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Live, work and stay in Australia long term

If you have enjoyed your time downunder so much that you want to call it home then there are a number of options for you to apply to stay long term.

Skilled Independent Visa (sub Class 175)

If your desperate to become a true blue Australian and gain your citizenship then the skilled independent visa will allow you to become a permanent resident as soon as it is issued. Hence to apply for this visa it takes a special type of person and skill set.

Designed for skilled migrants who have expertise in industries that are in a shortage in Australia. The process is quite lengthy and complex and you will be required to have your skills assessed by an independent body. In order to qualify you must be skilled, and have extensive experience in an industry in demand as per the skills shortage list, be under 45 and score at least 120 points on the general points test. If English is not your first language then you will also have to pass the IELTS test to show you have competent level of English.

The visa can take up to 12 months to process but the benefits are you attain permanent residency immediately and can also migrate with your partner and any children you may have. In order to check your eligibility it is advisable to utilize the services of a visa agent so they can asses you suitability and prepare your application to ensure you get it right first time.

The skills shortage lists changes often so for the latest advice check the current list on the Department of Immigration website. Typically medical staff are often in demand and can be a great option if your work in this field

Employer Sponsored

A very popular visa with backpackers and an easier way to remain long term is to be sponsored by an employer. You must work in certain skilled occupations and the employer must be willing to sponsor you (and be pre approved to sponsor by DIAC). Your employer will then nominate you to a position and provide evidence of your relevant skills and reasons as to why you are most suitable to the position. Other requirements are that you will need to attain a certain set wage for the occupation and meet health and English language standards. If you are looking to get sponsored then it is a good idea to start looking as soon as you can as many employers will want you to work for 3-6 months prior to them sponsoring to ensure you are worth your weight. Don’t leave it to the last week then run around asking employers to sponsor you as it reduces you chances. Would you sponsor and be liable for someone you have just met???

Ever wondered why all the recruiters in Australia seem to be English?

You may have come across a number of recruiters in your time down under and wondered why they tended to be mostly English. Recruitment is a popular industry in which to get sponsored and most agencies are already pre approved to sponsor people and very open to using the system. So if you fancy yourself as a recruitment consultant then this can be a great avenue for you.

If you have an employer that is desperate for your skills but for whatever reason they are unable to sponsor you themselves there are a number of agencies which may be able to sponsor you on behalf of your employer. You are in theory sponsored by the agency and sub contracted to an employer. Hence you will be paid by the agency but this may also mean you are eligible for LAFHA (living away from home allowance) which can mean you get more money in your back pocket under certain tax breaks. Failing that, you may be able to apply to work in a regional area with your skill set and sometimes this will lubricate the decision makers. Regional areas vary in relation to the skills you possess but if you are thinking of Sydney or other main cities then it is highly unlikely that they will be considered regional.

Go it Alone and set up a Business!

If you are the next Richard Branson and have a million dollar business idea (well does not have to be million dollar) then one solution would be to establish your own business and this may then allow you to remain in Australia. Like any country Australia are keen to attract overseas money and also skilled businesses. It is a two stage process where you will be permitted a set amount of time to build the business as a temporary resident. If after this time, normally 4 years, you are generating enough revenue or employing Australians or both you may well then be granted permanent residency. Again if you conduct your business in a regional area you may be considered more favorably.

This visa process can be extremely complicated and has a number of varying sub classes so it is best to speak to a registered migration / visa agent to advise of your best options and find out your suitability.

Get Hitched!

If you have met the love of your life downunder and are in an ongoing relationship or married you may be able to apply for a spouse visa. You must be in an ongoing relationship prove it with an Australian citizen or permanent resident. Grabbing the nearest Sheila and running to the local registry office is not enough as you will normally have to have been living together for 12 months minimum and share joint assets e.g. joint bank accounts, photos of you together, flights / holidays, joint bills and so on.

If you are in a genuine relationship and have been for a minimum of 12 months then this is probably one of the easier options and will mean that you will be granted temporary residency for 2 years. After 2 years if you can show you are still together then you will more than likely be granted permanent residency.

If you are yet to meet the love of your life and have to return home to your own country then should you meet them in the future you can apply then…hanging out in Shepherds bush Walkabout could be beneficial!!!

Student Visas

If studying is your thing and you would rather do it in the sunshine then you could enroll on a course. There are vary levels of courses from secondary, tertiary, post graduate and non vocational. This visa would allow you to also be able to work for up to 20 hours per week to supplement your course. The major thing to consider is that you must pay the course fees yourself which can be hefty and be registered and enrolled on a course before the visa is granted. One other thing to remember is that you must actually attend the course and can't just enroll and then vanish as immigration may come knocking on your door.

Word of advice !

If you are serious about living and working in Australia long term then do some forward planning. Ask around and have enough time left on your working holiday visa to be able to work for prospective employers, look at the options and get some advice form a visa agent or migration agent. The system is complicated and those guys know the ins and outs. It may cost you a bit but is more than worth it to live in Oz long term.

Finally, do not overstay your visa!! Immigration will catch up with you and you will be deported immediately. If you get caught or rock up at the airport to leave having overstayed you may as well kiss goodbye to your dream of living in OZ and receive a ban for a few years plus mess up any future visa applications both to Australia and potentially other countries. Invest some time and money in research and using a visa agent. For most visas if you have applied and your current visa expires you are normally able to apply for a bridging visa whilst they assess your application.

You may also be interested in

1 year Australian working holiday Visas

2nd year Australian working holiday visa


Disclaimer: Visa requirements and types change continually so for the most up to date advice you should check out the Department of Immigration’s website or consult a migration agent. The information contained on this page is not to be taken as specialist advice and to be used as a general overview of possible options

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