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Australia Immigration Services
With offices in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, Newland Chase Australia provides corporations and individuals operating in Australia with complete support for all their immigration and visa needs – inbound to Australia and outbound to more than 190 countries around the world. Our full spectrum of services allows us to manage all of your business visa and employee immigration needs.
Australia’s migration laws are complex and constantly changing. With our unmatched experience, knowledge, and expertise we will guide clients through the entire process – supporting companies and individuals each step of the way. At the core of our leadership team are several former senior managers and officers of the Australian Department of Immigration with experience across the operational, policy, and secretariat areas of the Department.
Australia Immigration Management
We provide support in all areas of Australian immigration for corporations and individuals – from short-term work authorization and temporary residency to long-term work authorization, permanent residency, and citizenship, including both company employees and accompanying family members. Our approach covers you from comprehensive guidance and pre-planning of new assignments and immigration options to completion of all in-country requirements to ongoing compliance monitoring.
For up-to-date information on the most common employer-sponsored immigration routes in Australia, see Immigration Summary under the tab to the right.
Comprehensive Global Immigration Management
For corporations and individuals located in Australia, we also provide support in all areas of immigration to more than 190 countries around the world. Our Australia team is part of the larger Newland Chase global team of 1,700+ expert immigration and visa professionals – specializing in everything from short-term work assignments and temporary residency to long-term work assignments, permanent residency, and citizenship throughout the world.
Business Traveler Management
Business visitor visas are a key component of a globally mobile workforce – allowing individuals to enter Australia and other countries for non-work business activities. Business visitor visas typically apply to business meetings, seminars, conferences, trade shows, limited sales activities, contract negotiations, and some supervisory activities. Newland Chase Australia offers comprehensive services for business travelers both inbound to Australia and outbound to more than 190 countries.
Our services include everything from personalized assessment of the activities and destination for visa compliance to obtaining the proper visas to tracking of the number and length of stays of your business travelers for legal compliance.
Immigration Policy and Compliance
Our Australia immigration experts offer an extensive suite of advisory services and immigration compliance strategies to ensure that your organization and employees remain compliant with all Australian immigration and visa requirements. Our services include strategic guidance on immigration plans, development and implementation of internal immigration policies and processes, sponsor compliance, education and training, audit support (including mock audits), and immigration compliance technology solutions.
Consulting and Advisory Services
Our Australia immigration experts act as trusted business advisors – supporting you in virtually any unique or complex immigration-related matter. Our Australia team is able to manage the scope of immigration in large-scale projects and employee moves, as well as guide you through the immigration complexities involved in corporate restructuring, mergers, and acquisitions.
Skilled Individual Migration
We also support skilled individuals for migration to Australia without the sponsorship of an employer or close family members. There are three basic streams under the General Skilled Migration program.
Subclass 189 Skilled Independent Visa
This is a permanent visa for skilled people under 45 years of age and who are not sponsored by a family member, employer, or state or territory government. To apply for this visa, applicants must receive an invitation to lodge a visa application, have a positive skills assessment for an occupation on the Medium and Long-term Skills Shortage List (MLTSSL), and score at least 65 points on a points test. Points can be given for such factors as age, English language proficiency, qualifications and work experience, study in Australia or completion of a professional year in Australia in certain occupations, partners who are also skilled, and skills translating another language into English.
There is also a streamlined pathway for New Zealand citizens living in Australia to apply for a Subclass 189 visa. To qualify under this pathway, the NZ citizen must have been usually resident in Australia for a continuous period of five (5) years immediately prior to the date of application and must have commenced that period of usual residence on or before 19 February 2016. Applicants must also have tax assessment notices that show a taxable income of at least a specified amount in the five (5) years immediately prior to the date of application.
190 Skilled Sponsored Visa
Subclass 190 visas is a permanent visa for skilled people under 45 years of age and who are sponsored by a State or Territory of Australia. To apply for this visa, applicants must first be nominated by a State or Territory who will then send an invitation to lodge a visa application. You must have a positive skills assessment for an occupation on the either the Medium and Long-term Skills Shortage List (MLTSSL) or the Short-Term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL), and your occupation needs to be on the particular State or Territory list of needed occupations from which you are seeking nomination. There may also be additional State- or Territory-specific requirements needed to receive the nomination.
Similar to the Subclass 189 visa, applicants must score at least 65 points on a points test. In addition to the points criteria listed above for the Subclass 189 visa, applicants can receive an additional five (5) points for State/Territory nomination.
Subclass 491 Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visas are sponsored regional temporary visas. This visa is valid for five (5) years and requires that you live and work in a regional area of Australia for at least three (3) years. Once applicants meet these criteria, there is a pathway to a permanent visa under Subclass 191.
For the state nominated pathway, the application process and requirements are similar to those for the Subclass 190 visa, including the points test, but you can receive an additional fifteen (15) points for the state nomination.
The subclass 491 visa also has a family-sponsored pathway if the applicant has an eligible family member living in a regional area of Australia. You must have an occupation on the MLTSSL to apply and, like the Subclass 189 visa, you need to receive an invitation as part of the monthly invitation rounds before applying for this visa.
Subclass 485 Graduate Visa
This visa is for international students who have recently graduated from an Australian education institution. The 485 visa allows you to live, work, and study in Australia temporarily after you have finished your studies. There are two streams under this visa – (1) a Graduate Work Stream (valid for 18 months) and (2) a Post-Study Work Stream (valid for two to four years, depending on your course of study).
There are common application requirements for both streams as well as some requirements that are specific to each stream. The common criteria are that you are already in Australia, are younger than 50 years of age, held an eligible student visa within the last six months, meet the Australian study requirement, evidence English language proficiency, and have adequate health insurance.
In addition to the common criteria, under the Graduate Work Stream, you must have applied for a skills assessment of an occupation that is on the Medium and Long-term Skills Shortage List (MLTSSL) at the time of application and has undertaken study in Australia that is relevant to your nominated occupation.
In addition to the common criteria, under the Post-Study Work Stream, you must have undertaken study in Australia at least at a bachelor degree level and applied for your first student visa after 5 November 2011.
From 16 November 2019, students who complete their studies in Regional Australia (defined as anywhere outside Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane metropolitan areas) are eligible for an additional one or two years on their 485 visas.
We support a range of Family Visa options in Australia. Our immigration specialists will discuss your migration plans and help determine the best way to unite or reunite you with family in Australia.
Partner Visas (Subclasses 300, 309/100, 820/801)
Partner visas allow individuals in relationships with Australian Citizens, Australian Permanent Residents, or Eligible New Zealand Citizens to be sponsored for a visa to live in Australia. There are three different types of Partner visas:
- Partner (Marriage) visas – Where the applicant is legally married to the sponsor;
- Partner (De Facto) visas – Where the applicant is in a de facto relationship with the sponsor – i.e. living together like a married couple for a period of at least twelve (12) months immediately prior to lodging the application. (Note that this twelve-month period may be waived if the relationship has been registered as a Civil Union or Partnership – currently recognized in Queensland, Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales, Victoria, and Tasmania only); and
- Prospective Marriage (Fiancé) visas – Where the applicant is engaged to be married to their sponsor, have personally met once they both are over 18 years of age, and are legally able to marry.
Note that same-sex marriage is now recognized in Australia, and same-sex couples are able to apply for Partner (Marriage) and Prospective Marriage (Fiancé) visas.
All partner applications are judged on the ‘genuineness’ of the relationship. Applicants are required to prove that they are in a long-term, committed relationship with their sponsor. This is done by providing documentation showing that they have a shared life and mutual commitment, covering four areas of assessment: financial aspects, shared household, social aspects, and nature of the commitment.
Parent visas (Subclasses 103, 173, 143, 804, 864, 884)
Parent visas are for parents who wish to migrate to Australia to be with their children. One of their children must sponsor the application, and the child must be an Australian citizen or permanent resident who is settled in Australia. To be eligible for a Parent visa, applicants must meet what is called the ‘Balance of Family‘ (BoF) test. This means applicants must have at least half of their children living in Australia as permanent residents or Australian citizens, or more of their children living in Australia as permanent residents or Australian citizens than living in any other single country.
There are two pathways to apply for a Parent visa:
- Standard Parent (non-contributory) – This pathway has a low second Visa Application Charge but has long application processing times.
- Contributory Parent – This pathway has a high second Visa Application Charge but has shorter application processing times.
Temporary Sponsored Parent Visa (Subclass 870)
The Subclass 870 Temporary Sponsored Parent visa enables parents of Australian citizens or permanent residents to be sponsored for an extended temporary stay in Australia. This visa does not lead to permanent residency.
The parent must be sponsored by a child who is an Australian citizen or permanent resident, who has been usually resident in Australia for at least four years. There is a separate sponsorship process for this visa and the sponsor must meet an income threshold, agree to pay the costs of medical and aged care, provide financial support and accommodation, and advise Immigration on any change of circumstances.
Retirement Visa Holder: The Subclass 410 Retirement visa and Subclass 405 Investor Retirement visa have closed to new applicants, so it is only possible to apply if you already hold one of these visas. From 17 November 2018 the government implemented a new pathway to permanent residency for certain Retirement and Investor Retirement visa holders. This is through a Parent visa stream, and does not require applicants to meet the BoF test or to have an Australian sponsor. Applicants must still meet the standard health and character requirements, and the second Visa Application Charge is still payable.
Children, Adoption, Orphan Relative, etc.
Child and Adoption visas allow parents to sponsor their child for a permanent visa. This usually occurs when a child is born overseas or adopted overseas by an Australian permanent resident.
Orphan Relative visas allow eligible relatives in Australia to sponsor children who have no parents or their parents are unable to care for them.
New Zealand Citizen Family Relationship visas allow New Zealand Citizens in Australia to sponsor their partners and family members.
Other visas in this category include Carer visas, Aged Dependent Relative visas, and Remaining Relative visas.
High Net Worth Migration
In today’s global marketplace, many individuals are increasingly discovering the benefits of migration and relocation overseas for personal and business goals. Getting the right advice, guidance, and assistance is key to ensuring a successful and pain-free relocation process. Our immigration specialists have significant expertise in global migration solutions for business people and investors, and we can support clients through the entire migration process.
Subclass 188 Business Innovation and Investment Visa
This visa is a provisional visa that allows people to move to Australia to engage in a business or investment activities in Australia. There are five different streams under the Subclass 188 visa program, commonly referred to using a letter after the subclass number. These five streams include:
- Business Innovation Stream (188A);
- Investor Stream (188B);
- Significant Investor Stream (188C);
- Premium Investor Stream (188D); and
- Entrepreneur Stream (188E).
There are also two extension streams for the 188A and 188C visas that allow the visa holder to extend the time on the provisional visa before they are required to meet the criteria for the permanent visa.
Business Innovation Stream visas allow applicants to hold provisional visas for four (4) years and progress to a permanent visa (Subclass 888) after two (2) years of managing a business in Australia. During the two years, the applicant must spend at least twelve months in Australia. The standard criteria for the Subclass 188A visa include:
- Applicants must be less than 55 years of age (unless the requirement is waived by the nominating state or territory);
- Score of at least 65 points in the Business Skills points test;
- Ownership interest in, and direct management of, one or two businesses that have at least an annual turnover of AUD 500,000 for two of the last four years;
- Personal and business assets totaling at least AUD 800,000; and
- Intention to hold an ownership interest and be involved in the management of a business in Australia.
Business Investor Stream visas allow applicants to hold provisional visas for four (4) years before the applicant can progress to a permanent visa (Subclass 888). During the four years, the applicant must spend at least two (2) years in Australia. The standard criteria for the Subclass 188B visa include:
- Applicant must be less than 55 years of age (unless the required is waived by the nominating state or territory);
- Score of at least 65 points in the Business Skills points test;
- Applicant is a successful business owner or investor;
- At least 3 years’ experience managing eligible investments or businesses;
- At least 10% ownership in a business or have at least AUD 1.5 million in eligible investments for one year out of the past five years;
- Net business and personal assets of AUD 2.25 million for the last two years; and
- Investment in state or territory government bonds of AUD 1.5 million for four years.
Business Significant Investor Stream visas allow applicants to hold provisional visas for four years before the applicant can progress to a permanent visa (Subclass 888). During the four years, the applicant must spend at least 40 days in Australia. The standard criteria for the Subclass 188C visa include:
- Net assets of at least AUD 5 million and evidence that the funds are lawfully acquired and are able to be transferred; and
- Complying investment in Australia of at least AUD 5 million for four (4) years – consisting of AUD 500,000 in venture capital funds, AUD 1.5 million in emerging company investments, and AUD 3 million in other managed investment funds (no more than 10% of which can be in residential property).
Business Premium Investor Stream visas allow applicants to hold provisional visas for 12 months before the applicant can progress to a permanent visa (Subclass 888). The standard criteria for the Subclass 188D visa include:
- Net assets of at least AUD 15 million and evidence that the funds are lawfully acquired and are able to be transferred;
- Complying investment in Australia of at least AUD 15 million for four (4) years – consisting of Australian stocks, Australian government bonds, corporate bonds, property (excluding residential property), and government approved charity contribution.
Entrepreneur Stream visas allow applicants to hold provisional visas for four (4) years before the applicant can progress to a permanent visa (Subclass 888). The standard criteria for the Subclass 188E visa include:
- Applicant must be less than 55 years of age (unless a state or territory determines the applicant’s activity will have exceptional economic benefit to the state or territory);
- Competent English language fluency;
- Undertaking or proposing to undertake a complying entrepreneur activity (defined as an innovative idea for a product or service that will be developed and commercialized in Australia);
- At least AUD 200,000 in funding from a specific entity under a legally binding agreement (at the time of the agreement, the applicant must hold at least 30% interest in the activity); and
- Business plan in place detailing how the idea will lead to the development of the product or service in Australia.
Subclass 132 Business Talent Visa
This is a permanent visa that can be applied for upfront without having to spend time in Australia on a provisional visa. It requires applicants firstly to be nominated by a state or territory government before being invited to apply for the visa. There are two streams to the Business Talent visa – (1) the Significant Business History Stream and (2) the Venture Capital Entrepreneur Stream.
To apply for the Significant Business History Stream, you must:
- Have an ownership interest in a business that for two (2) of the last four (4) years had an annual turnover of at least AUD 3 million;
- Be 55 years of age or less (unless nominating state or territory determines exceptional economic benefit);
- Have net assets in a business totaling at least AUD 400,000;
- Have net personal and business assets of at least AUD 1.5 million; and
- Have the genuine intention to establish or participate in a business activity in Australia.
To apply for the Venture Capital Entrepreneur Stream, you must:
- Have obtained AUD 1 million in venture capital funding to develop a business idea;
- Have entered into a formal agreement with a venture capital firm and meet the requirements of the agreement once you have entered Australia; and
- Have a genuine interest in developing and maintaining the business or investment.
In order to be eligible for Australian citizenship, applicants must:
- Be permanent residents at the time of application and at the time of decision;
- Meet the in-country residence requirements (see below);
- Satisfy authorities that they are of good character;
- Have a basic knowledge of the English language, tested through interview or by the Citizenship test;
- Have an adequate knowledge of the responsibilities and privileges of Australian citizenship; and
- Intend to reside in, or maintain a close and continuing association with, Australia.
Applicants are required to meet a number of residence requirements, including:
- Twelve (12) months as a permanent resident; and
- Being lawfully resident in Australia for four (4) years immediately prior to lodgment; and
- Cumulative absences from Australia being no more than a total of twelve (12) months in the last four years and not more than 90 days in the twelve (12) months immediately before applying.
For the purposes of calculating the time in residence, time spent on temporary visas (i.e. Student, Working Holiday, Tourist, Bridging Visa) prior to grant of permanent residency is counted. Note also that there are very limited discretions whereby periods of residence not usually counted due to administrative error, service in the military, or elite sporting organizations may be counted toward the residency requirement.
In the event that a visa application is refused or a visa cancelled, there may be options to review and appeal the decision by way of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal and Ministerial Intervention or by applying for revocation of the cancellation. Our Australian immigration team has successfully appealed hundreds of applications and understands the procedures and processes of the tribunal and Minister. We guide clients through the steps to lodge their appeals and submit the most appropriate documentation for their case. We also assist our clients in preparing for a hearing if required.
The Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) has now assumed the functions of the previous Migration Review Tribunal, Refugee Review Tribunal, and Social Security Appeals Tribunals. It conducts independent reviews of the merits of administrative decisions made under Commonwealth law. It reviews decisions made by Australian Government ministers, departments, and agencies and, in limited circumstances, decisions made by state government and non-government bodies. The AAT takes a fresh look at all of the facts, law, and policy relating to the decision and arrives at its own decision. To this end, it has the power to affirm, vary, or set aside a decision or remit a decision to the decision-maker for reconsideration.
If the AAT affirms the decision that a visa application was rightfully refused, then there may be the option to appeal directly to the Minister of Immigration to intervene in a case. If the Minister chooses to intervene, they have discretion to grant any visa they see fit.
If authorities have canceled a visa while you are in Australia, you may be able to apply for revocation of this decision. However, strict timeframes apply. It is imperative that an application is made within 28 days of a cancellation decision. Once this period has elapsed, there are few options available thereafter. Note that revocation applications require detailed legal submissions and supporting documentation, so it is critical to engage a representative that has experience in this area for assistance.
Our Australia immigration experts act as trusted business advisors – supporting you in virtually any unique or complex immigration-related matter. Our Australia team is able to manage the scope of immigration in large-scale projects and employee moves, as well as guide you through the immigration complexities involved in corporate restructuring, mergers, and acquisitions. Below is an overview the more common employment-based immigration routes that we manage for employers.
The Subclass 400 Temporary Work (Short-Stay Specialist) visa is for short-term assignees who will be in Australia for highly specialised, non-ongoing work or to participate in an event at the invitation of an Australian organisation.
This visa is usually granted for a stay of up to three months within a 12-month period, although up to six months may be granted at the discretion of the Australian authorities, and in very limited circumstances (with a strong business case).
This visa cannot be extended, but can be applied for again from outside Australia, in the event that a return visit is required due to the nature of the work. Multiple visas are unlikely to be granted for an applicant to remain onshore for any more than 6 months in any 12-month period, as the work would generally be deemed ‘ongoing’ and no longer within the scope of the 400 visa.
The Subclass 482 Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa is designed for employers wishing to sponsor overseas workers to fill nominated skilled positions in Australia on a temporary basis. Employers can be either Australian or overseas entities.
The 482 Visa is divided into two main streams, determined by the nominated occupation: short-term and medium-term.
The TSS (Subclass 482) Medium-Term stream is available for occupations listed on the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) or the Regional Occupation List (ROL). It can be issued for up to four years, may be renewed and may lead to Australian permanent residency.
The TSS (Subclass 482) Short-Term stream is available for occupations listed on the Short-term Skilled Occupation list (STSOL). It can be issued for up to two years, may be renewed onshore once and does not lead to Australian permanent residency.
The applicant must have relevant skills and experience corresponding to ANZSCO. If the applicant does not have a tertiary qualification, they will need the equivalent relevant experience in the nominated occupation in the past five years. As a general rule, the immigration authorities will expect to see at least five years of experience for post-professional positions and three years for trade positions.
If providing a qualification, the primary applicant must also demonstrate at least two years' relevant work experience. Some primary TSS visa applicants must undergo a mandatory skills assessment as part of the visa application process.
English language proficiency tests are required for all principal applicants unless the applicant::
- holds a passport from Canada/Ireland/New Zealand/UK/USA;
- can demonstrate at least five cumulative years of full-time study in a secondary and/or higher education institution where the instruction was delivered in English; or
- is an intra-company transferee with a guaranteed base salary of over AUD 96,400 per year.
The Subclass 494 Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) visa allows Australian employers to fill skilled positions in Regional Australia (generally defined as anywhere outside the Brisbane, Sydney, or Melbourne metropolitan areas). Applicants must must be under 45 years old, have competent English and hold a successful skills assessment at the time of lodgement.
There must be a Standard Business Sponsorship (SBS) or Labour Agreement, and a Nomination either approved or submitted before a visa application can be lodged. Nomination applications must include evidence that Labour Market Testing has been undertaken, as well as advice from a Regional Certifying Body confirming that the market rate is acceptable for the local area. A Skilling Australians Fund (SAF) levy is payable.
Nomination applications must include evidence that Labour Market Testing has been undertaken, as well as advice from a Regional Certifying Body confirming that the market rate is acceptable for the local area. A Skilling Australians Fund (SAF) levy is payable.
Once granted, the visa will be valid for five years, with a number of compliance conditions. Holders are also eligible for Medicare, so private health insurance is not required.
Standard Business Sponsorship (SBS) allows Australian and overseas businesses to sponsor foreign nationals for the Temporary Skills Shortage (TSS) and Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (provisional) visa. In order to be approved as a sponsor, the business will firstly need to demonstrate that it is actively and lawfully operating, and that no adverse information is known about the business. An SBS is valid for five years from the date of approval. Once approved, the business is then eligible to nominate an unlimited number of applicants until the SBS expires. As an approved sponsor, the business is obliged to abide by the relevant sponsorship requirements. These sponsor obligations are wide reaching and aim to ensure that overseas workers are not disadvantaged. Our Australian immigration experts will assist you in obtaining and maintaining your SBS by providing you with the support you need to maintain compliance.
Accredited Sponsorship Status – Sponsors who qualify for accredited status will receive priority processing of all TSS nomination and visa applications. In addition to application for sponsorship, in order to qualify as an accredited sponsor, the business must show that it meets additional requirements relating to the percentage of Australian employees in its workforce, turnover, usage of the 457/TSS program, and that it has wages set in accordance with an Enterprise Agreement or an internal salary table that reflects the current market salary rates.
The Subclass 186 Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) is a permanent residency route which allows Australian employers to fill highly-skilled positions in Australia with a non-Australian citizen or resident.
The 186 visa has three streams with differing criteria:
- Direct Entry - Applicant must demonstrate at least three years relevant, full-time work experience and pass a skills assessment by the authorised professional body;
- Temporary Residence Transitional - Hold a 457/TSS visa and have worked for the nominating employer for at least a period of three years’ full time (alternative provisions apply to certain 457 visa holders – contact us for further information);
- Agreement Stream - be sponsored by an employer through a labour agreement with permanent positions, and meet all relevant criteria set out in the agreement.
In all streams, the nominating employer is required to lodge a nomination application for the position of the visa applicant and demonstrate that there is a genuine need for the visa applicant to fill the position.
Nationals of New Zealand may travel to Australia and take up employment without restriction and without the need to apply for a visa. New Zealand Citizens are granted a Subclass 444 Special Category visa at the border every time they enter Australia. Please note this arrangement does not apply to permanent residents of New Zealand.
Our team of 50 Australian immigration consultants are highly qualified and dedicated professionals with extensive experience in all aspects of Australian immigration. They come from the best of legal, consulting, in-house corporate, and government backgrounds, and bring a breadth of experience and insight both in immigration and a multitude of industry sectors. Every Newland Chase Australia consultant is a registered Migration Agent with the Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority (MARA) and is a member of the Migration Institute of Australia (MIA). In addition to English, a number of our team members can communicate with clients in their native languages – such as Mandarin, Thai, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Urdu, and Hindi. With a dedication to service and a consultative approach, our people act as your trusted advisors and partners in achieving your business goals in Australia.
Our Australian leadership team directs over 50 immigration experts working for you in Australia. Meet our Australia leadership team:
+61 3 9804 8887
Vice President, Business Development, Asia Pacific
+61 0 7 3121 2400
+61 3 8547 6341
Support Services Manager
+61 7 3121 2400