The Australian Immigration Minister has proposed that a new points test for skilled migration visa applications will be introduced on 1 July 2011.
"The new points test balances the different factors that are considered when determining whether someone will be granted a skilled migration visa. It will deliver the best and brightest skilled migrants by emphasising high level qualifications, better English language levels and extensive skilled work experience.
The new points test will continue to award points for study in Australia, including regional study, community languages, partner skills and completing an approved Professional Year. Points will no longer be awarded on the basis of an applicant's occupation, but all applicants must still nominate an occupation on the applicable Skilled Occupation List.
It is proposed that the new points test will apply to applications made from 1 July 2011, unless the applicant is eligible for transitional arrangements".
These changes can be very confusing for potential migrants. In some cases it may be best to apply prior to the changes and for others the changes may improve their eligibility.
Potential applicants should seek advice from an Australian Registered Migration Agent.