Immigration Law

Immigration Law

Our experienced immigration lawyers can assist with the following immigration matters:

  • Helping people obtain temporary or permanent residency
  • Helping people bring their family members to Australia
  • Assistance with extension of visas
  • Assisting people in identifying reasons why their application should not be refused/residence cancelled

Applying for an Australian Visa

The Migration Act 1958 and Migration Regulations 1994 provide pathways allowing eligible people to migrate to Australia. Each pathway to Australian residency involves different visas, application procedures, and extensive documentation. Applying for a visa requires consideration of the most suitable type for your circumstances and meeting the eligibility criteria. This varies between the different visa categories but will generally include an assessment of your qualifications, skills and English literacy and consideration of your personal circumstances such as your age, health, family, and character.

Australia’s migration laws and policies are constantly evolving and getting the right information and advice from the outset can avoid costly mistakes and delays in processing your visa application.

Skills Visa

Like all countries, the Australian economy needs a mix of workers across all sectors. When there is a skills shortage within the Australian population, the federal government expands the number of visas available to overseas workers who have the desired skills or education.

Employer-sponsored visas assist employers to address genuine skills shortages in the Australian labour market. Eligible employers may bring skilled workers into Australia through sponsorship if they are unable to source the workers they need locally.

In addition to short-term working visas, individuals who have in-demand skills are more likely to be granted permanent residency. A prospective migrant may be able to apply for permanent residency if they are qualified for employment in one of the in-demand occupations.  

Student Visa

A student may obtain a visa to study a course at an Australian high school, university, technical college, or other professional training course.

The Student Visa is a temporary visa that allows a student to live and study in Australia for the duration of their course of education. In addition, prospective students who are under 18, or otherwise need care and support, can have a relative apply to travel and stay with them as a guardian. This visa also allows the student to work in Australia (although international students need to demonstrate that they will arrive with sufficient funds to meet their daily needs for the duration of their course of study).

Eligibility Requirements

Before applying for a Student Visa, the prospective student must first seek admission as an international student to their chosen education provider. The prospective student must also apply for the subclass 500 Visa from the Home Affairs Department. To be eligible for a subclass 500 visa, a prospective student must:

  • be enrolled in a registered full-time course of study at a recognised Australian education provider;
  • produce a Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) certificate;
  • meet minimum English language requirements;
  • obtain Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) from an approved Australian health insurance provider that covers the entire period of the proposed stay in Australia;
  • demonstrate possession of sufficient funds to cover their living costs over the course of study;
  • meet health and character requirements; and
  • not have previous visa cancellations or a history of failing to comply with visa conditions.

Partner Visas

 One of the most common pathways for family immigration is through Partner Visas. Australian citizens, permanent residents, and eligible New Zealand citizens can sponsor their partners to come to Australia. There are several Partner Visa subclasses, including the temporary Partner Visa (subclass 820/801) and the permanent Partner Visa (subclass 100/309). The applicant and sponsor must demonstrate a genuine and ongoing relationship to be eligible for these visas.

Prospective Marriage Visa

The Prospective Marriage Visa (subclass 300) allows individuals to travel to Australia to marry their Australian fiancé/fiancée within nine months of the visa grant. After marriage, they can apply for a Partner Visa to remain in Australia.

Other Family Sponsorship

In addition to the above visa categories, Australia offers several other family-sponsored visas, such as the Dependent Child Visa (subclass 445), the Child Visa (subclass 802), and the Aged Parent Visa (subclass 804), among others.


The Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) is generally the first point of contact for reviewing decisions made by the Department of Home Affairs. Reviewable decisions may include the refusal to grant a visa, the cancellation of a visa, and determinations regarding skilled migration, business sponsorship and nominations.

The Tribunal takes an inquisitorial approach to its investigations and the appointed member will decide whether the decision was correctly made. Strict time limits apply to have a decision reviewed by the AAT and not all decisions may be reviewable.

If you need assistance, contact [email protected] or call 08 9221 6820 for expert legal advice.