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How do the new Australian migration policies affect you?

australian migration policies

Recently, the Australian Department of Immigration announced the Migration Strategy for the 2024-2025 financial year. Australia’s migration policies this year focus on attracting skilled workers, enhancing the quality of the education system, and improving Australia immigration system

If you’re considering applying for a visa to study, work, or settle in Australia, this information will keep you informed about important updates. It will also assist you in choosing the most appropriate visa type tailored to your needs, ensuring a successful settlement in Australia.

Australian settlement streams

Australian visa regulations offer various types of visas, offering you and your family a diverse range of immigration options that cater to your specific migration needs. There are six main groups of visas as outlined below:

Partner visas: help you and your partner settle down in Australia.
Family sponsored visasParents visas: Parents are sponsored to Australia to reunite with their children.
Child visas: Children are sponsored to Australia
  • Subclass 101 – Child visa: sponsor your biological child or stepchild.
  • Subclass 445 – Dependent Child visa: sponsor your dependent child.
Other relatives visas
  • Subclass 114 – Aged Dependent Relative visa: sponsor your old and dependent relatives.
  • Subclass 115 – Remaining Relative visa: sponsor your only relative.
  • Subclass 116 – Carer visa: sponsored by a relative to care for an Australian in need.
Student visas: allow international students and their relatives to come to Australia together.
  • Subclass 590 – Student Guardian visa: for the guardian with a student under 18 years old.
  • Subclass 485 – Graduate Temporary visa allows students to work in Australia after completing their studies.
  • Subclass 476 – Skilled Recognised Graduate visa (from overseas): Enables graduates to reside and work in Australia.
Visitor visas: helps you come to Australia for a temporary period of time
  • Subclass 600 – Visitor visa: allows you to come to Australia for tourism, to visit relatives or for short business trips.
  • Subclass 462 – Work and Holiday visa: Allows you to work and travel simultaneously.
Skilled visas: help workers come to Australia to work in their skilled occupation.General Skilled Visas
  • Subclass 189 – Skilled Independent visa allows skilled workers to live and work permanently in Australia without requiring sponsorship.
  • Subclass 190 – Skilled Nominated visa: allows skilled workers nominated by an Australian state or territory government to live and work permanently in Australia.
  • Subclass 491 – Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa: allows skilled workers to live and work in designated regional areas of Australia for up to five years.
  • Subclass 191 – Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) visa: allows eligible holders of Subclass 491 or Subclass 494) to apply for permanent residency.
Sponsored Skilled visas
  • Subclass 482 – Temporary Skill Shortage visa: allows skilled workers sponsored by an employer to work temporarily in Australia.
  • Subclass 186 – Employer Nomination Scheme visa: allows skilled workers sponsored by an employer to work and reside permanently in Australia.
  • A Subclass 494 – Skilled Employer Sponsored visa: allows skilled workers sponsored by an employer to live and work temporarily in regional Australia.
International Talent visas
  • Subclass 124 – Distinguished Talent visa: allows individuals with exceptional abilities or talents to live and work permanently in Australia.
Business and investment visas: provide investors with many attractive investment opportunities in Australia.

NOTE: The government has discontinued this visa program for new applicants.

  • A Subclass 888 visa: Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa
  • A Subclass 132 visa (Business Talent visa): helps talented investors get Australian permanent residence immediately.

Australian immigration policy for marriage

According to the Partner visa policies Australia 2024-2025, the Partner visas remain unchanged at 40,500 places, the same as the previous financial year. This number accounts for approximately 80% of the total family visa allocation, which is 52,500 places.

The Australian Prospective Marriage Visa (subclass 300) allows individuals who are engaged to an Australian citizen, permanent resident, or eligible New Zealand citizen to enter Australia to marry their fiancé(e) within 15 months. It is a temporary visa intended for applicants outside Australia.

A Partner Visa (subclass 309/100 or subclass 820/801) allows spouses or de facto partners of Australian citizens, permanent residents, or eligible New Zealand citizens to live in Australia. The subclass 309/100 visa is for applicants outside Australia, while the subclass 820/801 visa is for applicants already in Australia.

australia immigration policies for marriage
Australian immigration policy for marriage

Our consultant, Mr. Peter Cao, a registered migration agent (MARN: 1577877) and member of the Migration Institute of Australia (MIA: 12648), advises that a meticulously prepared and timely submitted application significantly enhances your likelihood of visa approval. For personalized guidance, please reach out to VEM.

Australia’s immigration policy for families

This policy exemplifies the humanity of Australia as you will be reunited with your loved ones in Australia. You can even apply for Australian citizenship if you meet all the requirements.

According to the latest family visa policies Australia, you can bring your parents to Australia on a Parent visa, which typically involves a long processing time. Alternatively, you may opt for a payment program (Contributory Parent Visa Streams) to expedite their immigration process, enabling them to join you in Australia sooner.

Moreover, as an Australian permanent resident, citizen, or eligible New Zealand citizen, you can sponsor your children through Family sponsored visas. Depending on your circumstances, you can choose a visa for biological children, adopted children, or dependent children.

Furthermore, Australia offers additional Australian migrant policy for bringing other relatives to the country.

immigration program australia for family
Australia’s immigration policy for families

Australian migration policies for students

Australia allows international students to stay, work, and eventually apply for permanent residency if they meet the Australian visa requirements.

If you aim to settle in Australia through study, it’s crucial to plan your pathway carefully from the outset. This includes selecting a field of study from the priority occupations list eligible for settlement in Australia. Additionally, ensure the state where you study offers policies allowing students to stay, work, and settle.

After completing your study program with a Student visa, the next step is to apply for a Graduate visa – Subclass 485 to gain work experience. Ultimately, obtaining a skilled visa is your pathway to remaining in Australia and achieving permanent residency.

australian visa policy for students
Australia’s immigration policy for students

Australia’s immigration policy for tourists

The Australian Visitor Visa (subclass 600) permits travel for tourism, business, or visiting family and friends without work permission. Conversely, the Work and Holiday Visa (subclass 462) allows holders to work in Australia for up to 1-3 years, depending on the country of origin!

australia immigration program for tourists
Australia’s immigration policy for tourists

Australia’s immigration policy for workers

Australian migration policies for workers are structured around two main categories of skilled visas: General Skilled Visas and Employer-Sponsored Visas.

General Skilled Visas encompass several subclasses: 189, 190, 491, and 191. These visas necessitate qualifications, skills assessments, and work experience. A key factor is the Australian points-based immigration system, which determines eligibility and invitation for application.

Employer-Sponsored Visas include subclasses 494, 482, and 186. Unlike General Skilled Visas, these do not require migration points but hinge on employer sponsorship and applicant qualifications.

aus migration policy for workers
Australia’s immigration policy for workers

If eligible for a regional provisional visa (subclass 491 or subclass 494), individuals can reside and work in regional Australia for up to five years. After three years in a regional area, application for permanent residency is feasible through the subclass 191 visa.

Graduates in Australia can further their residency prospects via employer-sponsored visas such as subclass 482 or subclass 186.

Australia’s diverse range of skilled visa options attracts numerous qualified professionals. For tailored advice on the most suitable visa pathway, consult VEM. Our registered consultants provide expert guidance to navigate your immigration journey effectively.

Consultation with VEM

Australia’s immigration policy for investors

Australia’s immigration policy for investors is structured around Business and Investment Visas, presenting appealing business opportunities within the country.

Investors with total assets of at least AUD 1,250,000 can initiate preparations to apply for the subclass 188 visa. Each subclass of the 188 visa has specific conditions, which VEM details comprehensively in a dedicated article. Upon fulfilling the requirements and holding this visa for a designated period, investors may become eligible for the subclass 888 visa, granting permanent residency in Australia.

However, it’s important to note that the Australian government has temporarily suspended new applications for business investment visas.

immigration policy in australia for business
Australian migration policy for investment and business

Changes in the new Australian migration policy 2024 – 2025

Increased English Requirements for subclass 500 and subclass 485

For Student visa – Subclass 500:

The latest Student visa regulations Australia focus on the English requirements. Specifically:

  • Minimum IELTS score increased from 5.5 to 6.0.
  • Minimum IELTS score for the English Language Intensive Courses for Overseas Students (ELICOS) increased from 4.5 to 5.0.
  • No IELTS certificate required for students enrolling only in ELICOS.

For Graduate Temporary visa – Subclass 485:

  • Minimum IELTS score increased from 6.0 to 6.5 (or equivalent), with a minimum score of 5.5 in each skill (listening, speaking, reading, writing).
  • Note: The IELTS certificate is valid for one year from the date of application for subclass 485.
changes in Australian migration policy
changes in Australian migration policy

New Test for Student visa

The new Australian migration policies also stated that starting March 23, 2024, changes to the Student Visa (subclass 500) visa application process Australia will come into effect. Applicants will no longer be required to submit a Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE) Statement. 

Instead, the Genuine Student (GS) test will be introduced to assess the genuine intention of students to study in Australia. This new test aims to ensure that applicants genuinely intend to undertake their chosen course of study while in Australia.

Changes to Graduate Temporary Visa (Visa 485)

The Australian Department of Education has announced that the duration for which international students can stay and work in Australia with subclass 485 has been reduced from 4-6 years to 2-4 years.

Additionally, the maximum age for applying for Visa 485 has been lowered from 50 to 35 years from 1/7/2024.

Changes to Visa 482

The DHA recently reduced the work experience requirement for subclass 482 from 2 years to 1 year for all applications submitted from November 23, 2024.

Additionally, Australia plans to replace subclass 482 with the Skills In Demand visa by the end of this year. This new visa will be divided into three streams based on annual income and occupation.

Jobs and Skills Australia has also released a draft Core Skills Occupations List for consultation purposes. This Core Skills Occupations List may be applied similarly to the Migration Skilled Occupation List for Visa 482.

Australian Migration Program Planning Levels for 2024-2025

In the Australian migration policies 2024-2025, Australia has set a total of 185,000 visa places, reduced by 5,000 places compared to the previous year’s (190,000 places).

The Skilled Visas show the most notable changes, accounting for over 70%, totaling 132,200 places, a decrease of nearly 5,000 places from 2023-2024. 

Notably, the Employer Sponsored visas have increased from 36,825 places to 44,000 places. This Skilled migration policy Australia aims to facilitate quicker pathways to permanent residency for temporary residents through visas such as the Subclass 482 or Subclass 457.

Additionally, Regional Skilled visas have increased from 32,300 places to 33,000 places this fiscal year. State and Territory Nominated visas also account for 33,000 places.

The Skilled visas program aims at attracting skilled labor to address Australia’s economic challenges and support economic recovery efforts. If you’re considering applying for a Skilled visa, it’s important to check the priority occupations list for 2024.

For personalized guidance on immigration pathways, please contact VEM. Mr. Peter Cao, a registered migration agent, accredited by MARA, can provide specific advice tailored to your situation.

Consultation with VEM

Restricting onshore visa hopping to the Student visa (Subclass 500) program

According to the new Australian migration policies, from July 1st, 2024, Visitor visa and Temporary Graduate visa holders will no longer be able to apply for Student visas (subclass 500) onshore.

This change is made because there were more than 36,000 applications to transition from a visitor visa to a student visa from 1st July 2023 to the end of May 2024.

The change also makes it clear that graduates should either find skilled jobs and become permanent residents or depart the country to avoid staying temporarily forever.

Benefits of Australian permanent residency policies

Permanent residence benefits

The new Australian settlement policy has introduced many wonderful benefits:

  • You will get an Australian passport – one of the “powerful” passports of the world.
  • If you are an Australian permanent resident, you will live in Australia indefinitely.
  • With an Australian passport, you can visit 157 countries without having to apply for a visa.
benefits of australian migration visa
Permanent residence benefits

Health insurance benefits (Medicare)

Medicare (established in 1984), is Australia’s national health service. This is also seen as a great benefit in immigration policy in Australia.

  • All Australian permanent residents are entitled to a Medicare support package.
  • Retired permanent residents and Australian citizens both receive benefits. Besides, if they have an income below the specified level, they will have the opportunity to receive incentives. Or get some Medicare health care services for free.
  • Medicare covers 75% – 100% of public healthcare costs.

Selling real estate in Australia

  • Get tax incentives the first time you buy property in Australia.
  • Perpetual ownership of real estate is allowed.
  • Receive some financial incentives from the Australian Government when buying property.

Lower tuition fees

  • Pay lower tuition fees than international students. For high school, your child is 100% supported by the Government.
  • There is an opportunity to apply for about 60% of tuition fees support from the Australian Government (CSP Program).
  • There is no limit on the number of degrees you want to pursue.
  • Support for preschool tuition fees from the Australian Social Welfare Center.
  • You can borrow money from HELP (the federal government’s education loan program) to pay for your tuition. Also, you don’t have to pay off debt until your income is high enough

The advantages of becoming an Australian citizen

Many people want to get Australian citizenship after permanently residing in this country as it brings the below benefits:

  • Study, live and work in Australia.
  • There is no restriction on the length of stay in Australia as a permanent resident.
  • Right to vote.
  • Enjoy full benefits in terms of health, education, social security.
  • You can apply for citizenship for your children if they meet the Australian citizenship requirements.

How much money do you need to migrate to Australia?

As mentioned, there are currently many Australian immigration programs for you to choose from.

In addition, the amount of money you have to spend to settle in Australia depends on the type of visa you choose. 

The costs associated with each visa stream are detailed on the Department of Home Affairs’ website. For personalized advice and assistance, feel free to reach out to VEM.

Consultation with VEM

Successful Australian settlement experience

Before you begin your Australian visa application journey, you should get updated from the latest Australian migration policies and consider learning from the experiences of those who have already successfully settled in Australia.

At VEM, many of our clients, like Mr. Dean, have achieved their goal of settling in Australia after receiving thorough assessment and guidance from our team. Mr. Dean, for example, chose VEM for assistance in sponsoring his wife to live in Australia, highlighting our expertise and support throughout his visa application process.

For an insightful review of Mr. Dean’s experience and to hear firsthand about his journey with VEM, watch the video below. It’s a valuable resource to understand the visa application process Australia and make informed decisions about your own visa application.

YouTube Video


Expert Advice from Mr. Peter Cao, Licensed Australian Migration Consultant

Mr. Peter Cao, a professional migration consultant licensed by the Australian Government, has contributed to this article to assist you and your family in achieving the Australian dream efficiently. 

Australian migration laws are subject to regular updates, and at VEM, we ensure we are always informed about the latest changes.

At VEM, our goal is to equip you with the knowledge necessary to achieve your aspirations in Australia. If you have any questions or need further assistance, please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below. We’re here to help.

Consultation with VEM

By: Peter Phong D Cao – Registered migration agent

(MARN: 1577877, MIA: 12648)

Frequently asked questions

What is the difference between a Permanent Resident card and Australian citizenship?

The PR (Permanent Resident) card is an Australian permanent resident card. This is considered an indispensable purpose if you have a desire to live long in the land of kangaroos.

When owning a PR card, you will enjoy all the benefits of education, health care, social security, etc. like an Australian citizen. However, you do not have the right to vote in this country, while an Australian citizen can.

The Australian Government does not require permanent residents of their country to become Australian citizens. But most people who are settling in this country want to become Australian citizens. Because then, they can participate in elections and get priority in many other cases.

To know exactly what the benefits of Australian citizenship are, you should contact VEM for more detailed information.

How much money do I need to prepare for my Australian migration?

If you want to immigrate to Australia, the first cost that you have to pay is the visa application fee. Next, you need to make sure you have enough money to live in Australia such as housing fees, living expenses, transportation costs, etc.

Is it hard to migrate to Australia?

To answer this question, VEM wants you to know that you have to go through two stages: before you arrive in Australia and when you arrive in Australia.

To be granted a visa, you must prepare your visa application carefully and properly. You need to provide all the information required by the Australian Government. More than that, you must make them as clear and detailed as possible.

Otherwise, Australian Immigration officers will take a long time to verify the authenticity of the information you give which costs you more waiting time.

Next, once you arrive in Australia, you need to fulfill all your obligations with the visa you hold. Furthermore, no matter which visa you settle in, you must make sure you have enough money to live in Australia. In particular, if you want to sponsor your relatives, you will also face many difficulties if you do not understand Australian immigration laws.

That’s why you should contact VEM right from the moment you intend to come to Australia to settle down. Over the past 10 years, VEM has always thoughtfully advised and implemented each application to help clients achieve the Australian dream.

In particular, we are always ready to support you if you need to sponsor your relatives to come to Australia. With VEM’s assistance, the road to Australia for you and your family will certainly be much smoother.

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3 thoughts on “How do the new Australian migration policies affect you?

  1. Garth says:

    My son Warren Gedye, is a Cathay Pacific pilot working out of Hong Kong. The situation there is becoming so stressful due to the changes taking place in that country, it is felt that he and his family should move. I would like him to come to Australia permanently. Please can someone advise me.


    Hi, my son is currently enrolled at the University of Sydney, and will graduate next semester with a Bachelor’s Degree in Visual Arts, Cinema, Television. He is interested to practice his chosen field in Australia, plus, he wants to further his education through a Masteral Degree or post=graduate studies. How can he go about this?

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