Thursday, February 24, 2011

Visa Process - A picture speaks a thousand words

Well, like all good dyselxics I think better in pictures than all those words so here is my best understanding of the process:

And I thought it might be interesting to tick stuff off as we go along and, as is inevitable, add extra loops and lumps along the way

The Process

As mentioned I have now received instruction from our migration lawyers which detailed our instructions which, thankfully, didn't self distruct after reading

 For those interested here are the basic steps to getting a visa (abridged version):

  •  I provide personal documents to the agents office (including medical and English test results as required).
  • They prepare Department of Immigration & Citizenship (DIAC) visa application forms for all family members. 
  • These will be sent to me by email to be verified and signed.
  • They will prepare Department of Immigration & Citizenship visa application forms and supporting documents for my employer to complete.
  • Myself and my employer verify, signed and return DIAC forms and supporting documents to them.
  • They prepare written submissions in support of your application which we lodge, together with the DIAC forms, my supporting personal documents and information about my employer
  • They monitor your residency application and liaise with Immigration with regards to any queries or clarification.
  • DIAC notifies us of the outcome of the visa application.
  • Furhter instructions are provided to arrange visa evidencing.

Sounds simple doesn't it.  But wait, this little list starts with a Mount Everest of complication before it even gets started.  That innocent little phase "personal documents" cloaks a much longer list.  The documents needed include:
  • Certified copy of your passport bio-data pages, pages with Australian visa labels and entry and departure stamps.
  • If applicable, certified copy of the passport bio-data pages, and pages with Australian visa labels and entry and departure stamps, for any family members to be included in the application
  • Two recent passport photos for you and any included family members in the application
  • If applicable, certified copy of your marriage certificate/ OR de facto documentation confirming that you and your spouse have lived together for at least the last 12 months.
  • Certified copy of any previous divorce decrees (if applicable).
  • Certified copy of any change of name deeds (if applicable)
  • Certified copy of military discharge certificate for any compulsory or non-compulsory service completed (if applicable).
  • Certified copy of your qualifications (e.g. diploma certificate, bachelors degree etc).
  • Copies of two recent pay slips.
  • Copy of your Subclass 457 approval notification email for you and any included family members
  • Evidence of English language ability.
  • Police clearances for each and every country you have lived for more than 12months in the last 10 years
  • Medical checks.
And so starts the challenge........can I gather together all these pieces of paper before my stamina gives out........well of course I can, I lived in DUBAI!!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

We like it here, please may we stay?

Well it's been quite along time since I last id any blogging and lots has happened since then.  Anybody who has follwed our life on facebook will know we've moved to Australia, had a son (Teddington) and bought a house.  And with all these "life expereicnes" under our belt we've kind of decided we might like ot put down some roots and stay somwhere for a while.  And will Teddington being a ripper aussie nipper we figured whuy not make it his home country - Australia!!

Now there are many ways to get into Australia: Tourist visa, migrant worker visa,
The Australian tourist visa.The Australian working holiday visa, The Australian business visa, The Australian business sponsored visa, The General skilled migration visa, The Spouse, Fiance, Partner and De Facto Visa, The Australian student visa.  And even within all these there are sub-classes and special lists; and failing all these you can always just turn up at Christmas Island and hope for the best......but often that isn't so "best"
So it was that The Co-pilot and I started looking into the more favorable, if burocratically challenging options and it basically came down to two:  Independent Migrant Works Visa or the General Skilled Migrant Visa - Subclass 856 Employer Nominated Visa (I kid you not, that is the name, roles off the tongue doesn't it?  Having made initial inquiries I managed to establish that processing times were 1-3 years and 3-5 months respectively.  With those sort of time frames options two looked best but required my company to sponsor us; something that isn't usually offered according to my terms of employement until you have been with the company 2 years.  We've only been here 1.  However, in the best spirit of "if you don't ask you don't get" I tried my luck and put a proposition to them and they liekd what they heard:  and so we are now heading down the road of General Skilled Migrant Visa - Subclass 856 Employer Nominated Visa or GSMV-S8ENV.......or perhaps we can call it Bob for short

This was all agreed just before Christmas and at the begining of the month I received an email from the companies visa lawyers to explain the process to me and get the ball rolling.  I therefore thought that it woudl be a bit of fun and perhaps an interesting record for prosperity to keep a blog of the whoel process, as I'm sure there is bound to be problems along the - after all this is beurocracy!!

So sit back, get comfy and behold the pantomine of our journey through the world of administratum, as we set sail for AUSTRALIA!!