Visas And Immigration: Navigating The Relocation Process From The UK To Australia

Australia is one of the most popular relocation destinations for British expats, with over 19,000 UK nationals immigrating from the UK to Australia in 2023. And who can blame them? With its vibrant culture, thriving economy, stunning landscapes, and modern cities, Australia offers a great way of life for both individuals and families looking to make the move. However, Australia does have a strict immigration and visa system to navigate before you can legally live and work there. In this article, we’ll look at the key steps and requirements for British nationals to relocate to Australia.

Moving To Australia Guide

What Visa Do You Need?

Australia offers immigrants a bewildering variety of visa options, depending on your needs and circumstances, as well as your work background and qualifications. Some of the main ones are:

  • Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186) – if you already have an Australian employer or an international employer with a registered premises in Australia, your employer could nominate your visa. This is one of the easiest ways to immigrate to Australia.

  • Skilled Nominated Visa (subclass 190) – this visa category requires a nomination by an Australian state or territory government agency, e.g. as part of a government initiative to attract skilled workers into a particular part of the country.

  • Skilled Independent Visa (subclass 189) – if you don’t have sponsorship available from a government agency, employer, or family member, you will need to apply for a skilled Independent visa. The success of your application will be based on your points.

  • Partner Visa – if your spouse or civil partner is an Australian citizen, permanent resident, or (in some circumstances) a New Zealand citizen, you may be able to apply for a partner visa.

What Is The Eligibility Criteria And How Do I Apply?

Each visa subclass has specific eligibility criteria, including age, English language proficiency, and occupation. However, the general application process for each visa involves the following steps:

  • Step One: assess your eligibility against the specific visa requirements – i.e., do you have sponsorship or do you need to apply independently.

  • Step Two: gather the documentation required, including proof of identity, marriage certificate (if applicable), your qualifications, work experience, and references. Documentation may include passport sized photographs, passport or travel documents, your birth certificate, police clearance certificate, and evidence of English language proficiency.

  • Step Three: you will now need to submit an Expression of Interest (POI) through the Australian government’s SkillSelect online service.

  • Step Four: if you meet the eligibility criteria, you should receive an invitation to apply (ITA) for a visa.

  • Step Five: Lodge your visa application, along with the requested evidence and documentation, according to the instructions in your ITA. Proficiency in English is a critical requirement for most Australian visas, and you may need to take a language test as part of your application process – e.g. the IELTS – to demonstrate your language skills.

What Is The Points-Based System For Skilled Migration?

Australian independent visas use a points-based system to align immigration with the skills needs of the local economy. Points are accrued for education and work experience (either in Australia or overseas), as well as English language ability. Age is also a factor, with points allocated for the age group you fall into, from 18 to 45 (the most ‘desirable’ age bracket is 25-33 years old). Additional points are available if you have completed university or specialist education in Australia. The Australian government’s Points table for Skilled Independent Visas provides more information about points allocation for different categories. You generally need a minimum of 65 points to be invited to apply for a visa.

How Long Does The Process Take?

This can vary from a few months to over a year, depending on the type of visa you want, individual circumstances, and the workload of the immigration office processing your claim.

Private Relocation Services: Download Our Free Guide

If you are considering relocating to Australia from the UK and would like to find out more about our private relocation services, please claim a free copy of our downloadable Guide To Moving To Australia.

Moving To Australia Guide

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