Australian Visas – Processing could be delayed to 2011

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Australian Visa Delays Again!The Australian Immigration and Citizenship department have started issuing letters to visa applicants who have applied for Australian Residency under certain visa classes.

The letter confirms that priority will be given to applicants who are applying under the employer or state sponsored visa classes. In addition the letter also confirms that priority will remain for those holding a primary occupation which is listed on the Critical Skills List (CSL)

Essentially though, the letter goes onto confirm that if you do not fall into one of these three categories, it now looks almost certain that the processing of your application will be delayed into the 2010 – 1011 Migration program year.

The key text taken from the letter is as follows:

“As you may be aware, in a media release dated 12 May 2009, the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Senator Chris Evans (“the Minister”) announced that, in response to the continued economic slowdown, the Australian Government has decided that the permanent skilled migrant intake for the 2009-10 program year will be 108,100 places.

As a result, the priority arrangements implemented on 1 January 2009 following the Minister’s direction in relation to the order of consideration of certain applications for sponsorship, nomination and visas under the Skill Stream of the Migration Program, will remain in place for 2009-10. Consistent with that direction, visa applications under the permanent GSM Program will be processed according to the following order:

1. employer sponsorship
2. State or Territory sponsorship
3. an occupation on the Critical Skills List (CSL)
4. an occupation on the Migration Occupation in Demand List (MODL)
5. all other applications in date of lodgement order

The arrangements put in place will continue to ensure that priority is given to employer-sponsored and government-sponsored visa applications, and that skills shortages in particular fields and regional areas are addressed. Furthermore, the CSL will remain in place for those applicants who have skills in areas of critical need and are seeking to migrate to Australia without a sponsor.
How are you affected?

Your application does not fall into Groups 1-2 and your nominated occupation is not on the CSL . This means that no further processing can be done on your application until all applications in Groups 1-3 have been finalised.

Based on current application rates for Groups 1-3, it is unlikely at this stage that applications which fall in Groups 1-3 will be exhausted in the 2009-10 Migration Program year and processing of Groups 4 and 5 will be delayed until this has occurred.

This arrangement applies to all applications in Groups 4 and 5, irrespective of whether health and character clearances have been provided; the date your application was submitted; whether the application is in the final stages of processing or your nominated occupation was previously on the CSL.

We will contact you again should there be any changes to the above arrangements.”

To say that this will be devastating news for anyone in this category would will be a massive understatement and we’ll continue to keep track of any changes as and when they happen.

UPDATE: Please see this article for Visa classes not impacted by this announcement

You can read the full text of the letter by Clicking Here.

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  1. Hi, Ronnie Kenzie. What’s the purpose of the council that has been put in place? I lodged my application in August 2007 and it has yet to be allocated to a case officer as of todate. Asked my agent about the new “processing priority” policy and he replied that he cant do anything about it. Wow, what happened now to my hard-earned money paid to DIAC and agent?

  2. Hi! To all who are desperate, i am too. Have applied since June 2008 and now they are saying not before end of 2012, therefore probably meaning 2013, which means a total waiting period of 5 years since the lodgement of the application. This is more than ridiculous. Wouldn’t have the market needs change even more until then?and who tells us they will not ask to wait more after that period?Can we believe in them anymore?We would never have put ourselves in such situations if we knew it and which is more, they will not refund us a cent! The economic crisis only serves as an escape goat. This is really not normal. Now awaiting whether the council which has been put in place will bring some new light to our questions. Who will want to apply if they have to wait for such a long period to get an answer?That is more than ridiculous for them to put ourselves in such a situation. It is very frustrating to come an have an eye on situations everyday on the net about what is happening. I cannot hold on anymore. At least, i see i am not alone in this situation but what can we do at the same time??

  3. No case office still, I applied November 2008. Every day check your postings. I am preparing to celeberate my first year of application. I hope I may not celeberate second year of application in same situation. Now I am following two to three riligions – I think my original god does not have much power to understand me.

  4. Yup ofcourse this is rediculous, i am looking to aply for acs but wait till next month, see whether new modl has something for me or not, why to waist my precious resources and time if i couldnt achieve something sooner, better i would opt for canada, though not a first choice but as a last resort, because for me time is most precious, does anyone have got idea about the changes in upcoming modl in context of it profession, and when it will be announced.

  5. non priority visa never been process in future …….so f’kin gov do not tell us it will process in 2011.train your policy maker govt official to give us proper answer ,because i got letter last yr that my visa application will not process this year(2008-2009) & likely to process next finance year(2009-2010),now they says 2010-2011….make your decision and tell us what is your policy….give us fair answer……….

  6. This is getting ridiculous day by day … people are counting on their lives .. they are waiting for this one chance in their life so they can get rid of their life in hell, as currently their are people who are suffering in their current organisation. The bossess of today’s time how a**hole they are and the sufferings you go thru, at such points of life you count on this immigration to australia !! and here they are playing with our lives…

    What is wrong with their advisors, they cant advise them on migrating young skilled workers so atleast their economy shoudl benefit, they migrate people after such a long wait where they have loose all the interest in Australia and the enthusiasm, then you end up in bringing in low morale immigrants and they retire soon and go on aged people benefits.

    Seriously, that is why middle east is the talk of the town with developments taking the world by storm as they always recruit in people at their young ages so they contribute to the maximum.

  7. I can’t believe the Australian government thinks that they can exploit immigrants like this. It is obvious now that the Australian economy has NOT been severely affected by the financial ‘crisis’; yet that doesn’t stop them from using it as an excuse to push their own xenophobic agendas. I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if a lot of ‘non-priority’ visas NEVER made it to processing… if other visas always take priority, regardless of when they were lodged, the rest of us will just continue to be bumped further down in the queue! It is completely unfair to force us to waste an indefinite amount of our lives waiting for our applications to be processed – but it would be equally unacceptable to give up and withdraw our applications, for NO refund (though I’m sure this is exactly what the government wants us to do!)

    I, for one, want ACTION! I’m willing to file against the Minister for unethical behaviour. Who wants to join a class action? I couldn’t be more serious.

  8. I applied in December 2007 and I haven’t still been allocated a case officer! Looks like I will not get one until end of next year, if this comes in to play.
    I think Aus government is being very unfair on us applicants whose money they have already taken!
    I have been waiting for 18 months since I lodged my application and how many more do I have to wait while they hold my money without a decision?

  9. Ladies & Gents,
    I am also in your boat. My consultant does not even talk to me. I thought I am the only one who affected like this. Great company- I am also one of yours. I applied in November 2008. Still do not even allocate case officer. How is that? I think we all have to wait and pray for our own religions. No option. But there is one option in addition to above. Send different letters to immigration department saying that if we applied try to process early as possible. By keeping on a waiting list for a long term specially Australia will never get benefit. As you all know the applicant will move to Australia what ever the day when he get. But if you keep on hold – the man will get old and another two years of working life will contribute to a different country. At the end of the day they receive aged people. Smart thing they should do is process as soon as possible the existing applicants and restrict on timely for new applicants. I do not know why they can not think this simple logic.
    Have a great day, week, months, years (Probably until 2011)

    1. Sorry Venna Wei, I don`t think the house prices are about to drop, our immigration laws in Australia have very little effect on domestic housing. There is still a huge demand for property here and the market has not collapsed like it did in the U.S.A. Better you know the truth than live on false hope. Good luck to you.

  10. What the fk! Australia has been least affected by the global economic cirsis and I can see the AUD increasing every day. Infact its better than US dollar. Govt is playing games to accumulating more money from people and keeping them in unknown state. I applied in Jan 2009 and ever sicne then have been waiting for some action. Now after hearing this news I am very upset. I dont think i ll wait for 2 yrs to get PR. Australia is not worth puttin myself in such a situation.

    I had all my plans lined up. How can the fk’ng govt take such action.

    1. I definitely agree. Australia isn’t really THAT AFFECTED AS IT IS IN US! I think you’re right, they are trying to “use the current economic crisis” as an escape goat to delay the visa processing and use the fees for the next 3 to 4 years!!!

      Ok, give me a list of all AU companies that shut down its operations and how much losses did they incur so far as compared with all AU companies that are still running and making money. My gosh! _A_T_S are even subcontracting some of its operations with European companies who are hiring those Americans who lost their jobs from their own country. And you’re telling me that Australia was greatly affected? Mind you, these sub-contracted employees does not even fall under the CSL or MODL lists!

  11. Gents,

    this is not logic, i talk to our agent, infroms no way to apply this policy, we will wait until next week then every thing will be very clear for those applied before 1-9-2007….

    just one week ..

    hope to hear good news

    1. Please let me know what your agent says for those who have applied before -9-2007….and for sub class 136

  12. I applied in September 2007 and got my case officer in October, but suddenly Australian government started changing the rules.It seems they do not care about peoples lives and time.I had 4 years working experience in Australia then came back to my country and now!!shame on
    them…although they got right to do that, this policy is not fair.