurred me and I know the title of this article is a big statement but I have a few good ideas on how to save the Australian economy that I wanted to share.

The article  I read was talking about a proposal that would overhaul the current migration visas for Australia.  The gist of it being “Immigration is not intended to help poor people”.  Essentially migrants would be selected by the Australian government on how much they could pay and not their skills or even family connections to Australia.

The new proposal comes out of the the Productivity Commission, the Australian government’s independent advisory body reviewing the main criteria that migrants are assessed against.  This review was requested by Treasurer, Joe Hockey.  Yes the Treasurer asked for the review and the finding is that they should focus on rich migrants.  Go figure.  I’ll leave you to draw your own conclusions.

The mining boom bust in 2012 has left a big hole in the Australian national purse

Since the mining boom bust in 2012 the effect has left a big hole in the Australian national purse perhaps that is why Mr Hockey might be feeling a bit of pressure in his current role.

China doesn’t want all that iron ore anymore.  What iron ore it did acquire in stupendous amounts has resulted in wasteful construction.  An example of this would the disturbing existence of “ghost cities”.  Essentially cities built for 1 million people but only housing say 20,000 people.  Cities like Ordos, one of these such cities located in Inner Mongolia.  Hmm Ordos it doesn’t sound very Chinese, more like one of those crazy clubs in Malaga we read about where Irish youngsters going to work off some of their crazy sexual energy.

With rising unemployment and lower than expected revenues from taxes, Australia is struggling to retain its flag as the beacon economy which managed to avoid going into recession during the global financial crisis.  The treasurer must be looking for extra funds for the national purse and a good way to get this income is to gear the migration policy to focus on the goal of moneyed migrants.

At this stage is just a proposal so rather than foucs on on the negative, here are my 5 tips to help the Australian economy improve without becoming a crazy money hungry branch of the government machinery and mix in a bit of social responsibility as well:-

1. Make it easier

Make it easier for professionally and trade educated migrants to get in and let more of them in.  If someone can put themselves through the process of applying, paying large application fees then moving themselves and their families across the world to a new country and life to boot, naturally they are either crazy or brilliant.  Let’s go with the latter.  Migrants are naturally an enterprising, go getting type of a group set so make it easier for them, it has to be better for the economy.  If each migrant comes with an average of AU$20,000 to settle that’s also a monetary infusion in to the economy.

2. Favour families

Let’s face it this bust will eventually pass and another boom cycle will begin.  So have a bit more foresight.  An aging population and the economic challenges that accompanying this growing trend is something that needs to be addressed now.  Migration could be the answer.  Change migration policy to favour families.   Children are the key to the future.  On that note get rid of visa application fees for children altogether.  Yes its important what mum and dad have been up to so they need to be the qualifying applicants but its the children that Australia accept who are coming with mum and dad that could be one of the keys to solving the social and economic challenges Australia is going to be facing in the not so distant future when this global trend is in full swing.  The kids are migration “gold” for flip’s sake.  Let the Kids in Australia! That’s my mantra, say it with me now!

3.  Give asylum seekers a break

Give the poor asylum seeker/refugee a break visa wise.  Seriously, how much effort translated into dollars goes into dealing with this issue.  From detention centres to work time of politicians, social commentators, media, really how much energy is going into this.

The reality is only about 2,000 get these types of visas get given out anyway.  Detention centres are repugnant and probably very costly.  The whole entire framework that goes toward keeping people in what is essentially a jail for “processing” is horrible.

4.  Millenial input

Ask young Australians what migration policy they want for their country since these policies will also affect their futures. The Einstellung effect is a term I came across in wonderful Coursera course I recently completed called Learning how to learn.  It is the negative effect of previous experience when solving new problems.  That’s why scientific break through for example have occurred when the old scientists have died off.  Its a fresh way of looking at problems that can resolve them.  I think you see Einstellung effect in play with the Australian government’s approach to how to create a better migration programme.

5.  Reduced fees

Stop putting up the application fees FFS!  Yes I swore, well actually is swearing in abbreviation really swearing?  Visa application fees have increased over 40% in the time I’ve been working in immigration.  When I was working in migration in Brisbane back in 2004, I recall the main visa application fee was AU$1920.  Guess what it is today AU$3,520!  Who wishes they could buy shares in the Department of Immigration and Citizenship.  Of course the government will give all kinds of reasons that warrant the price hike and maybe some of that money has really helped the Australian economy and people but the cynical part of me just thinks that all government bodies are full of over paid senior public servants not doing much to be efficient and forward thinking and that the political climate which public servants are very susceptible to for their job security usually influences the types of policy that gets made.  Find some other way to raise revenue from migrants.

This is my opinion as it’s my blog.  Feel free to leave your own suggestions for the Australian government on how to improve the economy without becoming so greedy.



What type of evidence do you need to apply for an Australian Partner visa

Here is a video I made a while back about the types of evidence you should include in your Australian partner visa application.

Don’t mind the funny face, the joy of video editing!

What type of evidence should you include in your Australia visa application?

This is a common question for anyone intending to apply for an Australian partner visa. This visa is a very popular visa among all those loved-up couples living overseas or in Australia. Why is that? Well, eventually lots of couples want to return to Australia or continue to live together in Australia on a permanent basis. Where one person is an Australian citizen or permanent resident then they can sponsor their other half (who is not Australian) to join them permanently in Australia.

My suggestions on what type of evidence you need for your Australian partner visa are pretty straight forward but it’s good sometimes to hear them set out simply.

Types of evidence to provide

Major evidence types you could include in an Australian partner visa application are “official” documents that show you are living together such as:

  • a joint lease agreement
  • rental receipts
  • letter from the landlord to confirm your living situation
  • if you own your house, a sale of contract or mortgage statement

An Australian partner visa based on a de facto spousal relationship means that you must prove you have been in a de facto spousal relationship for at least 12 months before making your application.  That means the evidence you arrange for the Australian partner visa application should cover the 12 month period. This means if you fall short of this period of time with your evidence, you need to be cautious because this means you will not meet the requirement and your Australian partner visa application is likely to be refused.

Other types of evidence to provide

Other evidence you can provide in your Australian partner visa application can include:

  • joint bank statements
  • joint utility bills, and
  • other correspondence that shows you and your partner share the same address.

Immigration aren’t really interested in the warm and fuzzy evidence like photos and cards, you can include them but don’t go over the top.  I use the rule of “six” when it comes to this.  Only include 6 items of the love stuff and not more. With photos be sure to include a short description of who is the photo, what was the date it was taken, and where is the setting of the photo.

This is would be an example of a photo description to help the case officer appreciate the image and what it relates: Say the applicant is Kate and her Australian partner is David. The short description would read “Kate and David with Kate’s parents Miriam and Joe at a friend’s wedding reception at Portmarnock Links Hotel, 25 April 2018”.

Well, I hope you enjoy and find the video useful.  If you did, please leave a comment and let me know and please share the video as well.

Book a consultation with Mege 


The Age limit and Australian visas

I’m 50, am I past the age limit for an Australian visa ?

Am I past the age limit to apply? This is the type of question, I’m hearing more and more these days. It’s representative of a growing trend of people in their 40s and 50s asking about their Australian visa options.

I’m intrigued by this growing trend as most people seem very willing to leave established lives and careers behind and make the move to Australia. On this FAQ Friday video I delve into a question sent into me by a visitor to my site, Derek from South Africa who is interested in moving to Australia at the age of 53 to be closer his son who already lives there.

Unfortunately for Derek, regarding the skilled migration visa for Australia, the boat has already sailed. The age limit is actually 50. Ofcourse that doesn’t mean he can look for work visa sponsorship opportunities, particularly because he is a senior chartered accountant and holds professional accountancy qualifications for Australia and New Zealand. Then there are always the long stay tourist visas for 6 or 12 months which are great for parents who have children living in Australia and would like to spend a decent time in the country rather than a whirlwind trip.

Finally, a word of advice to anyone out there who is in their 40s and been toying with the idea of getting a visa for Australia that would permit a permanent stay. Its never too late to get some professional help to know what your visa options are before the time actually runs.

I would love to hear from you if you are someone who got into Australia in the nick of time, please post a comment below and share your story. I’ve done a few visa applications in my time where it really came down to the eleventh hour for a client who was on the brink of turning a certain age and losing their chance to apply, these applications were stressful I won’t lie but are some of my best achievements when a visa approval.

Thank you as always for watching and reading. Please add your perspective as well in the comments which are always welcome.




Visa for Australia Age limit

The decision to emigrate to Australia

3 tips to making the right decision to migrate to Australia

Countless hours spent on google searches have been done on this question here in Ireland.  Since the recession hit Ireland back in 2007 Irish people continue to move between Ireland and Australia on a frequent basis.

The topic of immigration, emigration, Australian visas galore, the Irish leave for better jobs, career prospects, better life in general so on and so forth was something that appears in the news on a weekly basis after the financial crisis hit.  The tale has been told to death and the media hype about the Irish leaving in droves for Australia is well and truly over but quietly in the background, the Irish are still moving to Australia. Maybe not in the thousands like before but there are still significant numbers leaving. For a lot of people, the main motivating factor is better job prospects and career progression.  In particular, female professionals who are accountants, teachers, social workers and nurses in the mid 20s to late 30s, a lot have concerns about their professional future in Ireland if they were to stay.  Some despite being highly qualified with bachelor and masters degree qualifications can’t secure permanent roles for themselves.

Ask yourself the following questions when you are considering making the move to Australia.

  • Tip 1- How’s your work situation right now? – There is a common assumption that migrants are people who don’t have jobs or about to be let go etc but in fact most migrants are people who are steady long term employment.  Being in employment means that they are earning an income and increasing their work experience whilst they wait for the visa application to be processed.  This is the best position to be in.  For anyone who is unemployed and looking to emigrate, unfortunately the fact is that they’ve left it too late.  Most permanent residency visas for Australia like the skilled migration visa for example can take 6 months to acquire and costs for a single applicant AU$3,520, more if there are family members included.
  • Tip 2 – What’s will emigrating mean for your finances? – Emigrating to Australia is expensive, there’s no other way to put it. A family of 4 will cost AU$7,060 in visa application fees payable to the Australian government.  Very nice for the Australian government’s coffers not so great for your own finances.  For most single applicants without the spouse and kids, all up emigrating can cost in the vicinity of €5,000 as an approximate figure if you factor in relevant application fees, medical checks, IELTS test and migration agent fees if you choose to engage one.
  •  Tip 3 – How are your relationships with your loved ones? – Deciding to emigrate to Australia will have a big impact on your family and close friends.  If you know you are going move forward with an Australian visa application process best to address any family issues or matters that might need your attention now.  Once a visa comes through and there is a deadline to head over to Australia to activate visas or start a new job, family relationships can suffer.  Its difficult to address, manage or spend time with your loved ones when you are thousands of miles away in Australia.  For most migrants, a trip home to Ireland to visit family and friends may not occur for at least 24 months.

I want to go back to Australia!

 Sydney Harbour Bridge


In the last month or so I’ve received a number of emails from people who have been living and working in Australia and who have recently returned to Australia after their first or most times second working holiday visas have come to an end.

The emails tend to carry the same message, I loved living in Australia, I tried to get sponsored to stay or I came home because of family illness’ and now I want to go back.  Please help!

Sydney, Perth and Melbourne tend to be the cities where most people spent their time living and working with a bit of travelling chucked in as well and the main question is am I eligible to migrate back.

I would love to say “yes” to everyone that asks me that question but sometimes its not straight forward.  I love it when I have a client who is meets all the criteria for a skilled independent visa subclass 189.  They have an occupation on the SOL, they are between the age of 25 – 39, and can get a superior IELTS test score.  This is a brilliant situation because there’s no need for state sponsorship.

Recently on 14 July, NSW reopened its state sponsorship application system.  It had updated to an online system and I guess no matter how many millions they through into their IT system, it was carnage.  Read this little excerpt from Migration Alliance a representative body for migration agents to the NSW trade and investment migration policy section (RMA is abbreviation for “Registered Migration Agents”:

RMAs are not satisfied with the response provided by NSW Government.

Is the NSW Government  (Skilled) going to fix the botched application process that cost so many applicants the opportunity to apply?  By this I refer to the unannounced application window, huge technical problems resulting in many people getting half way through applications and then being blown out of the system by crashing servers, etc and then having no opportunity to start their failed application again, etc etc.

Anyone wanting to stay on or return to Sydney and needing NSW state sponsorship for their skilled migration visa application (namely the State sponsored skilled migration visa subclass 190) its looking like it will be a bit of a lottery to get through the NSW online application system successfully.

So some key points about getting back to Australia

    • There’s no turning back the clock – if you are currently in Australia, trying to sort out a visa for yourself to keep you there.  I have helped clients who were already in Australia on working holiday visas or sometimes the subclass 457 work visa, lodge a skilled migration visa application.  Most then went on to a bridging visa which kept them working in Australia while they waited for a decision on their permanent residency.  Once you get back to Ireland, things become more challenging.  Emotionally, it takes a toll, so many are desperate to return the long distance between Ireland to Australia starts making it feel impossible.  One thing I know is immigration is stressful on a good day so if you start feeling negative that your goal to get back is never going to pan out then it may just become a reality.

    • If you have to return to Ireland, like I mentioned earlier sometimes family illness or sometimes a death of a parent or sibling bring people back.  Of course its important to be with family in sad times.  When you are ready to return to Australia, get yourself a proper visa assessment of eligibility.  Don’t wonder about your visa options.  This will not only help you but also give your family peace of mind.  From my own point of view being an Australian citizen and passport holder, my Irish extended family do wonder if one day my husband and I are going to return to Australia after 8 years in Ireland.  We both have Australian passports so we could leave tomorrow if we wanted but thank goodness I don’t have to tell them we are working on getting visas to go and it may or may not work out depending on the Australian government.  This is the opposite for many of clients who have to and sometimes this can be an emotional roller coaster ride for their extended families.  If you can confidently tell family and friends that you’ve got a good chance of successfully obtaining the visa you’ve applied for and give them a general time line to your intended departure this can lessen general stress and anxiety that relatives feel when loved ones tell them to they are moving half way across the world to Australia.

    • Know your nomination occupation well – Look at the SOL and CSOL and find your occupation and then explore the ins and outs of getting a positive skill assessment from the relevant assessing body.  For example accountants, I would normally put a skill assessment application through the Institute of Chartered Accountants Australia.  You have to have a degree in accounting or be a professional member of an accounting body like the ACCA.

    • Consider taking the IELTS test as the first thing you do.  A superior IELTS test score could be the difference between applying for a skilled independent visa subclass 189 or a state sponsored skilled migration visa subclass 190.  The former being the best option as there is no need for sponsorship of any kind and you get to live and work anywhere in Australia you like.  I’ve had one client take the test 6 times, yes 6! She is an Irish nurse currently in Sydney.  She wants to apply for the skilled independent visa but she’s been unlucky with near perfect superior result just dropping half a mark for reading.  For others its been a smoother ride, with superior results obtained in the first attempt which of course is ideal.

    • Learn about the Expression of Interest (EOI)- the Skillselect system is creation of the Australian government from 2012/2013.  The EOI which is submitted to the Skillselect system made way for an invitation based system of migration applications.  Gone are the days when you discovered you were eligible to apply, got your pre-application stages done and then simply lodged a visa application.  Now you have to complete the pre-application stages, submit and EOI then wait to be invited to apply.  Each calendar month there are 2 rounds of invitations on the second and fourth Monday of the month.  This is for applicants who have submitted an EOI selecting the skilled independent visa category.  For state sponsored migration visa, after you have submitted and EOI, applied for your state sponsorship and been approved, the state government will inform the Australian government and an invitation will be generated immediately.

Hope this information helps anyone thinking of returning to Australia.  If there is something specific you want to know, pop a message through via the contact form.

All the best!

Sponsorship Limitations on the Partner visa


Young couple in love

This Friday morning I received a message via the website from a woman based here in Ireland wanting to know what visa options there might be for her partner.  She recently had a baby in Ireland and has held Australian permanent residency since 2010.  She wants to return to Australia but can’t sponsor her partner right now because her own permanent residency was acquired by way of a Partner visa so 5 years has to pass before she will be able to be sponsor.  Unfortunately, the email address she stated in her message didn’t work so my email advice just bounced a few minutes ago so I thought why not put the information into an online article for anyone else who might be in a similar situation in and I would try her contact number later to see if I could reach her to give her the advice verbally.

She didn’t provide any details of her partner other than they had considered a working holiday visa for him as he meets the age limit but were not sure if he would get one because they have a child.

Normally I would recommend she wait until the 5 year anniversary of when she lodged her own Partner visa application passes and then proceed with sponsoring a Partner visa application for her current partner as it would be the path of least resistance and cost, however in this case, hypothetically she could sponsor her child for a Child visa, making them both Australian permanent residents.  Then her partner could apply for a working holiday visa to accompany them both over to Australia without restriction as the child was not being left overseas.  They would then be living in Australia together which is the main aim and then down the track lodge a Partner visa application for him when the 5 year anniversary passes.

Happy Friday everyone!


Solicitors moving to Australia

 Gavel  and Flag of Australia

  Recently, I received a question from an Irish solicitor called Stephen asking about how Irish solicitor can emigrate to Australia. In the past, I’ve assisted a number of number of overseas qualified solicitors apply for skilled migration visas to facilitate a move to Australia. The main factor to be aware of if you are an overseas qualified solicitor is that eligibility to apply for a skilled migration visa as a solicitor is based you having gained admission to practise in Australia. The process involves:

  • applying to the Legal Profession Admissions Boardto to have your academic qualifications in particular your bachelor degree assessed for admission to practice in Australia. Most Irish/UK solicitors then have 1 or 2 subjects they need to take i.e Australian constitutional law and Professional responsibility. These can be taken long distance with Australian universities, like the University of New England based in Armidale, NSW. It will probably take about 6 months and each subject costs about AU$2,000 but you need to check directly with the university for their exact figures. Once you have taken the exams and passed you will be eligible to apply for admission to practice in Australia. You will need to make the application for admission, attend your admission ceremony in Australia to obtain your Certificate of Admission before you can then start the skilled migration visa application process.
  • Other factors to consider are taking the IELTS test and aiming to gain a superior result which is a score of 8 in each of the four bands of reading, writing. listening and speaking.
  • If you are aged between 25 – 39 hold and Australian certificate of admission to practice, have a superior IELTS score as well as a bachelor of laws degree you should have a sufficient pass mark to apply for a skilled independent visa sub class 189.  This is general information, if you are an overseas qualified solicitor and seriously considering this process, do the right thing by yourself and get a proper assessment of your eligibility and confirmation of your pass mark.
  • The current passmark for the skilled independent visa subclass 189 is 60 points. Getting an assessment of your visa eligibility to apply (subject to being admitted to practice in Australia) before you launch into the process of getting admitted to practice in Australia will ensure you know that you meet the other visa requirements as well.

Good luck!