Migration Agent

Hooray!!! My profession is on the occupation list for skilled migration! Or is it?

Let’s begin this blog with a real conversation I have had many times with clients regarding the occupations list:

Client: “I’ve done my research and my profession is on the occupations list. Hooray!! I want to apply for my PR now.
When can we begin?”

Me: “That’s great – congratulations!! Which list are you on? The SOL, CSOL, RSMSOL or State Occupations in Demand?”

Client: “What do you mean? My job is on ‘the list’. Are you telling me there is more than one?”

Me: “Yes, that’s right. There is more than one list as you can see.”

Client: “Oh really, I didn’t know that!”

Me: “It’s important to know – your visa application depends on it! You might not even be eligible as you originally thought.”

A list of lists

What many visa applicants do not realise is that there are a number of occupation lists they need to be aware of when considering their skilled PR options. Each list is different and directly affects which visa may be applied for. Some occupations are only on one list, others may be on all. These are the skilled occupations lists:

Skilled Occupations List (SOL)

This is everyone’s favourite because it relates to the Skilled Independent (subclass 189) visa. Your occupation must be on this list to be eligible. Here is the latest SOL list: https://www.comlaw.gov.au/Details/F2015L01059 (refer Schedule 1).

Consolidated Skilled Occupations List (CSOL)

You need to be on this list to apply for the Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 457) or the permanent version being the Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) (subclass 186) visa. Here is the CSOL list: https://www.comlaw.gov.au/Details/F2015L01059 (refer Schedule 2).

Regional Sponsored Migration Skilled Occupations List (RSMSOL)

Here we are talking about the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (subclass 187) visa. This occupations list is the same as the CSOL except that your occupation must be at skill level 1,2or 3.

State Occupations in Demand List

Your profession needs to be on this list for you to be eligible for the Skilled (Nominated) (subclass 190) visa. These lists differ from every state and territory in Australia.

Conclusion

Pay very close attention to which list and which visa category your job falls under. It may mean the difference being eligible or in eligible for a particular visa. Knowledge of these lists may also open doors for other visa subclasses you may not have been aware of.

Migration AgentHooray!!! My profession is on the occupation list for skilled migration! Or is it?
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Immigration Detention. What to do if You Have Been Detained.

Immigration Detention. What is it? Why people end up there? How to get out.

What is Immigration Detention?

Immigration detention is a place of detention for people who do not hold a visa to be in Australia. If you are detained by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection, you will likely end up in an onshore Immigration Detention Centre (IDC). Once this occurs you will no longer be free to leave the detention centre and your communication with the outside world will be limited.

Your documents and possessions will also be held by the authorities and you will have limited access to these until your release or removal from Australia.

At time of writing, there are approximately 1,700 people in Immigration Detention Centres (IDC’s) on the Australian mainland and another 300 people are subject to alternative immigration detention arrangements. There is currently 1,600 detainees in Regional Processing Centres on Nauru Island and Papua New Guinea.*

Why do people end up in Immigration Detention?

Everyone in immigration detention is an ‘Unlawful Non-Citizen’ (‘UNC’). This means that they do not hold an Australian visa or the right to live in Australia (Citizenship or Permanent Residency). The reason why people become UNC’s and end up in detention can vary. Typically it’s because:

– they arrived here without a visa (for example by boat)
– they overstayed their Australia visa (stayed too long and did not return home after the visa expiry)
– their visa was cancelled by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection for breach of visa conditions (i.e.: they had a visa then lost it – see blog on visa cancellation) LINK TO CANCELLATION BLOG

What happens after you are placed into Immigration Detention?

Typically, the Department of Immigration and Border Protection will seek to have the UNC deported or removed from Australia. This usually results in return to their home country. However, this may not always be possible as their travel documents (Passport) may not be in order or the home country may not facilitate their return. Where the immigration breach is not considered too serious (e.g. a visa overstayer who was UNC for a short period of time) and the is not deemed a danger to the community (criminal history in Australia) assuming they agree to make departure arrangements, it is likely that they may be eligible to apply for and be granted a bridging visa (short term visa to depart voluntarily). Once a Bridging Visa has been granted the person will then be released into the community.

In most cases, special Immigration Detention arrangements are made for families and children in detention. The Government seeks to avoid (where possible) children being detained. In this circumstance community detention may be more appropriate.

How do you get out of Immigration Detention?

The only way to be released from Immigration Detention is through a visa grant or removal from Australia (this is also known as deportation).

Typically the visas which a UNC may be eligible for are bridging visas E or F but most commonly a Bridging Visa E (BVE) (subclass 050). A BVE is usually granted on the basis of departure arrangements, lodging another substantive visa or seeking judicial review of a decision.

UNC’s have limited visa rights once in detention, and strict timeframes apply for lodging a substantive visa application (48 hours) with apossible extension in writing.

As a UNC in detention you may only apply for a limited number of substantive visas such as humanitarian, protection family and partner visas. This is also depend upon the information and timeframes provided in the Very Important Notice (VIN) which will be provided to you at the time of detention.

What to do if you are in Immigration Detention?

If you are in detention, seek professional HELP IMMEDIATELY.

Your appeal and visa rights are limited and timeframes are critical to your success. Your case is complex and being in detention is a stressful, uncertain and confusing environment. A professional and reputable Migration Agent or Immigration Lawyer will walk you through the process and try to reduce your concern and anxiety.

Fortunately, UNC’s have access to the internet and mobile phones in the detention centre, this will provide you the ability to contact a reputable Migration Agent or Immigration Lawyer for HELP.

Where a UNC has a visa application being considered, they typically cannot be removed from Australia, however being in Detention will likely speed up the visa decision process, and as a result this is not a viable or ongoing solution to avoid removal in the longer term.

*Source: http://www.border.gov.au/ReportsandPublications/Documents/statistics/immigrationdetention-statistics-31-July-2015.pdf#search=immigration%20detention%20statistics%20july%202015

Migration AgentImmigration Detention. What to do if You Have Been Detained.
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Changes to the Working Holiday Maker Program

Changes to the Working Holiday Maker Program:

The Australian Working Holiday Maker (WHM) visa has been a popular mainstay for young visitors aged between 18 -30 from eligible overseas countries. This visa provides a great opportunity for interested young people to come to Australia for a working holiday while experience our wonderful country and culture. This visa provides the opportunity for young people to develop into their adult life while experiencing a foreign country.

Why Choose a Working Holiday Maker Visa:

  • The opportunity to work and travel in Australia

  • Develop new skills and friendships abroad

  • Embrace and learn a new culture

  • Visit a diverse and magnificent country

The working holiday maker has a condition that allows eligible applicants to extend their stay in Australia by a further 1 year, assuming that the applicant can meet the minimum 88 days work condition.The 88 day work requirement means you must do a total of 88 days in 365 in a regional area working.

In most circumstance people obtain a second WHM legitimately by completing the required work but in a few exceptional cases people have exploited the system to obtain another visa.

As a result on 1 September 2015, the Australian Government implemented a new requirement for the WHM visa program, which requires applicants to submit electronic (uploaded) or hardcopy (paper) payslips for claimed regional work undertaken. This is a minimum requirement for the grant of the second working holiday maker visa.

This application of evidence requirements is consistent with the Fair Work Act 2009 – which states that all employers must provide employees with payslips. Payslips must verify that the pay was received in line with the award wage and that the specified work was undertaken. Visa applicants can find the Australian rates of pay at the Fair Work website – www.fairwork.gov.au

Volunteer or cash in hand work will no longer be accepted as part of the 88 days unless it was commenced prior to 31 August 2015. Any volunteer work commenced after this period cannot be claimed against the 88 day working requirement.

What to do?

  • If you are unsure of whether you will be affected by these changes you can:

  • Speak with the Department of Immigration and Border Protection

  • Consult a reputable Immigration Lawyer

  • Submit the Form 1263 – Working Holiday Visa, Employment Verification (Please note this is not a visa application)

Ask your employer for payslips, this will also ensure that you are being paid the award wage ($17.29 unless under an award, enterprise or registered agreement). If you are unsure as to what your requirements are for award wages, please visit http://calculate.fairwork.gov.au/findyouraward

Migration AgentChanges to the Working Holiday Maker Program
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How to choose a Immigration Lawyer or Migration Agent

TIPS for Choosing the right Immigration Lawyer or Migration Agent.

Applying for an Australian visa can be daunting because there are so many different visa types. Complex legislation such as the Migration Act 1958 (the Act) can be hard to understand. The visa choice and application process can become overwhelming to the point of becoming almost crippling. As a professional Immigration Lawyer, I regularly see clients who have become unlawful non-citizens (UNC’s) or are required to depart Australia as a result of poor visa application choice or lack of visa application knowledge. When speaking with these clients, they often tell me that they were unsure as to what their options were, or where to seek help.

When considering making a visa application both offshore and onshore within Australia, it is critically important to consider you goals and desired outcome.

Are you seeking to enter and remain in Australia permanently (ie: permanent residence) or are you simply wanting to take the opportunity to travel, work or study abroad? The answer to these questions will form the basis of your visa application.

Why use an Agent?

An Australian accredited Immigration Lawyer or Migration Agent will be able to advise you in a much more detailed way as to what the benefits and/or disadvantages for each visa subclass are.

The benefits of using an agent are:

  • they will explain what visa options are available to you;

  • they will prepare all visa documentation on your behalf;

  • they will lodge a well prepared and professional application; and

  • Will liaise with the Department of Immigration and Border Protection on your behalf.

Agents CAN NOT:

  • guarantee your visa application will be successful;

  • help you get a visa you are not entitled to or eligible for;

  • assist in obtaining or guarantee faster visa processing;

  • act unethically or contribute to migration fraud; and

  • lodge fraudulent or false documentation on your behalf.

What if I change my mind and want to stay in Australia?

Often people change their mind once they arrive in Australia and realise they want to stay here for longer or permanently.  Reason for this might include:

  • meeting that special person;

  • a job offer;

  • wanting to travel a bit more; or

  • commencing study in Australia.

These circumstances are when an Immigration Lawyer or Agent can be of greatest assistance to you. Immigration Lawyers and Agents are experts in their field and will advise you what is required to meet the requirements for grant of a visa.

Why use a registered agent?

People are often turned off using a Migration Agent or Lawyer on that basis of cost, negative experiences or bad publicity of unscrupulous agents.

Applying for a visa is an investment in your future, therefore it is important to give yourself every opportunity for success.

A reputable agent or Immigration Lawyer will always provide you with a contract for service, this document will outline the work required and expected charges.

This document should also include expected visa application charges, which can range from free to several thousand dollars.

The benefits of using a registered agent are:

  • people who have sufficient knowledge of the legislation and migration law procedures;

  • people of high integrity;

  • fit and proper to provide migration assistance or advice;

  • required to abide by a strict code of conduct; and

  • required to act with integrity and ethics.

How much will it cost and what can I expect?

Migration Agents and Immigration Lawyer charge different rates, and this will depend on their experience and qualifications. If your agent is also a registered lawyer then it is likely that you will pay a little more but you will be gaining the experience of a registered legal professional.

A guide to the OMARA expected fee schedule can be found at https://www.mara.gov.au/using-an-agent/working-with-your-agent/agent-fees/ (this is designed only as a guide to the expected fees and charges, and they may vary dependent upon experience).

Whichever method you and your agent or lawyer chooses you should be clearly advised of what to expect with no surprises or additional charges included. It is important to choose an Agent who is registered with the Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority (OMARA) www.mara.gov.au

  • Experience in document preparation

  • Professional expertise in correct application preparation

  • Confidence and peace of mind that the application has been prepared adequately

  • A support contact and someone to talk to

  • Regular case updates

Migration AgentHow to choose a Immigration Lawyer or Migration Agent
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Where to next after the mining boom?

Meet Dave, who is an industry expert who has over ten years experience working in horticulture. Dave works at a nursery located in Perth, Western Australia. Dave is involved in all facets of the growing process from germination to pruning and harvest. In Dave’s opinion, the future of the horticulture and science industry in Australia is ‘huge’ and will only increase with time.

“Asia is growing rapidly and as household incomes rise, their standards of living and tastes are changing. Australia is clean, disease free and produces top quality agricultural products. Our Asian neighbours simply don’t have the space to feed all their people, and as result are heavily reliant on Australia to meet their market demands. We will need more horticulturalists in the future for sure.” 

Contact Martin Udall & Associates to discuss your visa options in this exciting field.
Migration AgentWhere to next after the mining boom?
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Innovative Immigration Services

Press Release: Exciting and innovative Immigration services being delivered to Migrants in Western Australia

Martin Udall & Associates is continuing to embrace the electronic world, and provide 21st century legal services in line with technology developments.

Martin Udall & Associates is a modern Australian Immigration Law firm located in Perth, Western Australia which is dedicated to delivering 21st century legal products and services. Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Mr Martin Udall’s dream is to “expand our client’s possibilities” by providing innovative and strategic online services to migrants in Australia and abroad.

Martin Udall & Associates has been operating for a period of 10 months under a mix of traditional, brick and mortar office we are heavily investing a large portion of time developing our online platform and strategy. This approach has enabled Martin Udall & Associates to assist well in excess of 100 clients since commencement.

We are continuing to have positive legal outcomes on behalf of our clients and are yet to lose a legal case or merits review application. This is a testament to the success of the firm’s commitment to thinking outside the box and finding and solution for everyone.

In the age of digital marketing and sales, the development of a social media profile has been critical to the firm’s success. However as we have progress, we have identified that there is further scope to use an online platform to meet the growing demand for professional online services in Australia.

One limiting factor for migrants is being geographically located outside of Australia or metropolitan centres and as a result the ability to access migration and legal services is diminished.

A failure to access services enhances the likelihood that visa holders will not comply with their visa conditions and as a result incur a cost to the Australian taxpayer.

Martin Udall & Associates are committed to delivering the highest level migration and legal services to remote, regional and international communities.

“There is a gap in the traditional legal market with how legal services are delivered and as such I am confident that by expanding our online business model away from a traditional office, this will enable us to deliver new and innovative products to clients at a reduced cost. I regularly see clients who are limited by geographical and financial constraints and are therefore unable to engage the services of an Immigration Lawyer in Australia, this is something that I am committed to improving. Everyone should have access to basic legal services, especially those from non-English speaking backgrounds.”
(Martin Udall 2015).

Martin Udall & Associates are currently considering a range of new initiatives that will deliver professional legal services to remote and regional communities including:

  • free regional information sessions;

  • remote client assistance through webinars (reaching more clients online and creating networks of support) for regionally located clients; and

  • building robust relationships with rural service providers and community councils to support the delivery of community services.

We are aiming to engage with local councils, non-profit organisations and community groups to better understand how we can deliver services to these areas.

Martin Udall & Associates are an innovative, dynamic firm located in the heart of the CBD in Perth, Western Australia. Specialising in immigration law, we offer boutique, professional and experienced services. Martin Udall & Associates is a dedicated immigration law firm with a forward looking and thinking culture; embracing technology and growth. Martin Udall & Associates is committed to understanding the needs of our clients and meeting their expectations in the 21st century. This enables us to offer and specialise in a number of stand-alone services which, for decades, have traditionally been ‘bundled together.’ The result – cost and time savings for our clients.

Contact Information:

Mr Martin Udall
(Principal and Chief Executive Officer)

Martin Udall & Associates
Suite 3, 193 Guildford Road
Maylands, WA, 6051
AUSTRALIA

P: 0435 814 004
E: info@martinudall.com
www.martinudall.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/martinudallassociates
Twitter: @mu_assoc

Migration AgentInnovative Immigration Services
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