Including Dependents On Your Visa Application
The Australian Government has introduced far reaching changes to the definition of Member of the Family Unit (MoFU) for the purpose of most visa applications. There are now significant limitations on the class of persons that can be considered part of MoFU and hence be included in a visa application.
Character Assessment of Australian Sponsors of Partner Visa Applications
From 18 November 2016, Australian citizen and permanent resident Sponsors of Partner Visa and Prospective Marriage Visa applications (“a partner visa”), are subject to character testing. In line with current Australian Government strategies to reduce family violence in the Australian community, the new provisions have been introduced to prevent Australians who have committed a relevant offence from being able to sponsor someone for a partner visa.
New priority processing for skilled migration applications

The contents of this article are correct as at 26 January 2009.

In January 2009, the Department of Immigration announced new priority processing for general skilled migration applications.

It appears that general skilled migration applications will now be processed in the following order of priority:

1. Applications sponsored by a state or territory government
2. Applications for skilled occupations on the new Critical Skills List
3. Applications for skilled occupations on the Migration Occupation in Demand List (MODL)
4. All other skilled occupations

As at mid January 2009, the Department appears to have ceased processing applications in categories 3 and 4.

It seems that the Department will endeavour to work through a backlog of lodged applications coming under categories 1 and 2, before it resumes processing categories 3 and 4.

If your application falls into categories 3 and 4, it is likely that processing of your application will be delayed.

It is unclear at this stage how much additional time this will add to visa processing of categories 3 and 4.

It should be noted that the new priority processing does not affect the prospects (ie merits or chances of success) of a permanent residency application. Rather the new priority processing only impacts on how long it will take DIAC to process the application.

As further updates become available, we will post articles on our website.

Within the next month, we will commence publishing on our website a free monthly newsletter on developments and other issues in General Skilled Migration. Free subscription will be available.

Separately, if you would like us to assess your chances, in writing and for free, under General Skilled migration, please click here to complete the questionnaire.