State sponsorship – Vic and Qld suspend applications
Live in Melbourne and Business and Skilled Migration Queensland have suspended acceptance of applications for state sponsorship due to high volumes and backlogs of applications. Details for each authority are provided below and by clicking on the links to the relevant websites.
Live in Melbourne
No new applications are being accepted, this is a temporary suspension. Applications received prior to 15 May 2018 will continue to be assessed, but outcomes may be delayed.
Temporary suspension on issuing new invitations, for both business and skilled migration.
Immigration SA – RCB procedures update
Priority processing arrangements Immigration SA has provided an update on its RCB procedures for MIA members:
Applications for positions in country SA regions and positions with salary over $141k will be prioritised.
On receipt of an application, Immigration SA will determine whether it needs to be priority processed (request for priority processing is not required).
The March RSMS changes implemented by the Department of Home Affairs have resulted in some RCB advice changes.
RCB’s are now required to provide advice to the Department of Home Affairs on the following:
- Whether the identified person would be paid at least the annual market salary rate for the occupation*
- Whether there is a genuine need for the identified person to be employed in the position, under the direct control of the nominator.
- Whether the position can be filled by an Australian Citizen or Australian permanent resident who is living in, or would move to, the local area concerned.
*The Department of Home Affairs will assess whether the occupation is above the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold (TSMIT) – currently AUD 53,900.
New RCB advice requirements
As a result of these regulation changes, the following change applies to RCB advice applications submitted to Immigration SA.
- Positions advertised in print media, will also need to be advertised online on one of the recruitment sites listed in the RCB advice checklist. This is to demonstrate a broader recruitment process to attract suitable Australian Citizens or Permanent Residents who are willing to move to the local area for the position.
When a position is vacant due to registration, Immigration SA may request additional documentation regarding the previous incumbent’s employment.
All documentation in support of an application must be uploaded in the online application form. From 7 May 2018, any documents emailed separately will not be considered in the assessment process and will be deleted.
If needed, you can scan multiple documents and save them as one attachment in the application form. There is also an additional upload button in the ‘recruitment activity’ section of the application form.
Please note: separate documents will only be accepted when Immigration SA requests them as part of the assessment process.
Immigration SA will only provide RCB advice once per employer nomination application lodged with the Department of Home Affairs (applications for the same position with the same nominee).
If you receive “not-satisfied” advice from Immigration SA, please provide any further information or documentation addressing the “not-satisfied” advice directly to the Department of Home Affairs.
A link to the Immigration SA site is available here.
EU GDPR and Code of Conduct
MIA members who transact business in the EU will be affected by the extra-territoriality provisions of the GDPR. The MIA has alerted OMARA to conflicts that exists between the GDPR and the Code of Conduct.The European Union (EU) General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) contains new data protection requirements that will apply from 25 May 2018.
For example, a national of the EU has the right to erasure (right to be forgotten). While the Code requires RMAs to retain documents for seven years, the GDPR requires the data to be erased if requested by the individual and if it is no longer necessary to retain it for the purpose for which that personal data was collected. The situation could arise where an EU client requests an RMA to destroy their records once the visa application had been decided. If the RMA complies with the GDPR requirements, it could place the agent in breach of the Code.
The OMARA has now committed to examining the conflicts that may arise between the Code and the GDPR and the MIA will keep members informed.
The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner also provides information on its site which may be useful to members in determining their exposure to the GDPR:
From 25 May 2018 Australian businesses of any size may need to comply with the GDPR if they have an establishment in the European Union (EU), if they offer goods and services in the EU, or if they monitor the behaviours of individuals in the EU.
The GDPR includes requirements that resemble those in the Privacy Act 1988, and additional measures that similarly aim to foster transparent information handling practices and business accountability around data handling.
In the lead-up to the commencement of the GDPR requirements, businesses should confirm whether they are covered by the GDPR, and if so, take steps to implement any necessary changes to ensure compliance.
Further guidance from the Commissioner is available here.
The European General Data Protection Regulations are available here.
Skilling Australians Fund Act
Although the Migration Amendment (Skilling Australians Fund) Bill 2017 and associated Migration (Skilling Australians Fund) Charges Bill 2017 have been passed by Parliament, both are still waiting for Royal Assent.