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Points Test for Certain Skilled Migration Visas

On the 1st July 2011  Chris Bowen, Minister for Immigration and Citizenship acting under Migration Regulations 1994 brings into effect a new points test designed to be of economic benefit for Australia.  In other words it is designed to encourage the best and brightest skilled migrants able to make a positive contribution to Australia's growth and development.  The pass mark which is the total amount of points needed to be eligible for grant of a visa is set at 65 points.  To do this the new points test addresses four main points:

1. Better and more realistic English levels 

The threshold or base level for each skilled occupation has been reduced to a score of 6 in the English Language Testing System  (IELTS) test's four components.  This is referred to as "Competent English".  However, no points will be awarded for a score of 6 in each of the four components.

"Proficient English" or a score of 7 in each component of the IELTS test will gain you 10 points in the new points test.
"Superior English" or a score of 8 in each component of the IELTS will gain you  20 points.

Don't forget if you have only a score of 6 points, you will gain no points.  You will have to gain those points elsewhere.  Your age may help.  The younger you are, the more points you will attract.
 
2. More realistic age levels

Previously the age limit for skilled migration was 45 years.  This has now been raised to 49 years.  You`must  submit your application before your 50th birthday.  However,  no points will be awarded for age if you are between 45 and 49 years of age.  If you are between 18 and 24 years of age you will attract 25 points.  The number of points you attract will diminish as your age increases.  Although your score will be less as you become older, you may still be able to make up the difference with your employment record.  The longer you have worked in your nominated skilled profession, the more points you will gain.

3.  Applicable and more realistic employment level

The Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) now considers 20 hours per week to cover employment in a skilled profession.  You no longer need to be in full time employment.  However, you must have been employed in your nominated profession or a profession closely related for a specified time. 

For overseas applicants, minimum 3 years employment attracts 5 points, minimum 5 years employment is 10 points and minimum 8 years employments is 15 points.  Applicants that have worked in Australia for minimum 1 year employment attracts 5 points, minimum 3 years employment is 10 points, minimum 5 years employment is 15 points and minimum 8 years is 20 points.

A closely related profession is not a profession that you think may be closely related.  Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO) classifies occupations and professions into unit groups according to similarity of work/duties, education qualifications, etc.  Your related occupation/profession must be within 1 unit group of your nominated occupation/profession.

4.  Education qualification

Points can only be awarded for your highest qualifications.  For example, if you have a Doctorate Degree and a Bachelor Degree, then only the Doctorate Degree will attract points.   If you have more than one Bachelor Degree, then only the one that applies into your nominated profession will attract points.

A Doctorate Degree will attract 20 points, Bachelor Degree will attract 15 points, an Australian Diploma or Trade qualification will attract 10 points and an overseas award or Trade qualification recognised by a relevant assessing body will attract 10 points.

If you have a spouse/partner with certain age, educational and work criteria then further points will be gained.
If you have State and Territory nomination and designated area sponsorship then further points will be gained.

For full information regarding the new points test click here

(This news article is an extract from the DIAC website and Fact Sheet)

For more information, please go to our free, no obligation Assessment Forms.  Our principal will be pleased to assess your qualifications should you wish to migrate to Australia.

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Registered Migration Agent Olivia Fuente MMIA MMA JP

Migration Agent Registration Number 0801294

Tel/Fax: +61 2 4359 3076