australian-visaFrom today (1st of January 2010), applicants applying for an offshore GSM visa who are nominating a trade occupation will no longer be able to meet the Australian Study Requirement. These applicants are now only able to meet the work experience criterion.

Work experience means that an applicant must have been employed in a skilled occupation for a minimum of 12 months of the 24 months immediately before the day on which the visa application was made.

This change relates to the following visa subclasses:

• Skilled – Independent (Migrant) Visa (Subclass 175)
• Skilled – Sponsored (Migrant) Visa (Subclass 176)
• Skilled – Regional Sponsored (Provisional) Visa (Subclass 475)

These occupations are identical to those which require an applicant to meet the job ready requirement as part of their skills assessment should they apply for an applicable onshore GSM visa.

All other eligible applicants are still able to apply for migration based on satisfying the Australian Study Requirement or having the required work experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

I completed my Australian qualification in the last six months and wish to apply for permanent skilled migration under the GSM program. Am I still able to do so?

Your eligibility to migrate to Australia under the offshore GSM program based on meeting the Australian Study Requirement is dependent on your occupation. If your occupation is a trade occupation, you will no longer be able to apply to migrate based on meeting the Australian Study Requirement. Instead, you will be required to have at least 12 months work experience in a skilled occupation within the 24 months immediately prior to applying. If you are applying to migrate to Australia through the offshore GSM visa subclasses and your occupation is not a trade occupation, you are able to seek to migrate based on meeting the Australian Study Requirement within six months of completing your Australian qualification.

I applied for permanent migration under one of the offshore GSM visas before 1 January 2010. I nominated a trade occupation. Will I still be able to meet the Australian Study Requirement as I lodged my application based on this?

Yes. Provided you lodged a valid application before 1 January 2010, you will still be able to meet the Australian Study Requirement if you nominated a trade occupation.

I am applying in a trade occupation. Why am I now unable to meet the Australian Study Requirement from 1 January 2010?

From 1 January 2010, the skills assessment process for applicants nominating trade occupations will be strengthened to ensure the job readiness of the applicant. This process supports the Government’s May 2009 announcement regarding the implementation of a job readiness test to complement existing offshore requirements.

This will be achieved through the introduction of the job ready requirement for onshore applicants and the removal of the work experience exemption for offshore applicants. This exemption provided applicants with the opportunity to meet the Australian Study Requirement if they were unable to meet the work experience criterion. These changes will affect applicants nominating trade occupations and means applicants will be required to demonstrate that they are not only suitably qualified to perform in their nominated occupation, but are job ready and possess work experience.