Permanent Resident Visa Australia

June 27, 2024
Myer Lipschitz

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Acquiring a permanent resident visa for Australia provides a pathway to living indefinitely in one of the world’s most dynamic countries. To become a permanent resident, individuals typically need to secure one of several types of visas, such as family-stream, work-stream, or business and investor-stream visas. These visas are contingent on meeting specific eligibility criteria, covering aspects such as skills, family connections, or investment capabilities.

Eligibility requirements for a Permanent Resident Visa in Australia encompass a range of factors. Applicants are assessed on their skills, employment history, and family connections. For skilled migrants, certain professions in high demand may significantly increase their chances of approval. Ensuring compliance with health and character standards is also a fundamental part of the application process.

Permanent residency grants several benefits, including the right to live, work, and study in Australia without restrictions. It also provides the ability to sponsor family members for visas, ensuring a stable foundation in the country.

Migrate to Australia

Our immigration lawyers and registered migration agents in Melbourne will be able to find you the best visa for your unique situation. You’ll be in good hands.

Comparison with Australian Citizenship

While Australian permanent residents enjoy many of the same rights as citizens, there are distinct differences. Permanent residents cannot vote in federal elections or hold certain government positions. Additionally, while both can access Medicare, permanent residents must maintain a valid travel facility to re-enter Australia. In contrast, citizens have an automatic right to return. Furthermore, permanent residents may sponsor family members for residency but do not have the right to obtain an Australian passport.

Benefits of Australian Permanent Residence vs Citizenship

Benefit Permanent Residence Citizenship
Right to Live and Work Can live and work in Australia indefinitely. Can live and work in Australia indefinitely.
Access to Healthcare Access to Medicare, Australia’s public healthcare system. Access to Medicare, Australia’s public healthcare system.
Education Access to public education for children. Access to public education for children and eligibility for student loans.
Social Security Limited access to social security benefits. Full access to social security benefits.
Voting Rights Cannot vote in federal elections. Can vote in federal, state, and local elections.
Government Jobs Limited access to government jobs. Eligible for most government jobs.
Passport Cannot hold an Australian passport. Can hold an Australian passport.
Travel Re-entry permit required for travel outside Australia. Can travel freely in and out of Australia.
australian pr visa

Visa Application Process

Applying for an Australian permanent resident visa involves understanding the specific requirements, following detailed application steps, and considering the use of a registered migration agent for assistance.

Application Requirements

To apply for a permanent resident visa in Australia, applicants must meet certain requirements set by the Australian Government. These include identifying the visa category that fits their circumstances, such as family-stream, work-stream, or business-stream visas.

Applicants need to provide valid documentation, including proof of identity, character references, and evidence of their relationship or job qualifications. Health and character checks are mandatory, and applicants may need to pass language proficiency tests depending on the visa type. Ensuring all required documents are organised is crucial for a smooth application process.

Visa Application Steps

The visa application process involves several clear steps. First, select the visa category that matches the applicant’s eligibility. Then, gather the required documentation, including identity proof, character verification, and, if necessary, health certificates and language test scores.

After compiling the documents, create an account on the Australian Government’s ImmiAccount platform. Submit the application online through this portal, paying the required visa application fees. Following submission, applicants may be asked to provide additional information or attend interviews. Regularly checking the status of the application on ImmiAccount is essential to respond to any updates promptly.

Visa Application Process Summary
Step Details
Select Visa Choose the appropriate visa category
Gather Documents Collect all necessary documentation
Submit Application Apply online via ImmiAccount
Follow Up Provide further details or attend interviews if requested

Using a Registered Migration Agent

Applicants may also choose to use a registered migration agent to assist with the visa application process. These agents are professionals authorised by the Australian Government to offer immigration advice and services.

Our registered migration agents at Immagine can help clarify which visa options are most suitable, ensure all documentation is correctly prepared, and guide applicants through each step of the application process. This can be particularly beneficial for complex cases or individuals unfamiliar with immigration procedures.

Migrate to Australia

Our immigration lawyers and registered migration agents in Melbourne will be able to find you the best visa for your unique situation. You’ll be in good hands.

Different Types of Permanent Visa Streams

Australia offers several permanent visa streams to cater to different eligibility criteria and applicant needs. The major categories include Family, Work, and Business or Investor visas, each with specific pathways that allow individuals to obtain permanent residency.

Family-Stream Permanent Visas

Family-Stream Permanent Visas are designed for individuals with close family members who are Australian citizens or permanent residents. Common visas in this stream include the Partner visa (subclass 820 and 801) and the Parent visa (subclass 103). These visas typically require sponsorship by a qualifying relative. Additionally, there are visas for dependent children and relatives who need long-term care.

Work-Stream Permanent Visas

Work-Stream Permanent Visas cater to skilled workers sponsored by Australian employers. The Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186) offers three streams: the Temporary Residence Transition stream, the Direct Entry stream, and the Agreement stream. Skilled Independent (subclass 189) and Skilled Nominated visas (subclass 190) also fall under this category, focusing on individuals with skills in demand in Australia.

Business or Investor-Stream Permanent Visas

Business or Investor-Stream Permanent Visas target entrepreneurs and investors willing to contribute economically to Australia. The Business Innovation and Investment visa (subclass 888) provides pathways for applicants who have held provisional visas and met necessary business or investment criteria. This stream encourages foreign investment and economic activity within Australia.

Other Visa Types

Other visa types include a variety of permanent residency options. These can range from Orphan Relative visas, which cater to minors without parents, to distinguished talent visas for individuals with exceptional achievements in sports, arts, or academia. Each visa under this category serves specialised needs and requires applicants to meet specific criteria.

permanent residency visa australia 1

Typical Processing Durations

Processing times for Australian permanent resident visas vary depending on the specific type of visa and other factors such as application completion and the applicant’s location.

For example, skilled (permanent) visas typically take around 6 months to process, while partner visas can take 18 months or more.

To streamline processing, it’s crucial to submit your application with all necessary supporting documents.

Different factors may impact processing times, such as whether the application is lodged online or on paper. Lodging applications online generally helps expedite the process.

Processing timeframes can also fluctuate each month as immigration authorities progress older applications and manage new submissions. Be proactive in checking for any changes in processing times and requirements.

Resident Return Visa

Australian permanent residents must navigate certain travel requirements to maintain their status. A key component of this is the travel facility linked to their visa.

A Resident Return Visa (RRV) is critical for permanent residents wishing to travel abroad. The RRV (Subclasses 155 and 157) grants a new travel facility period, which varies from three months to five years. The duration depends on individual circumstances, such as time spent in Australia.

Permanent residents should apply for an RRV before their current travel facility expires. This preparation helps ensure seamless re-entry into Australia.

Costs Associated with Permanent Residency

Obtaining a permanent residency visa in Australia involves various costs. The primary expense is the visa application fee, which varies depending on the type and subclass of visa. For example, skilled work visas and family visas have different fee structures.

Additional costs may include medical examinations, police checks, and translating documents. Applicants should also consider the cost of migration agents or legal assistance if they choose to use these services.

Once granted permanent residency, individuals may apply for bank loans to purchase property. This includes the First Home Owner Grant, which provides A$10,000 to assist with buying a home, provided certain conditions are met.

Access to Medicare and Social Benefits

Permanent residents in Australia have access to Medicare, the country’s universal healthcare system. This entitles them to medical services from doctors, specialists, and public hospitals, often at reduced costs or for free.

Permanent residents can also enrol in social security payments and benefits. For instance, they can access Centrelink payments like family assistance, unemployment benefits, and disability support.

Furthermore, permanent residents can sponsor eligible family members for permanent residency, ensuring their loved ones also benefit from these services. Being a permanent resident also opens doors for educational opportunities and public school enrolment for children.

These entitlements significantly enhance the quality of life and provide a safety net for permanent residents in Australia.

australian pr to citizenship

Pathways to Australian Citizenship

Australian citizenship provides numerous privileges such as the right to vote and the ability to work, study, and live in Australia indefinitely. There are several pathways to achieving citizenship, especially for those holding Australian Permanent Residency.

One common route is through a permanent visa. Several types of permanent visas exist, including family, work, and business visas. Each visa has specific eligibility criteria that applicants must meet.

Family Visas are popular among those who have close relatives in Australia. These visas include partner visas and parent visas. Applicants often require sponsorship from an Australian citizen or a permanent resident.

Those working in specialised fields may pursue work-stream permanent visas. These can be granted through employer sponsorship or skilled migration schemes. States and territories may also offer sponsorship for specific professions.

Business and investor-stream visas provide another avenue. These are tailored for individuals looking to invest in or establish a business in Australia.

A special mention should be made for New Zealand citizens. They can apply for Australian citizenship if they hold a Special Category Visa (SCV) or a permanent visa. The process is uniform and does not depend on the date of first arrival in Australia.

Once an applicant secures permanent residency, they can proceed to apply for citizenship. It’s essential to check all specific criteria and ensure eligibility to avoid processing delays or rejections.

Migrate to Australia

Our immigration lawyers and registered migration agents in Melbourne will be able to find you the best visa for your unique situation. You’ll be in good hands.

myer lipschitz


Myer Lipschitz

Myer Lipschitz was born in Johannesburg and is a graduate of the University of the Witwatersrand. In 1985 he was conferred the degree Bachelor of Laws. Myer completed his Articles of Clerkship with Ivor Trackman, Attorneys and was admitted as an Attorney to the Supreme Court of South Africa in 1988. Myer immigrated to New Zealand in 1989 and was admitted to practice law in New Zealand as a Barrister and Solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand...

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