In Australia, it is currently a mandatory requirement for immigration consultants to be enlisted with the Office of the MARA (Migration Agents Registration Authority) if providing immigration assistance and advice (read below for further definition). Accordingly, enlisted migration agencies are required to have enough comprehension of Australian migration law and will be required to be able to provide a certain level of expertise and knowledge to their customers.
Immigration assistance (under the section 276 of the Migration Act of 1958) is the defined as the use of or involvement in various migration procedures to help with visa applications or other visa matters by:
- preparing, or setting up, a visa application or other important documents
- advising on a visa application or visa matter
- preparing for procedures under the watchful eye of a court or review authority in connection to a visa application or visa matter
- representing in procedures under the watchful eye of a court or review authority in connection to a visa application or visa matter.
Immigration assistance does exclude:
- Doing administrative work to get ready (or set up) an application or other vital document
- Providing interpretation or interpretation services to set up an application or other important document
- Advising someone else that they should apply for a visa
- Passing on to someone else data created by a third individual, without giving significant remark on or clarification of the data.
Accordingly, there are many different types of visas that US Citizens can apply for including:
These can include ETA Visas which can be applied for online and are generally allowed within minutes.
An ETA visa is a different section visa and permits the holder to stay for up to three months at a time. An ETA visa is legitimate for one year. Working in Australia is not allowed on an ETA visa.
Working Holiday Visas
Persons between the age of 18-30 years may be eligible for a Working Holiday visa due to a reciprocal agreement with the US. .
A working holiday visa allows the holder to travel and work in Australia for up to one year, with the possibility of a second working holiday visa that extends the length of stay in Australia to up to two years in total.
Applying as a Skilled Worker
Skilled workers and professionals considering living and working in Australia might that have an occupation on the Skilled Occupation List (SOL) might be able to migrate permanently to Australia using their experience and qualifications. This process is a points test based system and encourages resettlement taking into account a candidate’s capabilities and their reasonableness to suit work deficiencies in Australia.
Looking at the technical nature of the system of Australian immigration law, the grant of a Skilled Visa is ultimately decided by delegates who are re-portable to the Minister of Immigration in the Department of Immigration and Border Protection under powers accommodated legally under Section 499 of the Migration Act.
Effective from 01 January 2009, the priorities were shifted when the Minister made declarations and made changes which would prioritise certain visa applications under the Skill Stream of the set migration program. The changes cemented the preference of candidates with a business employer or fruitful State/Territory selection first and second respectively in the process queue.
Following this, all applications whose named occupation was listed on the Consolidated Skilled Occupation List (CSOL) will be prioritized further down the queue and can have an anticipated longer waiting period until their visa applications are assessed by delegates.
Furthermore, Australian visa applications with a legal migration agency on the Migration Occupations in Demand List (MODL) are third in the set order of priority, trailed by all other remaining candidates.
Accordingly, Anybody intrigued by applying for a visa under the General Skilled Migration classification ought to first finish an Online Assessment to find out their qualification under the skilled visa classes.
Applying for a Family Visa
Family visas are utilized by family members of Australian Citizens and residents looking to migrate to Australia.
The family visa classes are not points tested, but rather require the sponsorship of an Australian Citizens or permanent Australian resident and being eligible for a specific class of visas available.
For example, Australian Partner Visas allow defacto and married couples to apply for a Temporary Visa first which can eventually qualify for permanent residency. Accordingly, unlike the US system which does not currently recognize defacto relationships when considering Partner visas, the Australian system does, meaning that couples much earlier in their development may become eligible for a Partner visa.
Furthermore, there are other family visas available to parents, dependent children, remaining relatives as well as careers of Australian nationals.
Benefits of Appointing a Registered Migration Agent
Registered Migration Agents (RMA’s) must maintain a certain level of professional knowledge and abide by an ethical Code of Conduct. Importantly, these standards are upheld and monitored by the Office of the MARA. Accordingly, by delegating your application to a legally registered migration agency, you can be rest guaranteed that your application will be managed in a professional and effective way ultimately increasing your chances of a successful visa outcome.
In addition, RMA’s must uphold the following key pillars:
1. Legitimate Interests
A migration agency should act dependably with their customer’s best interests in mind and should always provide their clients any important and significant updates pertaining to their Australian visa application.
Migration agencies have an obligation to protect a customer’s personal information at all times.
3. Proficient Conduct
Registered migration agency’s skill and expertise must be reflected by a sound and working clear knowledge of the Migration Act 1974 (Cth) and Migration Regulations 1994 (Cth).
4. Time Efficiency
Registered migration agents must be time efficient and always ensure that they performing their duties in a manner which ensures their clients application is processed within acceptable time limits.
In conclusion, as you can see, the Australian visa framework and system can be complex in the options available to applicants, therefore, it is highly advisable that applicants considering engaging a migration agent to assist with the preparation of their application in order to ensure they give themselves the highest possible chance for their visa to be granted.
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