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Do the right thing – Understanding and playing by Australian GSM Visa rules

The late 70s jingle to encourage Australians to care for the environment and not litter is a jingle that has stayed with me over the years. (Don’t be a tosser doesn’t quite do it for me!).

The refrain is one that aligns with my personal manifesto.

I believe that rules show us the pathway of possible and I believe in a fair go for all. And today I wanted to explain to you how doing the right thing may reap you rewards in relation to an Australian visa.

Over the past 25+ years, I have come across many different client situations. I have a plethora of examples of cases where, because clients had not followed the rules, their ‘pathway to possible’ was at risk. Let’s take a look at a recent example of, let’s call him John.

John qualified in his country as a professional engineer and had experience up his sleeve. He decided to come to Australia to study and enrolled in a basic diploma course, however to see if he had any better prospects,  John enthusiastically sought out professional work and was lucky to find a couple of companies that required his specific engineering skills.

No problem, ABN in hand, John starts working as a contractor, clocking up 30 to 40 hours per week. The company is happy, he is happy.

Fast forward three years. John now wants to apply for a residence visa for Australia via the GSM pathway. He obtains his skills assessment and works to achieve he highest score for English. He confidently submits his EOI. As part of the EOI he has claimed points for his three years of hard yakka in Australia.

John then receives an invitation to apply for a visa – yay! He approaches Aspire Australia to assist him to prepare and submit his visa application.

We start gathering data and documents to support the points he has claimed in his EOI. In gathering evidence of his work experience, we immediately notice a number of issues that could dash his dreams of becoming an Australian permanent resident:

Only lawful employment can be used to claim points for Australian employment on the points test. On a Student visa, this means 40 hours work per fortnight during school terms and full time during holidays. John’s enthusiasm for work was his downfall as all his employment was above the 40 hours per fortnight limit.

If John did not claim the points for the employment, then, at the time of assessment by the Department, he would have less points than he did on his EOI at the time of invitation and would therefore not meet the legislative criterion of having at least the same points as at EOI invitation. That would lead to a refusal of his visa.

If the Department became aware of his breach of Student visa conditions, his Student visa could be cancelled.

Future prospects for Australian visas could be jeopardized if the Department considered that John had at any time provided false or misleading information or documentation. He could face a visa ban of three years.

By breaching his Student visa conditions, therefore, John had devalued all his Australian employment, had wasted time and had risked prospects for residence in Australia.

Lessons to be learned:

#1 Get Advice Early

#2 Get Professional Help

#3 Do the Right Thing

For John, we devised several strategies for him to consider, including not taking up the visa invitation, opting for a state sponsorship instead of high points strategy and delaying submission of his EOI until he had obtained lawful evidence of the points he was claiming.

Are you really clear on the current GSM rules?

 

Book in now for a DISCOVERY SESSION and make sure you are following the rules.

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