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10 Benefits of Being an Australian Permanent Resident (PR)

Benefits Australian PR

Many individuals dream of becoming a Permanent Resident in Australia, the famous "Australian PR," which allows people to live and work in Australia, along with a host of other government benefits. Today, we'll explore the top ten benefits that come with holding permanent residency (PR) in Australia.

1. Access to Medicare:

Enjoy the peace of mind that comes with having access to Australia's universal healthcare services, Medicare. Receive medical services from doctors, specialists, public hospitals, and other healthcare benefits with professionals either for free or at a lower cost.

2. Full Working Rights:

As a permanent resident, you have the freedom to work in any job for any employer without restrictions.

In 2022, Australia had the third highest monthly average pay in the world of US$ 4218 per month.

There are some exceptions to what jobs you can get. For example, specific organizations such as the Australian Public Service or Defence Forces may need you to be an Australian citizen for you to work for them.

3. Cheaper Higher Education:

Permanent residents have access to domestic fees, cheaper than international students.

4. Childcare and Education Subsidies:

PR holders can be eligible for childcare subsidies. The Australian Government pays subsidies directly to your childcare provider to reduce the fees you pay for childcare.

Permanent residents also have access to government schools where children can get free education up to the 12th grade. There are some limited admin fees associated with public schools.

5. Social Security Benefits and Centrelink:

Permanent residents of at least two years will in some circumstances be eligible for Centrelink. Centrelink offers social welfare and may be available to you with aid in relation to sickness, unemployment, and study, with potential extensions to family members.

6. Buy property and get a grant:

When you have a permanent residence, you can access a $10,000 grant towards purchasing your first apartment, house unit, or townhouse, simplifying the process of homeownership compared to temporary visa holders.

This contrasts with temporary visa holders who have to get Foreign Investment Review Board approval or FIRB approval and pay a large fee to be able to buy property in Australia.

7. Live and Work in New Zealand:

With Australian permanent residency, you can live, work, and visit New Zealand. You can also buy a house in New Zealand while an Australian permanent resident.

8. Sponsor Family Members:

As a permanent visa holder, you may be able to sponsor your family members such as sisters, brothers, parents-in-law, and others for certain types of visas. Usually short-term visas like visitor visas.

9. Pathway to Australian Citizenship:

To apply for Australian citizenship normally you need to have been a permanent resident for at least one year and to have lived in Australia for at least four years before applying. As an Australian citizen, you're able to do several things, including voting in elections, having an Australian Passport, getting certain jobs, and serving in the defence force.

Children born to permanent residents in Australia are automatically granted citizenship.

10. Live in Australia and have the Freedom to Travel Overseas:

The grant of permanent residency means you will have a permanent visa and can live in Australia permanently without a time limit while you're in Australia.

You will have an initial 5-year grant period travel facility. If you meet the residency requirements, then you can extend the ability to travel through applying for another visa called a ‘Resident Return Visa’ to re-enter Australia. Some people keep renewing their PR and extending their unrestricted travel for the rest of their lives.

Becoming an Australian permanent resident opens a world of opportunities and benefits, providing security, access to essential services, and the chance to build a prosperous future for you and your family.

Need Help Applying for an Australian Visa?

Several visa options can lead to Australian Permanent Residency. If you need assistance applying for visas such as Employer-sponsored, Partner Visa, Global Talent Visa, Skills Visas, or any other visa types, please contact us. As one of Australia's largest immigration law firms, our migration lawyers and migration agents can guide you through the process and permanent visa application.

Based in Adelaide South Australia, we provide Australian Immigration advice to people and businesses from all over the world.

You can book an appointment online or call us at (+61) 8 8351 9956.

Click here to check the skilled occupation lists and visa processing times.  

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Fact checking the ‘axing’ of the ‘Golden Visa’ - Business Innovation and Investment Program (BIIP) visa

On 22 January 2023, an Australian newspaper, The Australian, published an article entitled, Quiet chop for ‘golden visa’ scheme”.

The Australian article by Stephen Rice contains inaccuracies. This is article aims to set out the facts and correct the misinformation contained in The Australian article.


Has the Labor Government axed the Business Innovation and Investment Program (BIIP) visa?

 No, the Australian Government has not axed the BIIP visas.


Migration Review and Migration Strategy

A review of the Australian migration system was conducted in 2022-2023, and the Migration Report (the ‘Report’) was released on 21 March 2023.

One of the possible reform directions arrived at by the reviewers is “Better target permanent skilled visas to maximise economic outcomes and remain internationally competitive”.  One of the measures identified to support the possible reform directions is to:

Revisit the allocation of places across the permanent skilled program. In particular, reconsider the size and role of the Business Innovation and Investment Program (BIIP), noting more positive outcomes from the Significant Investor Visa. Consider how to manage the allocation of places to state and territory nominated and regional visas, including possible consolidation of these programs.  [1]

During her address to the National Press Club on 27 April 2023, the Minister for Home Affairs, The Hon Clare O’Neil MP, was asked whether the business investment visa subclass 188 A, B, C be removed in the future.  The Hon Minister replied that, “We haven’t said that we will abolish those programs. What we have said is that they need a radical restructure as part of the work that we’re doing and I think this needs to be folded into the broader conversation about highly skilled people who we see as creating the future jobs for Australians and now how we manage them in. It’s not just about what’s called BIV and SIV. This is just the world of acronyms that I live in! It is not just about BIV and SIV. It is about the whole question of that, really quite – drivers of economic growth and how we should think about bringing those people into our country.” [2]

Australia’s Migration Strategy was released to the public in December 2023. This Migration Strategy is based on the findings of the Migration Review. The Strategy notes that:

The Migration Review flagged the opportunity to draw on the relative strength of the Significant Investor stream to design a visa product more sharply targeted to select migrants who can drive innovative investments in sectors of national importance or play a valuable role in the venture capital industry.

The Migration Strategy further mentions as an area for future reform:

A new Talent and Innovation visa could create a single, streamlined pathway to attract relatively small numbers of highly talented migrants to Australia, such as high performing entrepreneurs, major investors and global researchers.

As a result of the review, or the current financial year (2023-2024), the Australian government has reduced the allocations for the BIIP program (see Figure 1) and has not allocated these places to any Australian state or territory in order to process the applications on hand.

There has been no ‘axing’ just a pause while the review of the program is being conducted. All indicators point to the fact that the Government will be continue offering visa to highly talented migrants to Australia, such as high performing entrepreneurs, major investors.

Business Innovation and Investmet 

Does the business visa program make up a quarter of Australia’s migration allocations?

The first sentence of the article states that “[a] business visa program which makes up a quarter of all the nation’s migration allocations has been quietly axed by Labor ….”   The truth is that in 2022-2023, the Business Innovation and Investment Program (BIIP) was allocated 5,000 places out of 195,000, or 2.56% and for this financial year, 1,900 places out of 190,000 places or 1%. Hardly “a quarter”. 

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Australian Student Visa 2024: Enrolment Cancellations and Visa Refusals

With enrolment cancellations by institutions and rising refusals, international students have started to feel the impact of the Australian migration strategy released in December 2023, aimed at reducing migration levels.

Universities Cancelling Course Offers for Students

Recent news has revealed that some Australian universities are cancelling enrolment offers to international students. Several universities have taken the extreme step of writing to students whom they had approved but who were still waiting for their visas to be granted, requesting they cancel their enrolment. This is devastating for those who have an offer and are already envisioning their course in Australia. This has already affected many international students, causing frustration and disappointment with the sudden decision.

Why Are Universities Cancelling International Student Offers?

Some institutions have chosen to limit the countries from which they will accept applications to increase their visa approval rate. There are concerns from some universities that they might no longer be classified as low-risk entities by the Department of Home Affairs, affecting their standing and operations.

The migration strategy released in December 2023 included several recommendations for international students, such as increased funding for visa integrity, higher English language requirements, and more rigorous scrutiny of lower-quality education providers by ranking them based on their risk level.

It appears that universities are cancelling admission offers to safeguard their reputation and avoid a high number of visa rejections.

Student Visa Refusals Australia

Increase in Student Visa Refusal Rates for Some Countries and Some Institutions

There has been a significant increase in the number of visa refusals, which is expected to rise further in the second half of 2024.

High refusal rates: Over the last 15 years, student visa application approval rates have consistently been above 90%. However, recent government figures reveal a decline to 82% last year, with the approval rate for vocational education even lower, dropping to 70% in the last six months of 2023.

Which countries have higher refusal rates? According to a report by The Australian Financial Review on January 30, 2024, there was a significant decrease in student visa approval rates for applicants from some countries, such as India with a reduction from 73% to 42%, Pakistan from 64% to 30%, the Philippines from 81% to 36%, and Nigeria from 71% to 29% over four months from June to September 2023, as noted by Craig Mackey of IDP Education Australia, an international education company offering student placement in Australia.

Ian Aird, CEO of English Australia, another international education company, mentioned that in October 2023, student visa grants from Colombia were down by 34.79% over the same comparison period in 2022. Approval rates for visa applications for the education provider English Australia, from Thailand and Brazil in October 2024 compared to the year before, also experienced declines, with Thailand's rate dropping by 89.99% and Brazil's by 46.82%.

However, approval rates for countries such as South Korea, China, Singapore, and Taiwan were at 90% or higher, possibly due to financial capacity and genuineness of intention to study.

CoE Cancellations Australia 2024

Why Are There Higher Rates of Student Visa Refusal?

The government aims to reduce the net overseas migration number, from 510,000 in the last year to 375,000 this current year, and then to 250,000, which is regarded as the "normal" level. Much of the reductions will be in student visas.


The student refusals are mostly based on the Genuine Temporary Entrant Criteria (GTE). In many cases, the GTE rejection seems to hinge on the economic status of the student's home country, rather than the individual's qualifications or demonstrated intent to study at the institution.

Unfortunately, it is getting tougher both for education providers and with Home Affairs. If you need any assistance, please contact us.

Do you need help with an Australian visa application?

Our team of experienced Immigration Lawyers and Migration Agents look forward to assisting you with your visa application.

Based in Adelaide, South Australia, we provide Australian Immigration advice to people and businesses from all over the world.

You can book an appointment online or call us at (+61) 8 8351 9956.


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How to apply for an onshore and offshore Partner Visa in 2024

Partner Visa

If you are thinking about applying for a partner visa in 2024, it is helpful to understand the Australian Department of Home Affairs’ (Department) current requirements and how it assesses a partner visa application.

Partner Visa Types and Stages

You can apply for a partner visa either onshore or offshore. Partner visa applications have two stages. The first stage is a temporary partner visa and the second stage is a permanent partner visa. Partner visa applicants become eligible to apply for the permanent stage of the visa two years after the date of application for the first stage of the partner visa.

If you are an applicant inside Australia, you will need to apply for a temporary onshore partner visa (Subclass 820) followed by a permanent partner visa (Subclass 801). Applicants applying outside of Australia will need to apply for a temporary offshore partner visa (Subclass 309) followed by a permanent partner visa (Subclass 100).

Requirements for the applicant

To be eligible to apply for a Partner Visa in Australia, an applicant must be in a genuine and ongoing married or de facto relationship with an eligible Australian citizen, permanent resident, or eligible New Zealand citizen. You must also meet all the other requirements for the visa including health, and character. This typically involves providing police clearance certificates and undergoing medical examinations, if required.

Book an appointment if you need assistance. 

Requirements for the sponsor

A sponsor for a partner visa must be an Australian citizen, permanent resident, or eligible New Zealand citizen. The sponsor must also meet the age, health, and character, and financial requirements. There are some limitations on sponsors, for example sponsors are barred from sponsoring more than one partner within a five-year period. For more information about these limitations, please contact us to speak to a Lawyer or Registered Migration Agent.

Requirements for the relationship

The Department needs to be satisfied that the relationship between the visa applicant and the sponsor is “genuine and continuing” therefore you will need to provide substantial proof of your married or de facto relationship. The Department considers the following four pillars in assessing whether a relationship is genuine and continuing:

  1. Mutual commitment – this looks at the level of commitment between the couple and considers the duration of the relationship, length of time they have lived together, level of support they provide to each other and the couple’s future plans
  2. Financial aspects of the relationship – this can include evidence of any joint ownership of property or assets (e.g. house, car, shares), joint liabilities (e.g. home loan or a rental property in both parties’) or shared finances like a joint bank account
  3. Nature of the household – this can include a joint responsibility for the care and support of children, joint living arrangements and shared housework responsibilities
  4. Social aspects of the relationship – this looks at whether the relationship is known and supported by the couple’s friends and family which can be shown through statements, support letter or photos. It can also include evidence of involvement in social activities together, joint travel, or joint invitations or attendance at social events

While it is important and helpful to provide evidence of all the four criteria in a partner visa application, the Department policy suggests that generally a relationship is assessed overall and takes into consideration all factors within the relationship.

Processing times

Partner visa processing times vary based on the subclass of the partner visa you are applying for and the specific circumstances of each application. Currently, onshore partner visa applications are being processed within 5 months to 3 years. Offshore partner visa applications are being processed within 11 months to 2 years. It is important to understand that these processing times may change. They are provided as a guideline only and some applications may fall outside of these processing times.

You can keep track of the Department’s processing times here


The costs associated with a partner visa application in Australia can vary depending on the specific subclass of visa you are applying for. Additionally, the fees are subject to change, so it's important to check the latest information on the Department website or consult with us for the most accurate details.

Below is a breakdown of some of the costs you may need to consider:

  1. Visa Application Charge (VAC): this is the main fee charged by the Department for processing your visa application. Currently, the VAC for an onshore and offshore partner visa is $8,850. This fee is for the main applicant only and excludes any additional or secondary applicants. If there are any secondary applicants for example, any eligible children then the Department charges an additional $4,430 for each additional application aged 18 and over and $2,215 for each additional applicant aged under 18.
  2. Biometrics: If biometrics (such as fingerprints and a photograph) are required as part of the application process, there may be additional costs associated with this. The cost for biometrics varies depending on the location where they are collected.
  3. Health Checks: You and your partner may need to undergo medical examinations as part of the visa application process. The cost of these examinations varies depending on the medical provider and the specific tests required.
  1. Police Clearance Certificates: You may need to obtain police clearance certificates from any country where you have lived for 12 months or more in the last 10 years. The cost of obtaining these certificates varies by country.
  2. Translation and Certification of Documents: If any of your supporting documents are not in English, you may need to have them translated by a certified translator. You will need to take into account any costs associated with translating your documents, if required.
  3. Professional Legal Fees: You may wish to engage a Lawyer or Registered Migration Agent to assist you with your partner visa application. The professional legal fees vary based on each legal service provider. Please feel free to contact us if you need legal assistance with your partner visa application or would like to discuss our fees for assisting with your application.
  1. Other Miscellaneous Costs: Depending on your specific circumstances, there may be other costs associated with the application process, such as postage fees, travel expenses for interviews or appointments, and obtaining additional supporting documents.

For more information on partner visa, including the documents you need and common reasons for refusal, see Everything You Need to Know About the Australian Partner Visa.

Do you need help with an Australian visa application?

Our team of experienced Immigration Lawyers and Migration Agents look forward to assisting you with your Partner Visa application.

Based in Adelaide, South Australia, we provide Australian Immigration advice to people and businesses from all over the world.

You can book an appointment online or call us at (+61) 8 8351 9956.


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Regional Migration: Australia's Top Priority 2024

In early 2023, regional migration visas in Australia were under a cloud of uncertainty. The Parkinson Report Migration, released in March 2023, failed to offer any guidance or support for regional migration options.

The final report suggests a recalibration of the skilled points test and even proposes the removal of points for regional study. It states, “In conjunction with this measure, existing regional concessions in mainstream permanent phases, such as additional points for regional study, could be removed to ensure those programs are strongly focused on selecting migrants who will best meet national economic objectives.”

Additionally, state nomination applications in Australia across all states were reduced by 70% from July 1, 2023, marking a significant downturn in the 2023-24 financial year.

However, early 2024 has seen positive developments in regional migration policy.

Migration Policy Developments 2024

Regional employer-sponsored nominations visas such as 482, 186, 494, and DAMAs are now the top priority in ministerial processing directives. This means they are processed above all others, including professions in teaching and health that were previously given high priority.

This shift demonstrates the Federal Government is encouraging migration to regional areas.

The new Skills in Demand Visa Australia includes an "Essential Skills" category visa for lower-skilled occupations, such as carers, with potential salaries below A$70,000. These visas aim to supply workers to regional areas for both caregiving and agricultural roles.

For the 2024 to 2025 financial year, skilled points visas, including the 189, 190, and 491 visas, will remain unchanged. The 491 Visa, designed for regional areas, continues to be available, dispelling rumors of its abolition in the Migration Review.

Click here to read more about the Skilled Work Regional 491 Visa.

Why is regional migration regaining favour?

Several factors are at play, including a strong demand from industries and communities in regional Australia for migrants. Furthermore, the housing crisis has prompted the federal government to encourage migration away from Australia's largest cities, Melbourne, Sydney, and Brisbane.

How can Work Visa Lawyers help?

Our team of experienced Immigration Lawyers and Migration Agents look forward to assisting you with your potential application(s).

Based in Adelaide, South Australia, we provide Australian Immigration advice to people and businesses from all over the world.

For visa application assistance in Australia, you can book an appointment online or call us at (+61) 8 8351 9956.

Adelaide SA


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The simplest Australian Work Visa to get from offshore – The Temporary Work 400 Visa!

Embarking on a short-term professional venture in Australia? The Temporary Work Short Stay Specialist Visa Subclass 400 might be your golden ticket for those looking to work in Australia on a short-term basis. In today's blog, we'll explore the key aspects of this visa, its features, eligibility criteria, and why employers find it particularly appealing.

The Subclass 400 visa is designed for individuals who wish to work on specific, short-term projects in Australia. This could include activities such as specialized work, or projects related to critical industries.

It's a great option for those who need to be in the country for a short duration and have a specific skill set.

Find more information about the Temporary Work Short Stay Specialist Visa Subclass 400 here.

Key Features of the Subclass 400 visa:

Short-Term Duration: This visa is typically granted for a short period, usually up to three months but can be up to 6 months depending on the circumstances. Your stay in Australia commences once you arrive and does not restart each time you travel.

Eligibility criteria:

Specific Work or Activity:

You must be invited to participate in a specific project, event, or activity, and your stay is limited to the duration needed for that particular task.

The work must be:

  • Highly specialised.
  • Non-ongoing work.
  • Will not disadvantage Australian workers.
  • Not for the entertainment industry – not acting, directing, performing, etc.

Specific work: While you're on this visa, you can work on the specific project or activity outlined in your visa application or applying linked to that.

Genuine Temporary Entrant:

You should intend to stay in Australia temporarily and have the means to support yourself during your stay.

Health and Character Requirements:

Like any visa application, you must meet health and character requirements.

Health assessments and police clearance are not commonly required for a 400 visa.

Some will require biometrics.SA Skilled Visa 491190 highly skilled and talented stream South Australia

Why do employers like the 400 visa?

  • There are no sponsorship obligations for this visa.
  • There is no Skilling Australia Fee – SAF – for this visa.
  • The application only has one stage, as compared to longer-duration visas which often have three stages.

The application process for the Subclass 400 visa is relatively straightforward. The processing time varies, but in general, is between 8 to 20 days.

Read more about the 400 visa.

Need Help Applying for a Temporary Work Short Stay Specialist Visa Subclass 400?

Work Visa Lawyers can assist you in applying for a 400 visa. As one of Australia's largest immigration law firms, our professional team can guide you through the process.

Based in Adelaide South Australia, we provide Australian Immigration advice to people and businesses from all over the world.

You can book an appointment online or call us at (+61) 8 8351 9956.


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Moving to Australia: How Can I Bring My Personal Belongings and Furniture to Australia?

PR Visa Granted: Tips and Resources for Bringing Your Personal Items to Australia

After being granted a visa to Australia especially if it is for permanent residency, one of the things that migrants think about is whether they will bring any of their personal belongings that did not or cannot fit in with their allowable airline baggage allowance. Can they take their personal belongings with them when they go to Australia? What they can bring with them? How can they bring their personal effects to Australia? Should they ship their possessions or buy everything in Australia?

Bringing your personal and household effects to Australia can be tricky and may be expensive. There are many requirements and documents to be provided.

Australia has strict laws on biosecurity and quarantine especially those relating to food, plant and animal material. You should also note that there are restrictions on what you can bring into Australia and that permits and fees are required for certain items. The items you shipped may also be subject to  inspection.

Unaccompanied Personal Effects (UPEs)

If you are shipping your household and other personal items to Australia and these items arrive separately to you, these items are referred to as Unaccompanied Personal Effects (UPEs).

UPEs can include the following:

  • clothing and footwear
  • personal hygiene and grooming items
  • furniture
  • appliances
  • sporting equipment, and
  • books[i]

Non-motorised caravans, boats and aircraft can also be considered as UPEs but subject to certain conditions.

Note that items like wood and other timber items may need to be treated before they can be ship to Australia.

What can you not bring to Australia?

The following are the items you cannot bring into Australia as personal effects[ii]:

  • fresh fruit and vegetables
  • live plants, bulbs, tubers, corms, and cuttings
  • prohibited and restricted seeds​
  • unidentified seeds (including spices)
  • khapra beetle high-risk plant products
  • live animals (including pets) that require an import permit
  • biological products including some plant based, herbal medications
  • unprocessed goods of plant or animal origin
  • soiled goods, or goods containing organic residues
  • goods knowingly infested with pests or a disease.

If you are not sure if an item can be brought to Australia you can use the Biosecurity Import Conditions system (BICON)[iii]. The BICON system will let you know whether the item you are planning to bring to Australia:

  • Is permitted
  • Is subject to import conditions
  • requires supporting documentation
  • ​requires treatment
  • needs an import permit

Cargo Ship 1

UPE concession

If you are eligible, you may be able to avail of a UPE concession and your UPEs will be cleared customs control without requiring you to pay:

  • customs duty
  • goods and services tax (GST), or
  • other taxes and charges.

To be eligible for the UPE concession you must:

  • be a passenger or crew member of a ship or aircraft
  • have arrived from a place outside Australia, and
  • depending on the nature of the goods, meet permanent residency requirements

and the goods must be:

  • your personal property
  • suitable and intended for use by you in Australia
  • personally owned and used overseas by you for the specified length of time before your departure for Australia. For example, non-motorised caravans and trailers, and certain boats must be owned and used by you for at least 12 months before your travel to Australia.

You will meet the permanent residency requirements if you:

  • are an Australian citizen
  • hold a permanent visa
  • hold a special category visa. 

Note that there are certain items that are not eligible for the UPE Concession. These include motor vehicles, alcoholic beverages, tobacco, etc.

UPE clearing

Your UPEs would need to be cleared.  You need to provide a completed Unaccompanied Personal Effects Statement (B534 Form). This can be lodged in person (you will be required to under an Evidence of Identity check) or by electronic lodgment through the Integrated Cargo System (ICS).

Fees may be payable and there may be additional charges if the goods shipped needs treatment.

You can hire a reputable customs broker and/or freight forwarding company to help you with this process.

Tips when packing your personal effects:

When preparing your goods for shipping ensure that they are thoroughly cleaned and there are no traces of dirt or any foreign matter. For example, you need to scrub and wash to your shoes, sporting equipment, camping equipment, etc.  Vacuum the carpets, rugs and mats. Make sure the items being shipped are thoroughly cleaned and dry.

The Australian Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry has the following advice when packing your personal belongings for shipping to Australia:

  1. Make a packing list - Have a clear and complete record of everything you are shipping. Label all the boxes and record what is in each box. You also need a description of the items in the box, for example, wooden bed frame, plastic chairs, etc.

Australian authorities would be require this list.

  1. Label and number your boxes.
  2. It is advisable not to use second hand boxes especially if the box had been previously use to carry plant or animal product.
  3. Pack items in groups. Items that potentially pose a biosecurity risk is best packed together to facilitate inspection by the biosecurity officer.
  4. Safely pack your items. For example, wrap sharp objects like knives to prevent injury and do not back flammable items like fireworks or aerosols.


[i] Australian Border Force website, Unaccompanied Personal Effects,

[ii] Australian Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry- Moving to Australia or importing personal effects/household goods :

[iii] Biosecurity Import Conditions system (BICON)

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High Court decision finds indefinite detention is unlawful

In a historic decision, the High Court recently published its unanimous ruling on indefinite immigration detention. The decision was unanimous, by seven high court judges. The case is NZYQ v Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs [2023] HCA 37 (28 November 2023).

The High Court ruled that it is unlawful to detain a person indefinitely, in circumstances where there are no real prospects of removing them from Australia. The case involved a stateless individual to whom Australia owed protection, being not a citizen of any country, and with no available country willing to resettle him.

The court examined sections 189(1) and 196(1) of the Migration Act, finding that they exceeded the Commonwealth's power.

The High Court emphasized that the Executive lacks the authority to impose criminal punishment, which falls under the jurisdiction of the Australian courts. Consequently, the court deemed indefinite detention as a form of punishment beyond the government's constitutional power, making it unlawful.

What are the facts of this case? 

The applicant is a Rohyingya Muslim who arrived in Australia by boat in 2012 and was granted a bridging visa in 2014. Later found guilty of a sexual offense against a child, he was sentenced to 5 years imprisonment. 

During this time, he applied for a Protection visa, and it was found that he is a person Australia owes protection obligations because he has a well-founded fear of persecution. Ultimately the protection visa wasn't granted because of his criminal conviction.  

Decision high court

After being released on parole in 2018, he was taken into immigration detention. In April 2023, he appealed to the High Court arguing his continuing detention was not authorised. 

On 30 May 2023, both parties in this case agreed to 2 very important facts:  

1.  The applicant cannot be removed from Australia.

2.  There is no real prospect of the applicant being removed from Australia in the reasonably foreseeable future.  

The High Court decided that the applicant's detention has been unlawful since 30 May 2023, and ordered his release. 

The applicant is a stateless person, to whom Australia owes protection. He is not a citizen of any country, and no country will resettle him. 

Why is it unlawful? 

According to the Australian Constitution, an unlawful non-citizen can only be kept in immigration detention for a legitimate, non-punitive purpose.  

Indefinitely detaining those who cannot be legally removed from Australia, was said to be punitive (i.e. punishment) rather than for a legitimate purpose.  

The Executive (government departments and ministers) do not have the power to impose criminal punishment. Instead that power rests with the Australian courts. 

The High Court decided that indefinite detention is a form of punishment that goes beyond the government's power and is therefore unlawful.  

What now? 

The Federal Government reacted very quickly in response to this significant decision. Immigration Minister Andrew Giles quickly introduced a Bill, which passed, which imposes strict conditions on Bridging visas granted to those who have been released.  This includes requiring them to always wear a monitoring device, follow a curfew, and report regularly.

As the Federal Government moves to enforce these new laws, legal challenges are anticipated. The High Court is expected to consider and assess the constitutionality of these laws, setting the stage for potential updates and developments in the near future.NZYQ v Minister for Immigration Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs 2023 HCA 37 28 November 2023 1 1


How can Work Visa Lawyers help?

Our team of experienced Immigration Lawyers and Migration Agents look forward to assisting you with your potential visa application(s).

Based in Adelaide, South Australia, we provide Australian Immigration advice to people and businesses from all over the world.

You can book an appointment online or call us at (+61) 8 8351 9956.

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How is ‘high income’ assessed for the Global Talent Visa?

We have assisted (and currently assisting) a number of successful Global Talent Visa (GTV) applicants, and we get a lot of enquiries about it. One of the most frequently asked questions related to their income, i.e, they receive a basic salary and gets awarded company shares or bonuses, or they own the business and receive a minimum salary but receive dividends. Would their salary be assessed as equivalent to or higher than Australia’s Fair Work High Income Threshold (FWHIT)?

This issue was, previously, made more confusing when the Global Talent Visa EOI webform states that "Income includes salary, commissions, allowances, bonuses, investment dividends and other sources of personal income. For foreign income, calculate the Australian dollar amount using current exchange rates."   This has now been changed.

When submitting an Expression of Interest (EOI) for the Global Talent Visa it is important to address that the applicant meets the salary requirement otherwise the EOI will most likely not be successful.

For those not familiar with the Global Talent Visa (subclass 858), it is a visa designed to attract high-performing, highly skilled and talented individuals working in particularly target sectors of Digitech, FinTech, Agri-food and AgTech, Health Industries, Defence, advanced manufacturing and space, Circular Economy, Resources, Energy, Infrastructure and tourism and Education.


Read more about the Global Talent Visa



Ministerial Direction 89, give directions in relation to the processing of the Global Talent visa and gives the highest priority to applications submitted in relation to the above-mentioned sectors and where the primary applicant’s current earnings are an amount equal to or greater than the FWHIT or the applicant has received a job offer from and Australian employer with an annual salary equivalent to or higher than the FWHIT or there is evidence that the applicant is likely to attract a salary equal to or higher than FWHIT.


Australian money


FWHIT is assessed with reference to ‘earnings’ as defined by section 332 of the Fair Work Act 2009 which states:

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All You Need to Know About Working in Australia: Salary, How to Find a Job, Tax Return, and More

Today, we are going to provide you with some basic introductions into working in Australia, such as visas, salary, tax, working hours, holidays, how to get a job in Australia, and more.  

The information is general and it's not legal advice. 

Get a Visa with Work Rights

Ensure you have a valid visa that allows you to work. Note that visitor visas generally do not grant work rights. Many Australian visas do permit you to work with some having restrictions on the number of hours to work. For example, a student visa currently only allows you to work for 48 hours per fortnight in most cases.

Use Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) to check when your visa expires and what conditions your visa has in terms of work rights.

Tax File Number (TFN)

To work in Australia, obtaining a Tax File Number (TFN) is crucial. Your TFN is your number for dealings with the Australian Tax Office. Without it, the tax office may withhold your tax at a higher rate, which is approximately 50%. 

Full-Time, Part-Time, and Casual jobs

Understand the nuances of full-time, part-time, and casual employment. Each comes with its own set of benefits and conditions.

  • Full-time employees work 38 hours per week with benefits like paid annual leave and sick leave.
  • Part-time employees work regular hours but less than full-time, with benefits on a pro-rata basis.
  • Casual employees have irregular hours, no paid sick days or annual leave, and can be terminated at any time.

Awards and Minimum Salary

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