So I have decided to get an immigration agent to help me handle my PR application and hope that it can be done nicely. I’m currently holding a temporary long stay busines visa (457) and will be applying for an offshore skill migration visa (175). For the coming months, I’ll update this post to record my experiences and road to getting my PR.
15th October 2008
1. Sent out the application form to Canberra for IELTS english test. There has been a newly open test session to meet the demand of PR application just yesterday. The test date wil be on 20th November 2008 (for poeple residing in WA only).
2. Signed an agreement with my agent and was told what doucments to prepare including:
– Birth certificate for police clearances from both Australia and my home country
– University letter of completion, academic record and graduate certificate for skill assessment.
According to my agent, police clearances and medical inspection can be done at a latter stage, but the least that I can do now is to apply for an IELTS test and apply for a skill assessment with Institute of Engineers Australia. Ain’t it a surprise that skills assessment for engineers cost $110 but $350 for accountants?
* These experiences are purely mine and are here for your references. Your mileage might vary if you decide to follow through what I’ve done. You should consult a professional or agent if you’re looking for advices.
18th October 2008
It’s Saturday and I went to see my agent. Learnt that I don’t need letter of completion from my Uni since I have more then a year of working experience but do need the official transcript (those with units title and results). I did brought a copy of the transcript which was printed from the uni portal but that wasn’t accepted, I will need to provide an official copy which you probably can get from the University’s Student Services for around 10 bucks.
My agent told me that I will get 10 points due to the fact that I have a year of working experience. It also means that even if I get 6 for all 4 bands in the IELTS test, that would be enough for me to get 120 points to satisfy the points requirements to apply for PR. I’m confident that I can get at least all 7 nevertheless.
My agent asked for a copy of the contract / appointment letter as it will be used as a reference to write some kind of letter. Not sure who is that targetted to but I suspect it’s to Engineers Australia at this stage.
Mid November 2008
Sat for IELTS test. The test was held in Perth Convention Centre and adminstration was a total mess. There were LOTS of people sitting for the test, and there simply wasn’t enough adminstrative personnel verifying these people’s identities. By the time all the candidates were sitting in the hall, it was already more then an hour late from the original test time. Anyhow, there wasn’t much problem with the test itself. I managed to finish all of the materials in time.
The oral test was on the next day after the written and listening test. I was a bit late for it and reported just in time for the examiner to call out my name. It was all just talking and common sense after that. No big deal.
Mid December 2008
Got my IELTS results and they were pretty good. 9.0 for listening, 8.5 for reading, 7.5 for writing and 7.0 for speaking. So far, so good.
Sat down with my agent and applied for PR online. It was so simple and involved just a few clicks. I would advise people to actually do it themselves now if they have the time and the discipline to take action to arrange for the paperworks and IELTS test. All things done at this stage, all I can do now is to wait. Waiting for what? For the case officer to actually open up my files (or case) to see if I’m actually eligible to be awarded a PR. And this, my friend, takes time and there’s no simple answer to when or how fast the PR can be approved.
Apparently, there were some misinformation given out to me by my agent prior to the application. It appears that I have to get all 7 across my IELTS test to qualify for the application (he initially told me I need all 6 only). Agents are agents, fast and show real initiative initially just to get you to sign off a contract agreement to use their service. But once you’ve signed the contract, they cool off and slow down while they chase off another new contract with someone else. Nothing special, just human nature. So be sure to keep a cool head and chase up your agent when it’s neccessary so they know you are not gonna be taken for granted. There were some finer details which I feel like being cheated and I simply won’t recommend this agent to my friends whatsoever.
Back to Australia after a trip to my hometown. Still no news about my PR. Waiting, waiting, waiting. Anyhow, I’m hopeful I will get it 🙂