FAQs: Immigration to Australia
Do you have questions about immigration to Australia? We bet you do! That’s why we’ve decided to answer the questions we often get from our clients.
Go ahead – bookmark this page immediately. Then start reading!
1. Can anyone immigrate to Australia?
No, it is not anyone who can move to Australia. You must be eligible for an Australian visa to immigrate to Down Under.
2. What are the different types of visas for Australia?
Australia offers visas that enable migrants to do the following:
- Work in Australia as a skilled migrant or sponsored worker
- Set up and start a business
- Join an Australian or eligible New Zealand spouse, fiancé or life partner
- Join family – visas for parents and children
- Invest in Australia to obtain residency
3. Can a 50-year-old immigrate to Australia?
Yes, Australia has visa options for people 50 or older:
- Employer-sponsored visas: You must usually be under the age of 45 to apply, but some of these visas have exemptions to their age requirements
- Global Talent Visa: This visa allows exceptionally talented individuals to work in Australia, and it has no age limits
- Business Innovation and Investment Visa: You can apply for these visas if you’re under the age of 55
4. What do I do if I want to work in Australia?
To work in Australia, you must qualify and successfully apply for one of Australia’s work visas. You can also work in Australia as the spouse, partner, or fiancé of an Australian or eligible New Zealander.
5. What skills does Australia need?
Australia needs skilled workers in hundreds of occupations in various fields ranging from education to health. These occupations appear on Australia’s skilled occupation lists, of which there are four:
- Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL)
- Short-term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL)
- Regional Occupation List (ROL)
- Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS)
You can speak with our licensed advisor to find out if your occupation is on a skilled occupation list and if you qualify for a work visa.
6. Can I move to Australia as a tiler/nurse/architect/etc.?
Your ability to immigrate to Australia depends not only on your occupation – even if that occupation is on a skilled occupation list.
You’ll also have to meet Australia’s other immigration and work visa requirements. That’s why it’s critical to do an eligibility assessment to see if you can immigrate to Australia to live and work there.
7. How do I start a business in Australia?
As a foreigner hoping to immigrate to Australia as an entrepreneur, you must qualify for a Business Innovation Stream (Provisional) visa (subclass 188).
The subclass 188 visa is a pathway to permanent residence. If you meet the requirements, you could go on to apply for PR through the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888).
Everything else you need to know, from how to choose a business structure to the taxes you have to register for, can be found in this blog post.
8. What’s the first step if I want to immigrate to Australia?
The first step is always an eligibility assessment to see if you qualify to live in Australia. The assessment will show if you’re eligible for a visa and will also detail the next steps.
While there are free online assessments available, it’s wise to get a licensed advisor to do your assessment. An advisor that’s licensed and registered with MARA is up to date on all immigration regulations and accountable for the advice they give.
9. What are the costs to consider when moving to Australia?
There are various costs to consider. These include but are not necessarily limited to:
- Visa application fees
- Immigration advisor fees if you work with an advisor
- Flights to Australia
- Relocation costs, including your household goods and pets
You must also consider these costs:
- Australia’s cost of living
- Housing – compare renting vs buying a home
- School fees if you have children
- Banking costs
- Healthcare if you don’t qualify for Medicare
- Buying a car if you’re not shipping yours
10. How long will it take to process my application?
The answer to this question depends on the visa you’re applying for. External factors such as the number of applications in the system might also affect your application.
Our advisors will be able to give you time estimates once it’s clear for which visa you qualify.
11. Can my parents immigrate to Australia?
Yes, your parents are allowed to join you in Australia subject to them meeting the immigration requirements. Australia’s parent visa options are:
- Parent visa (subclass 103): For retirees
- Aged Parent visa (subclass 804): Applicants must be old enough to receive the age pension in Australia
- Contributory Aged Parent visas (subclasses 864 and 884): Applicants must be old enough to receive the age pension in Australia
- Contributory Parent visas (subclasses 143 and 173): For retirees
- Sponsored Parent (Temporary) visa (subclass 870): Allows parents to visit Australia for up to three or five years
Please be aware that the processing times of some of these visas are extraordinarily long.
12. Can I take my pets?
You’ll be glad to know that you are allowed to take your furry friends to Australia. However, a short list of cats and dogs are unfortunately not allowed into Australia.
Those dogs and cats that can enter Australia must have the following:
- Pet import permit
- Compulsory treatments and blood tests before departing for Australia
- Rabies vaccination within one year of entering Australia – other vaccinations may also be necessary
You can read more about taking your pets to Australia on our blog.
13. Can a medical condition stop me from immigrating to Australia?
Yes, medical conditions could stop you from immigrating to Australia. If you’re concerned about a medical condition, it’s best to get advice from our licensed advisor.
14. Can I immigrate to Australia with a criminal record?
You must be of good character to live in Australia and remain of good character. Unfortunately, you might not be able to immigrate to Australia if any of the below applies to you:
- You have a substantial criminal record.
- Your past and present criminal or general conduct show that you are not of good character.
- There is a risk that while you are in Australia, you would:
- engage in criminal conduct;
- harass, molest, intimidate or stalk another person;
- vilify a segment of the Australian community;
- incite discord in the Australian community or a part of it; or
- be a danger to the Australian community or a part of it.
- You have been convicted, found guilty or had a charge proven for one or more sexually-based offences involving a child.
You can get all the visa character requirements on the Department of Home Affairs website.
15. How long before I can get Australian citizenship?
Permanent residents are eligible for Australian citizenship after living in the country for four years. The main requirements are that you have been:
- Living in Australia on a valid visa for the past four years (at the time of your application).
- A permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen for the past 12 months.
- Away from Australia for no more than 12 months in total in the past four years, including no more than 90 days in total in the past 12 months.
You can read more about Australia’s citizenship requirements on the Home Affairs website.
Didn’t see your burning questions about immigration to Australia?
Our blog is the perfect place to get answers to your questions. It covers various topics related to immigration to Australia. Alternatively, book a consultation call to speak directly with our licensed advisor.