We are currently analysing the full detail of the Federal Governments recent announcing released with the budget. Here is a quick summary of what we know so far.
No English Language requirement will be associated with a subclass 300, 309 or 820 application. So the new requirements will not delay first stage processing and couples being united.
If you have a long standing relationship by definition the test will not apply and permanent residency can be issued in the first instance as is the present case.
If you have a first stage partner visa, you need to pass a very basic English test in order to apply for your permanent visa. This includes up to 500 hours free English Language tuition. This test appears to be very low level and nothing like the requirements for skilled and employer sponsored visas.
Exemptions will be available for those holding a USA, Canada, UK, NZ or Irish passport or to those who can demonstrate education in English.
Sponsors who are permanent residents also have to demonstrate English language proficiency to the same level as visa applicants when sponsoring for permanent residency.
Onshore applications will received priority.
Sponsors located in Regional Australia will have priority in their partners visa being processed.
30,000 now annual places have been made available in the partner visa program to speed up partner visa processing.
This is just a preliminary analysis and I shall have a more detailed analysis available in next weeks newsletter. At this stage the media and migration agents are making this sound a lot more complex and onerous on applicants than it really is. My view on this may change once I have examined the complete detail of the program but my initial advice is that it is not a cause for any panic. If Agents are telling you too quickly apply I suspect it is for other reasons which are for their benefit not yours. As usual if unsure please contact us and we will happily answer any questions.