Australia, also known as ‘The Land Down Under’ is generally associated with kangaroos, koalas, Crocodile Dundee and the outback. With a mixture of thriving urban centers and vast open spaces in the heart of the country, Australia is a great place to live with a culture that is laid-back and people who are welcoming and friendly. It is also one of the premiere study abroad destinations in the world as the country provides globally recognized degrees and a high-level of classroom instruction. According to ICEF Monitor (an organization dedicated to providing market data for the international education industry), the number of international students in Australia grew by 11.4% in 2018. Currently, there are 693,750 international students enrolled in the country’s universities and colleges. 8 Australian universities were ranked in the top 100, according to the QS World University rankings, with several other institutes ranking highly in all the recognised publications of university rankings globally.
Many international students who move to Australia wish to stay back to work and live after they have completed their degrees due to the high standards of living in the country, as well as the chance to further their careers. This article seeks to provide information on how to secure a Permanent Residence (PR) after completing your studies in Australia.
A permanent resident refers to a person who moved to Australia and has not yet been granted their citizenship. They key factors of a permanent residency are:
A large number of international students in Australia aspire to get permanent residency after they have completed their course of study. To do this, you must apply for a visa through the SkillSelect program, which is managed by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection. It is an online portal which allows potential applicants to submit their considerations for a skilled visa through something called an EOI or Expression of Interest. The conditions to apply for an EOI are:
This portal allows applications for multiple visas as all applications for permanent or provisional visas go through the SkillSelect system. Every fortnight, the Department of Immigration sends out invites to the highest ranked applicants through an automated system. To receive an invitation you must pass the skilled migration points test. For more information on the points test and how scores are calculated for each separate visa class, visit the offical website.
Note: The first step to sending in your EOI is to nominate an occupation on the Skilled Occupation List. If your occupation is not on the SOL, you will need to secure a sponsorship by either a state government or an employer. Also, before you can send in your EOI, you will have to complete the skills assessment and English language testing as well.
The Skilled Independent Visa (subclass 189) is a visa for applicants who have not been sponsored by an employer, a state/territory or a family member who is a permanent resident or citizen of Australia. It costs approximately AUD 4,045. This visa will allow you to live and work permanently anywhere in Australia and also has provisions for you to include your family members in the application process. The application process for this visa requires you to secure a positive skills assessment before you send in your EOI through the SkillSelect portal. After you have received an invitation to apply from the Department of Home Affairs, you will have to submit your final, completed application for approval which will grant you your visa. To apply for this visa, you must pass the following requirements:
Note: If your application is successful and you receive the visa, you will be allowed 5 years to live and work in Australia with multiple entry granted on your travels outside the country. If you live for 4 consecutive years in Australia under this visa, you are eligible to apply for citizenship. You can also live in Australia for 2 of the 5 years and still get your visa renewed for a further 5 years.
The Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186) is a visa that allows Australian employers to sponsor international workers by providing them job opportunities and the chance to live and work permanently in Australia. The key features of this visa are that it allows the holder to work and stay in Australia indefinitely as a permanent resident, access to MediCare, travel outside Australia with multiple return entries over a period of 5 years and sponsor eligible relatives for a variety of Australian visas. The Employer Nomination Scheme has 3 streams through which potential applicants are filtered, however for this article we will be taking a look at the most relevant stream for international students which is the ‘Direct Entry stream’.
The Direct Entry stream is designed for international applicants who do not meet the requirements of the Temporary Residence Transition stream, i.e. don’t have a subclass 457 visa and all the factors associated with it. Applicants going through the Direct Entry Stream have to adhere to the criteria listed below:
The nominating employer must:
The position you are nominated for must:
The visa applicant must:
Note: If you still aren’t perfectly clear about the Australian visas and application process, visit the official website of the Australian government.
The Skilled Independent Visa is considered to be the best chance for international students to secure their permanent residency in Australia after they have completed their education. Your approval for a GSM or General Skilled Migration category visa (the skilled independent visa is part of this category) is highly dependent upon how well you score in the Points Test. The following are some of the ways you can boost your scores in the test:
Note: Please know that migration policies are in a constant state of flux, especially in the case of Australia. Research is a key tool that will help you navigate through the myriad of visas and constantly changing rules and regulations.
A. Yes, Australia provides post-study extensions on student visas for international students to allow them to live in the country and increase their degree qualifications or find work in their chosen fields. A post-study work visa can even allow you to stay in the country for up to 4 years. For more detailed information, follow Post study work permit Australia article.
A. SkillSelect is a program managed by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection. It is an online portal which allows potential applicants to submit their considerations for a skilled visa through something called an EOI or Expression of interest. Your EOI is graded based on a points system and your eligibility for permanent residency is calculated accordingly.
A. The Skilled Independent Visa (subclass 189) is a visa for applicants who have not been sponsored by an employer, a state/territory or a family member who is a permanent resident or citizen of Australia. This visa will allow you to live and work permanently anywhere in Australia and also has provisions for you to include your family members in the application process.
A. In simple terms, this program allows a company to nominate a chosen applicant for a relevant position in their organization. A nomination will allow the applicant to apply for a visa which in turn will let them live and work in Australia as a permanent resident. Employer Nomination Program is dependent upon the labour needs of the Australian job market.