Immigration Update - January 2018

Josie Marr By Josie Marr
Thursday, 04 January 2018

Further changes were announced on 20 December 2017 and 4 January 2018:

  • The Department of Immigration and Border Force Protection has changed its name
  • Increase to the financial requirements for certain Student Visa applications

This article explains the changes, potential impact on visa applications and why using an expert of your choice may be beneficial.

Department of Immigration and Border Force Protection

The Home Affairs Portfolio was created on 20 December 2017, amalgamating Australia's immigration agencies, federal law enforcement, national and transport security, criminal justice and emergency management.

The Department of Immigration and Border Force Protection are now formally known as the Department of Home Affairs.

This now brings Immigration closer to other national security agencies and may result in tighter scrutiny when visa applicants are assessed against factors including their identity, whether their intentions for making a particular visa application are genuine and whether the information they provide to support an application is false or misleading.

Student Visas

Sufficient funds for cost of living

In certain instances student visa applications must be submitted with evidence the applicants have sufficient funds available whilst undertaking studies in Australia.

Today, the Department of Home Affairs announced the minimum funds required will increase on 1 February 2018 - the increase will start at around 2.3% and will continue to change in line with Australia's consumer price index (CPI).

From 1 February 2018:

  • Main Student or Guardian: $20,290
  • Partner or Spouse: $7,100
  • Per Child: $3,040

Conclusion

Many changes to the migration portfolio and the various types of Australian visas have come into effect over the last 6 - 8 months. Some of these changes are still in place and some have been disallowed subsequently reverting back to the original requirements.

More changes to the migration program are scheduled to take place over the coming months and are likely to create a surge in the number of visa applications being lodged before those changes take effect.

With that in mind, this is a timely reminder that the Department of Home Affairs may make decisions on visa applications based on the information submitted and in many instances are not required to ask for further supporting evidence.

In light of the above, the chances of lodging an invalid application and risking your immigration status, or having a visa application refused is a real possibility.

Acacia's migration agents have many years of experience and are ready and able to assist you to achieve your migration goals.

If you would like to work with us, the best way to proceed is to book a consultation with one of our advisors. Aside from outlining your migration options in writing, you will be able to judge for yourself what it's like to work with Acacia and whether we are the right experts for you.

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