The Australian high standard of living and adventurous lifestyle attracts many immigrants to its shores and are two of the main reasons why people seek to live here permanently. Permanent residents (PR) in Australia have the right to work, public education, sponsorship of relatives and are allowed to travel within Australia or abroad and back if they wish to do so. While permanent residents are not citizens, they do have the option to become citizens after meeting the residency requirement. There are more than a few means to migrate to Australia. Three of the most common ways of becoming a permanent resident are through gaining:
Australia consistently ranks as one of the most desirable countries to live in the world. It is a country of opportunities, both personal and professional. It offers universal healthcare, high-quality education, world-famous scenery and a pleasant climate. Those who gain PR in Australia are entitled to many benefits including:
Once you have acquired an Australia PR, you may remain in the country indefinitely as the initial 5-year grant period can be renewed an unlimited number of times. If you are overseas and your 5-year grant period has expired, you may still apply for and return on a resident return visa as a method of renewing your permanent residence.
Permanent residents may sponsor a family member or several family members to enter Australia on certain types of visas. There may be certain residence and income requirements you must meet to be eligible.
Once you have lodged your permanent visa application, you become eligible to enrol in Medicare. Medicare provides free treatment at public hospitals, access to subsidised medical care (medical services and medicine), cheaper health insurance and bulk billing.
If you have permanent residency for 2 years or more, you can access Australian government services such as social welfare, social security payments and other aids associated with illnesses, unemployment, maternity and education.
As a permanent resident of Australia, you have access to financial support through Higher Education Loans Programs (HELP). HELP is a loan for students that are enrolled in a public university and allows them to borrow tuition fees and pay them back in the future. Residents will only need to begin paying it back once they have exceeded the compulsory repayment threshold.
Permanent residency is a clear pathway to Australian citizenship. To be eligible, they must have resided in Australia for 4 years or more and at least 1 year as a permanent resident. Australian citizens have additional benefits including the right to vote, re-entry into Australia and can apply for government jobs.
The children of an Australian citizen or permanent resident automatically acquire Australian citizenship at birth, providing them with immediate access to all the above benefits and more.
Applying for Australian PR can be a lengthy process, it is imperative to gather as much information about the process and what visa category is suitable for you. If you are unsure about steps in the pathway to gaining PR, we would recommend that you speak with a professional consultant. They can paint the clearest picture of what needs to be done in your particular scenario as every application is different.
Once you have identified the suitable visa category and you must begin compiling all the essential documents to submit when you’re invited to apply for the visa. This can be a timely process, so you should start collecting the documents as early as possible.
You must be able to prove your English language skills by meeting the English criteria at the time you are invited to apply for the visa. This is something that you can start preparing for ahead of time before you even apply for your visa. You can prove your level of English language skills if you either:
An applicant is required to meet the Australian government’s character and health requirements. These requirements are to ensure all visa applicants are mentally and physically fit to work, live and contribute to Australian society.
The PR application process is a points-based system. The applicant must submit an EOI (expression of interest) in the Australian Skill Select System online. This system maintains an applicant’s profile details like name, age, gender, work experience, language ability, qualification. The Australian Skill Select System then generates points based on the profile and the applicant’s collective score must reach a minimum of 60 points to be eligible to apply for a PR visa. The higher the points, the better the applicant’s chances are of acquiring an invitation to apply for PR.
Since Australian PR is awarded through a points test, there any numerous ways to increase your chances to obtain it by receiving as many additional points as possible. The 10 areas that you can increase points for are:
The most common areas where applicants boost their points are age, employment, diploma or trade qualification, de facto partner skills and their level of English.
Whether you are a native English speaker or not, passing the IELTS exam can provide valuable points. It is a valuable way to achieve additional points and increase your chances of PR.
It is worth keeping in mind that you can study for the IELTS test before your application date and is a great way to get those vital points.
Work experience within your nominated skilled occupation or a closely related skilled occupation can help you gain additional PR application points. As little as one year of work experience can earn 5 extra points. Work experience from overseas and onshore can both be counted, so this is something to keep in mind before applying. A maximum of 20 points can be awarded to an individual for employment experience.
International students who complete a course associated with a given occupation that is found in the Australian Skilled Occupation List have a higher chance of receiving PR. As soon as you complete 2 years of study from a recognised Australian University, vocational school, or college, you can apply for an Australian post-study work visa. This visa allows students to temporarily work and stay in Australia for 2 – 4 years, depending on their qualifications. 2 – 4 years is more than enough time to gain additional points for your PR application.
Your age greatly affects your points. For instance, those who are between the age of 25 and 32 get the highest score of up to 30 points. Whereas, people aged 45 years and over will not receive any points. If you are eligible to apply before the age of 32 it may be worth pursuing earlier rather than later.
If you are nominated by a state or territory government for Visa Subclass 190, this can earn five points. Applying for PR in regional areas is becoming increasingly popular. Students who completed an Australian study requirement of 2 years in a regional area are qualified to obtain an additional 5 points.
The process of getting PR in Australia can be lengthy and difficult but it is attainable. It is important to do your research before applying and to understand where points can be gained. If you need help getting PR, book a consultation with one of our consultants today. Our team of experienced immigration lawyers and migration agents look forward to assisting you with your Australian visa.
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