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Changes to processing of 485 visa applications

The contents of this article are correct as at 15 April 2011.

What is new?

Prior to the implementation of a new points test for general skilled migration on 1 July 2011, the Minister for Immigration has announced the manner in which applications for 485 visas will be processed.

The effect of these processing arrangements is that some 485 applications may be finalised before 1 July 2011.

Which 485 applications are eligible?

Under the new arrangements, subclass 485 applications will be considered in the following order:

  1. Applications from people who have completed a Professional Year who lodged a subclass 485 application before 17 March 2011

  2. Subclass 485 applications lodged between 9 February 2010 and 30 June 2010 where the nominated occupation was on the Skilled Occupation List (SOL) Schedule 3 in effect from 1 July 2010.

All other subclass 485 applications will generally be processed based on the date they were received. 

Does this change guarantee that an eligible 485 application will be processed by 30 June 2011?

The Department has indicated that every effort will be made to finalise as many applications as possible. However, no guarantees can be given about the outcome or timing of any individual application.

When will these new processing arrangements end?

The Department has indicated that the newly implemented process will end on 30 June 2011.

Will this affect processing times for 2011-2012?

The Department has indicated that processing times will return to published service standards of 12 months in 2011-12.

If you have any questions about this article or the 485 visa, please click this link to contact Visa Lawyers Australia.