Australia Immigration Points

Written by Patricia Tunstall
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A points test applies to those applying for a Skilled Permanent Residency Visa and a Graduate Skilled Visa. There are no points tests for the Business Visa or the Partner Visa. The Australian government sets aside a certain number of visas every year to try to accommodate thousands of skilled workers who are needed in the growing Australian economy.

In addition to meeting the requirements for skilled migration, applicants must also meet the "Pass Mark" for the Skilled Visa points test, currently set at 120 points (110 points if you can obtain Australian Sponsorship). If you score fewer than 120 points, but more than 70 points, you have met the pool mark, and your application will be held in the pool of applications for up to two years. Should the pass mark be lowered during that time, and should your score at least equal the new pass mark, your application will then be processed.

How the Points Work

Points are awarded for skill, age, English language ability, work experience, occupation in demand, Australian qualifications (completing educational degrees or study in Australia), regional Australia (living and studying for at least two years in regional Australia), spouse skills, and relationship (for Skilled-Australian sponsored). Bonus points are awarded for one of the following: capital investment in Australia; skilled work experience in Australia; or fluency in one of Australia's major languages (other than English).

The Department of Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs (DIMIA) issues a Skilled Occupation List (SOL). This is important for visa applicants because points are awarded for occupations on this list. Another critical list is the Migration Occupations in Demand List (MODL), which is reviewed each year to include those occupations that are in short supply in the nation. Occupations on this list are also given extra points to bolster their score in the points test.

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