Western Australia Skilled Migration Program for 2021- 2022, is a great option if you are looking to migrate to Australia or transition to a permanent visa. Like any other state and territory in Australia, you first need to be nominated by a state before you are able to apply for the subclass 190 visa.
The Government of Western Australia nominates eligible migrants for the Skilled Nominated and Regional (Provisional) Skilled Nominated visa categories. To be eligible for the nomination you would first need to meet the minimum requirements. In addition to that after you have received your invitation, you would still need to comply with certain rules to be awarded the visa by the Department of Home Affairs.
The rules you must comply with are as follow:
- You need to satisfy the border rules at the time of application. If you are moving from another state or territory to Western Australia (WA), there are certain rules that apply as a part of WA’s controlled border arrangement. Therefore, you need to make sure that you are aware of the rules and you are obliging those at the time of move. More information on WA’s controlled border arrangements can be found here.
- The WA Migration Services processes the nominations on behalf of the State Government. Hence, after you have arrived in WA, you would need to register your arrival with them. Registration information can be found here.
- You need to have enough funds to cover you and all of your dependents for a minimum of three months. You must take into account the settlement costs and the living expenses to budget your fund. More information is provided in the latter sections.
- After you have arrived in WA, you have to live and work here for a minimum of two years.
- You are also required to complete a settlement survey every six months for this two-year period.
Application Streams for Western Australia Skilled Migration
So nominations for WA can be applied under two streams.
- Stream 1 (General stream): It has been currently divided into Schedule 1 and Schedule 2 occupations.
- Stream 2 (Graduate stream)
You need to match your current skills to see which stream better fits you. Once you are certain about the stream, you can apply for nomination under that stream. Do note that it’s a very important phase of your application as any wrong decision on your part might lead to an unsuccessful application.
In addition to that you must keep in mind that the window of application portal for nominations are only open for a certain time, thus, if you are under time constraint (i.e. you current visa is coming to an end soon) you must prepare ahead of time so that you are not missing out of any important deadlines. Furthermore, ensure that you are selecting the right category and submitting the correct documents to prevent any delay or invitation rejection from common human errors.
You can check what stream you can apply for based on the occupation you wish to be nominated under. The WA’s occupation list can be found here. This occupation list also identifies if you can apply for regional areas or not.
Western Australia Skilled Migration Visa Options
Depending on the occupation identified, you may be eligible for the WA State nomination using one of the following visa subclasses:
- Skilled Nominated Visa (Subclass 190)
- Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) Visa (Subclass 491)
Below is a list of common criteria that you need to fulfill to apply for nominations under either of the streams.
- Currently Reside in Australia
- To be eligible for application you are required to be already living in Australia at the time of application. You can provide any one of the following documents as a proof of your residence in Australia.
- Copy of Lease Agreement.
- Your Utility Bill.
- However, if you are subject to a section 48 bar, in that case unfortunately you are automatically not eligible for WA state invitation.
- As a part of your application, you need to show that you meet the minimum English Proficiency required for your nominated occupation, according to the ANZSCO list.
- Please kindly visit the Australian Bureau of Statistics website for information on ANZSCO codes.
- However, if you are a passport holder from any of these countries- the United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, the United States of America or Ireland- you don’t have to provide an English proficiency certificate.
- Sufficient Settlement Fund
- If you are currently living outside of WA, you are required to prove that you have enough funds to cover your settlement cost and living cost for a minimum of three months.
- As a rule of thumb you should at least have following amounts:
- AUD 20,000 for a single person
- AUD 30,000 for a couple
- AUD 5,000 for every additional dependent.
- You can provide your bank statements or papers on personal asset valuations to show you have access to the minimum fund.
- Occupations in Regional Australia
- If you are looking to be nominated in an occupation in regional Western Australia, then that occupation first needs to be designated as “regional Western Australia only” in the General and Graduate stream occupation list for you to be able to apply for that nomination.
Requirements for General Stream
- For Schedule 1, you need to show that you have a minimum of 1 year work experience in the occupation you are seeking to be nominated for.
- For Schedule 2, you don’t have to show that you have any previous work experience. However, you are required to provide a genuine job offer in WA for the occupation that you are applying to be nominated for.
- You need to be able to claim a minimum of 5 points for work experience through your expression of interest lodged on SkillSelect. In order to achieve that you need to have a minimum of following achievements.
- Over the past 10 years , you have a 1-year work experience in Australia in the nominated occupation or closely related field.
- Or, over the past 10 years you have worked for a minimum of 3-years overseas work experience in the nominated occupation or closely related field.
- You can only count the work experiences gained post-qualification, needs to be a paid employment, where you need to have worked for a minimum of 20 hours per week.
- You are required to have a contract of full-time employment in WA in the nominated occupations or its closely related field.
- The contract should show at least a 12 month employment tenure from the date of your application.
- The contract should clearly state your employer details, job description, job title and related ANZSCO code, and all the terms and conditions of the employment.
- In addition to the above, the contract must be signed and dated by both the employer and employee. However, do note that the contract can only be drafted by the employer, not the employee.
- Full time employment is defined as an average of at least 35 hours work per week. You can also provide two contracts of employment to make up the 35 hours.
- You will need to provide a copy of your contract as part of the State nomination application and it must be provided as one document.
- Do note that any employment contracts submitted by an independent contractor or for self-employment do not meet the above requirements and are not suitable to apply for WA State nomination.
Requirements for Graduate Stream
- In order to qualify for nomination under this steam, you need to show that you have gained any one of the following qualifications from an accredited educational institution in Western Australia.
- It may include a PhD, Masters degree, Bachelor degree or other higher degrees (such as- Bachelor Honours Degree, Graduate Certificate or Graduate Diploma).
- You can also include any vocational education and training (VET) qualification at a Certificate lll level or higher.
- Your study period needs to be for a minimum of 2 years. It has to be a full-time and face-to- face education (do note that due to Covid-19 there has been a relaxation of the face-to-face requirement).
- In case your degree is less than 2 years, you are also able to use different qualifications in order to make up for the two years.
- The education institution that you are seeking to gain the qualification from has to be registered as the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA), and it needs to be registered with the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS).
- If you aren’t sure how to find a WA accredited educational institution, then we recommend that you visit this website, which lists out all the WA accredited educational institutions.
- At the time of making the visa application, you would need to be able to provide adequate evidence as a part of the completion of your WA study requirements. You can provide any or most of the following documents:
- The award certificate
- A complete record of your results, this may include your transcripts or a statement of attainment, which clearly demonstrate that a full-time study length of at least two years.
- You can also include a letter from the accredited educational institution that confirms your course of study, mode of study, duration of study and the completion date. In case you have studied multiple couple courses, you would need to provide a separate letter from all of the institutions you studied at.
- Work Experience/ Contract of Employment
- You need to have a minimum of 6 months work experience or a 6-month work contract in your nominated occupation or a closely related field.
- If you are using Work Experience at the time of application, ensure that you are adding the following information on your expression of interest (EOI) lodged on SkillSelect.
- Work experience was gained after you have completed your qualification.
- It was/is a paid employment.
- You need to have worked for a minimum of 20 hours per week.
- It’s an employment in your nominated occupation or closely related field.
- If you are using a contract of employment, you must include the following in your EOI.
- You have a minimum of 6 months remaining for your tenure from the date of your application for the State nomination.
- In case you haven’t started working yet, you need to start within 3 months of your application.
- It’s an employment in your nominated occupation or closely related field.
- It needs to be a full-time employment, i.e. 35 hours of work per week, in Western Australia.
- If you happen to be a sole trader, then do note that you will not be able to apply for nomination under this stream using a contract of employment drafted by you as a sole trader.
- For more information on fair contracts, we recommend that you visit: Fair Work Ombudsman website to know more about Independent Contractors and Employment contracts, and Employment Agreements outlined by Austrade.
After you have carefully conducted a personal evaluation to determine whether you meet most of the minimum requirements for one or more of the streams for state nominations, you can move on to the next section.
How to Apply for WA State Nomination
To make the process easy for you, we have listed out the application process in a few steps. However, do note that easy of the steps have a certain degree of complexity and we recommend seeking a third party help to help you with the application process.
- SkillSelect: You need to login to SkillSelect. There’s where you lodge your Expression of Interest (EOI).
- EOI: Your EOI is the most significant and fundamental document of your application. The whole outcome of your application substantially rests upon your EOI. Therefore, you need to spend considerable time and effort drafting a great EOI. Your EOI needs to include the following information:
- Clearly state that you are seeking a state nomination from Western Australia; in case you are seeking nomination from other states or territories do make sure to correctly select that.
- You must indicate that your current residence is in Australia.
- You need a minimum of 65 points in the Department of Home Affairs points test.
- Adding your skills assessment evidence for the occupation you are seeking to be nominated under.
- You are applying under the Graduate stream, you would need to add the evidence of WA study evidence to your EOI.
- Evidence of your English language proficiency (do note it’s not applicable for a certain group of passport holders, check above).
- Clearly state that you are below the age of 45.
- Appropriate evidence of work experience and/ employment contracts.
- WA Migration Services: Once you have submitted your EOI on SkillSelect, WA Migration Services will be reviewing them.
- If you qualify based on the ranking system, then you would receive an email with a link to the State nomination application form. After you have received that email, you have 28 days to complete that application.
- This is where you are also needed to provide all the documents to demonstrate that you meet the state nomination criteria.
- You are also required to pay a non-refundable application fee of AUD200.
- Outcome: If your application returns successful, you will be nominated by WA Migration Services on the SkillSelect, and you will also receive an automatic invitation from the Department of Home Affairs to lodge your visa application. If your application is successful, you would need to follow the rules mentioned at the beginning of this article.
It is very important for you to ensure that you are not providing any incorrect or misleading information as a part of your application. At any point after you have submitted your EOI for visa application if your circumstances have altered you must notify the respective authority. Do note that may alter your EOI point score. In the adverse event that your EOI point score falls and you feel that’s unjustified, you can add further appropriate evidence to redeem that point.
As we have already discussed previously, you need to be vigilant and mindful of the invitation round deadlines. More information on WA’s invitation round deadlines and requirements can be found here. We understand that this whole application process can be very tricky for you to handle by yourself, thus we do recommend that you seek professional advice to help you with the application process.
At Path Migration, we have dealt with many applications for state nominations and have always had a successful application. We take the time to carefully go through our clients’ documents and personal circumstances so that we are able to put forward an application that gives you the best chance of success.
Not only have we helped with applications for current students and recent graduates, but we have also assisted set up businesses in Australia for offshore applicants. We have also had a good many experiences with skilled individuals seeking permanent residency by highlighting how their work experiences are so well related to their current occupation and the occupation nominated.
If you are someone who is actively looking for permanent residency in Australia and would like professional consultation regarding your personal situation then do not hesitate to contact us. At Path Migration, we have a wonderful team of immigration lawyers who are highly experienced and specializes in migration law. To book your personalised consultation please contact us or email directly to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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