There are many different types of Visas that you can apply for in Australia and the rules and regulations seem to change each year or so, so it is understandable that the Visa application process can be very confusing. This post will look at the high level common steps that are taken to apply for most Australian Visas.
Disclaimer: This is just a high level overview and it is advised that you consult a registered migration agent to understand the detailed steps you should take given your personal situation.
Step 1: Select the Visa Type/Pathway You Want to Apply for
As stated earlier there are quite a number of different Visa pathways on offer in Australia. Each pathway has different eligibility criteria and restrictions that you should be aware of in order to help you decide if it is the best pathway for you. For example, if you intend to work in Australia then a Visitor Visa is not the best pathway for you as there is a work restriction on this Visa type.
Choosing a sub-optimal pathway, could hinder your future goals of studying, working or living in Australia, so research each possible pathway and linking it to your overall migration objective is critical. This is where the expertise of an experienced Registered Migration Agent could be of assistance to you.
Step 2: Assess if you are eligible for the Visa Pathway You Want to Apply for
Just because you have identified the best pathway to meet your goal of visiting, studying, working or living in Australia does not mean that you may be eligible to apply for it. There are various restrictions in place, dependent on the Visa you wish to apply for such as medical screenings, English proficiency, financial tests, criminal history checks and even age checks that may need to be conducted to deem you eligible.
A Registered Migration Agent would take the guess work away and will provide you the guidance in choosing the optimal pathway that your are most eligible to obtain, taking the hard work out of the process for you.
Step 3: Gather the Correct Paper work and Fill it in Correctly
This step may seem quite simple, however, the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) are very stringent on the quality and completeness of the correct Visa application paper work. Ensuring that the submissions are thorough and follow the format as directed by the DIBP.
Incomplete, ambiguous and poor quality submissions can result in increased processing time, the DIBP seeking clarification and even the outright refusal of the submission. This is where the oversight and review of paper work by a Registered Migration Agent is crucial.
Step 4: Lodge the Application and Make the Payment
After the paper work is in order, the next step is to submit the application to the DIBP either within Australia in person or via the internet or outside of Australia depending on the type of Visa you are applying for and your individual circumstances. A Registered Agent can help determine which method is required for your application.
Additionally, you must also ensure that the payment is made correctly.
Step 5: Grant or Refusal
After lodgement, sit back and await the decision. Depending on your application, you may also be asked to clarify statements made in your application or produce further documentation in order to progress your case.
In the unfortunate event that you are refused you will be informed and you may seek to appeal against the decision. The appeal process can also be quite stressful and as such it is recommended a Migration Agent is used.
As you can see the overall process does not seem long to begin with, but an understanding of the work behind it indicates the time required to fill in an application and the pitfalls with attempting to do the application without a registered migration agent, especially for more complex cases.
The image attached to this post shows how simple the process can be if you nominate me, Anna Molina, Principal Migration Agent at Sophos Migration Specialist (MARN: 1461034) to represent you as your Migration Agent. Contact Me and Book a Consultation.