General Skilled Migration (189 & 190)

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General Skilled Migration (GSM) Points Test

The General Skilled Migration Points Test measures your eligibility to apply for different subclasses. The points test takes factors such as your age, Australian, regional and overseas education, Australian and overseas employment, and English ability, Credential community language as well as Partner points into account.  You may be eligible to obtain further points through state nomination or sponsorship.

Access to the DOHA Migration Points Test can be accessed through the following link

Selected Occupations Lists

The Selected Occupations List (SOL) and the Consolidated Sponsored Occupations List (CSOL) have been replaced by the Medium – Long-Term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) and the Short-Term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL). In order to apply for different skilled visas, your occupation must be assessed as one of the occupations on the Selected Occupations List.

The applicable lists can be found at the following link.

Applicable under the following circumstances:

  • independent points-based skilled migration applicants who are not nominated by a state or territory government agency
  • a Family Sponsored Points Tested visa
  • Temporary Graduate visa (subclass 485) – Graduate Work stream

The applicable lists can be found at the following link

Applicable under the following circumstances:

  • points-based skilled migration applicants who are nominated by a state or territory government agency under a State Migration Plan
  • Applicants under the Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS), who must have been nominated by an Australian employer to fill a position in an occupation that appears in the CSOL
  • the Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 482) if/when caveats are met
  • the Training and Research visa ( subclass 402)

Please note that for Subclass 190 (State Nominated Skilled Visa) each state has independent lists and criteria to fulfil according to specific demands, please refer to the Subclass 190 section for further information regarding this. 

It is also important to note that all occupation lists are liable to change according to Departmental and government assessment of Australia’s employment needs. These lists are updated approximately every financial year, however they can change at any stage. Please ensure that the information you are accessing is up to date.

Each occupation is defined by ANZSCO and falls within a set of parameters outlined by individual ANZSCO codes and detailed by the Australian Bureau of Statistics

Access to the ANSZCO codes and their descriptions can be found at
Australian Bureau Of Statistics and ANZSCO Codes and Occupations – DoHA

The General Skilled Migration Points Test measures your eligibility to apply for different subclasses. The points test takes factors such as your age, Australian, regional and overseas education, Australian and overseas employment, and English ability, Credential community language as well as Partner points into account.  You may be eligible to obtain further points through state nomination or sponsorship.

Access to the DOHA Migration Points Test can be accessed through the following link

Skills Assessment

All ANZSCO occupations must be assessed by an authorized skills assessing body which varies for different occupations. The relevant assessing body can be found under the Department information on the occupation.

Our office can assist you in preparing a skills assessment application in accordance with the requirements of each skills assessment body and the ANZSCO guidelines.

In order to apply for any Skilled Visa application you must hold a valid skills assessment, reflecting your education and/or employment qualifications. This can be a complicated process, without which you cannot proceed with your visa application.

Our office is equipped to lodge skills assessment applications to a range of skills assessing bodies such as Vetassess, CPA, ICAA, IPA, EA, ACS, AMSA, including many others.

English Ability

Amongst other requirements, eligibility for skilled visa applications are reliant on your English language ability, assessed by IELTS, PTE, TOEFL or OET. Different visas carry different requirements for English language ability.

Skilled Independent Visa (Subclass 189)

This visa is for points-tested skilled workers who are not sponsored by an employer or family member or nominated by a state or territory government.

It allows you to live and work in Australia as a permanent resident.

You might be eligible to apply for this visa if invited. When we sent your letter of invitation, you must also have:

  • Nominated an occupation that is on the relevant skilled occupation list
  • Obtained a suitable skills assessment for that occupation
  • Not yet turned 45 years of age
  • Achieved the score specified in your letter of invitation based on the factors in the points test
  • At least competent English but superior English score is preferred.

 

Subclass 189 Permanent Residence Pathway for New Zealand Citizens from 1 July 2017

New Zealand citizens who have been living in Australia for at least five years and shown a commitment and continuous contribution to Australia are eligible for permanent residence from 1 July 2017. The new pathway is part of the Skilled Independent Subclass 189 Visa.

Residence Requirement

The new pathway is only available to NZ citizens who started living in Australia on or before 19 February 2016. You will need to show that you were usually resident at this time

You also need to show that you have been usually resident in Australia for a continuous period of five years immediately prior to application, and have commenced that period of usual residence on or before 19 February 2016

You would need to have held a Special Category Visa (SCV Subclass 444) for the 5 years – this is the visa NZ citizens are usually granted on entry to Australia.

Income Requirement:

To be eligible for the Independent Skilled 189 (New Zealand) Stream, you must provide a copy of the Notice of Assessment (with the tax file number removed or obscured), issued by the Australian Taxation Office for each of the four most recently completed income years immediately prior to application showing that you have earned annual taxable income at least equivalent to TSMIT (Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold) for the last 5 financial years.

The TSMIT has been $53,900 since 1 July 2013, but was $51,000 from 1 July 2012 to 30 June 2013.

Table 1 – Income threshold for the past five years

Financial Year

Income threshold for Skilled Independent 189 (New Zealand) Stream

2012/13

AUD$51,000

2013/14

AUD$53,900

2014/15

AUD$53,900

2015/16

AUD$53,900

2016/17

AUD$53,900

Income Exemption

Limited exemptions to the income requirement will apply – those currently announced include:

  • Maternity, paternity or carers leave – application of this exemption is discretionary; or
  • are prevented by an Australian authority from leaving Australia to return to New Zealand because the Family Court of Australia has assigned primary care of a child to the applicant and places restrictions on the applicant from removing the child from Australia; or
  • are receiving compensation for an injury which prevents them earning at or above the income threshold, and if they returned to New Zealand their ongoing rehabilitation and/or compensation would be discontinued

 

Age Requirement:

Unlike other skilled visas, there is no age limit for the NZ stream of the 189 visa. The age limit for the subclass 189 visa are otherwise reduced to 45 from 1 July 2017

Including Family Members

Even if they are not NZ citizens, spouses and dependent children can be included in the application. If applying onshore, they must hold a substantive visa or Bridging A, B or C visa.

Health and Character Requirement

All family members included in the application must meet health and character requirements.

The waivable health criterion 4007 applies

All family members included in the application need to complete health and character.

Application Fees

Application fees are in line with current fees for the Skilled Independent Subclass 189 visa. However, only 20% of the application fee needs to be paid at lodgement. The balance of fees would only be payable once you have met all other criteria and are likely to be granted the visa.

Fees payable are below:

Applicant Type

At Lodgement

Prior to Grant

Total

Main Applicant

AUD$810

AUD$3,235

AUD$4,135

Dependants 18 or Over

AUD$405

AUD$1,615

AUD$2,020

Dependants under 18

AUD$205

AUD$810

AUD$1,015

Unlike other permanent skilled visa types, there is no English Language Charge for applicants with less than Functional English.

In Conclusion

For NZ citizens who were living in Australia on or before 19 February 2016, and have been living in Australia for the last 5 years, the new permanent residence pathway is extremely beneficial. In particular:

  • There is no English language testing, skills assessment, points test, or sponsorship by an employer
  • There is no age limit
  • The income level is reasonable – and exemptions apply for people on parenting or carer leave
  • There is a health waiver for applicants and family members with health conditions
  • The bulk of the application fee is only payable once the requirements have been assessed and the visa is about to be granted

 

New Zealand Citizens who meet the criteria should consider applying for the new pathway as it offers very favourable access to permanent resident status. 

Skilled Nominated Visa (Subclass 190)

This visa is for points-tested skilled workers who are nominated by a state or territory government agency.

It allows you to live and work in Australia as a permanent resident.

You might be eligible to apply for this visa if you were invited. When we sent you your letter of invitation, you must also have:

  • Nominated an occupation that is on the relevant skilled occupation list
  • Obtained a suitable skills assessment for that occupation
  • Not yet turned 45 years of age
  • Achieved the score specified in your letter of invitation based on the factors in the points test
  • At least competent English
  • Been nominated by an Australian state or territory government agency.

 

Different states impose different eligibility requirements, some of which may include:

  • Different levels of English language ability
  • Residence in the nominated state for a period of time prior to lodging the application
  • State in which you completed your Australian education qualifications
  • Job offers in the nominated state

Our office can help you determine your eligibility for different states. Different states also nominate different occupations, which are liable to change at any stage. Please see  Click Here for the various state occupation lists available.

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