We have reached that time of the year where things can be shaken up in the world of immigration. 1st July always holds some changes and this year is no exception. The major changes, in short, are outlined below. We at TranQuill Legal know just how confusing all these changes can be and how they may impact you. If you have any questions relating to visas, immigration or AAT/FCC matters, do not hesitate to contact us today and we can guide you through the migration maze.
Visa changes from 1st July
Visa fee increases – it looks like an average of 5.4% increase for almost all visa types will be implemented. See a few of the most popular visas and the likely fees for the next year (subject to amendments):
- Student visa – up from $575 to $606
- Partner visa – up from $7,160 to $7,547
- General skilled migration – up from $3,755 to $3,958
- Graduate temporary subclass 485 – up from $1,535 to $1,618
Immigration cap to be lowered – the Federal Government announced in March this year that it will cut back Australia’s annual permanent immigration intake to 160,000
New Regional visas – The government also announced an increase in the number of visa places for regional Australia with 23,000 skilled visas being reserved for those willing to live and work in the regions.
Additional points for skilled migration – Visa applicants sponsored or nominated for these regional visas will have the benefit of five extra points towards their points test.
New Temporary Sponsored Parent visa – Applications for the new Temporary Sponsored Parent are being accepted from 1 July 2019. The visa is being made available this year after the legislation it was tied to passed through the federal parliament in October last year.
Citizenship changes abandoned – According to media reports, the Federal Government has abandoned the legislation that would have made migrants to wait longer and prove they have competent English proficiency before they could apply for Australian citizenship.