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Jeffster

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Jeffster last won the day on August 11 2010

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About Jeffster

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  1. Without wanting to get you down, forget about getting a job until you are here AND have PR, particularly with your profession. Even whilst on a Bridging Visa (where you are eligible to work) and being in Australia I have got ONE job in 3 1/2 years after hundreds of applications. They basically will bin your application unless it says you HAVE PR or citizenship. For transient occupations (cooking, hairdressing) it is not a problem, professionals - IT, engineering etc. they will not take the risk. Also the economy is heading down the toilet very quickly at the moment thanks to Labor morons and the job market is very tough. You can always apply and ask to have your details kept on record - then call them up when you arrive, you might get lucky... Sorry to be bearer of bad news.
  2. Jeffster

    New Category 5's - Where are you now?

    Yes, I had to provide meds & PC (again!), military discharge certificate and then they made my sister (my sponsor) provide her forms and evidence again, presumably because it had been so long since the original application. This raises an interesting question that my sister asked me - if a sponsor is obliged to assist / support an onshore applicant for 2 years from PR grant date then who is responsible for the X number of years they have to wait on the Bridging Visa?
  3. Jeffster

    New Category 5's - Where are you now?

    PR approved today after long and painful wait of nearly three and a half years. See details below.
  4. Not quite... After 1274 days of waiting I finally got my grant today. I guess I am the last then. Great, what a record to have. It has been a horrible journey and experience which I am going to document and share and I felt absolutely nothing when my agent called with the "great news" this morning. 'Twas all so avoidable as well but thanks to a greedy, incompetent, miserable excuse of a Government Department that claims "people our business" they have piled misery on suffering on agony for far too many people. Thanks to all those here who have tried to keep spirits up and hope alive.
  5. Jeffster

    New Category 5's - Where are you now?

    3 years and 3 months and finally my agent calls me this morning to tell me I have a CO and need to resubmit meds & PC! I'm sure I'll wake up in a few minutes and find it was just a dream.
  6. Not sure why. Don't even know what group I'm in any more, I decided to forget about this whole thing a while back as it was too much stress and just wait until the day I heard from DIAC.
  7. Actually I'm still waiting, over 3 years now. My application was sent 2nd December 2008, onshore, online. Can't be too much longer from the sounds of things.
  8. Exactly. I've been down this road before and it is one of the key issues in this ongoing facade. As a BVA/BVB holder you can apply for ENS as offshore only (unless your last substantive visa was within the last 28 days) meaning on receiving the visa you have to leave the country for a week, all up about another $3000 with flights, hotel, PC & Meds (again) etc. Also the "may be eligible for fee-free" is a very big may. I cannot get a straight answer out of anyone. DIAC are adamant that a new application = new fee and stated this in a July release. Neither I nor my agent can get a straight answer out of them. DIAC encourages those stuck in the pipeline to seek ENS yet make it impossibly difficult to do this - my employer is willing to sponsor but would not be too happy that I would be off for a week. I have suggested numerous times that the solution is for those who have worked for more than 6 months / 1year for one employer, in a job they are qualiied for (have accrediation), that is on SOL or whatever list was applicable at the time of their application, have payslips and tax return and their employer is willing to sponsor should be allowed to transfer their application to ENS - no more payments, no new PC's / meds, no offshore crap - just supply the relevant documents to DIAC and the application goes to Cat 1. Simple. The biggest joke is that everyone I know who got their PR quickly (Cat 1/2) is NOT working in their nominated occupation, either by choice or not, and those who are stuck in the pipeline ALL have stable jobs working in their nominated occupation.
  9. Peter contacted me as well but I won't be on air as I'm in a different city :sad: He did get a copy of the complaints to GFU & the Ombudsman so hopefuly he will add the arguments in there as well to the program. PS: TWO YEARS TODAY!
  10. Jeffster

    Anyone had a response from DIAC about VAC refund?

    This was the response I got from them about refunds: "I note the suggestions you have made in relation to the refunding and transfer of the Visa Application Charge (VAC) and the comparison made with migration programs in two other countries. It is important to note that the refund of the VAC is governed by Migration Regulations. The legislation only allows the refund of the VAC in certain limited circumstances. These requirements remain the same as when you applied for skilled migration. Where an applicant makes the decision to withdraw their application, the VAC is generally not refundable. " It also took them a lot longer than 10 days to reply to me! I expect you will get the same response, word-for-word. You might want to point out to the Ombudsman (when you complain) that although VAC requirements are the same as when we applied the waiting times and conditions have changed vastly and that VAC policy should therefore also have changed. To get any kind of good repsonse from the Ombudsman you need to show that the change in policy / lack of change in policy has created some kind of inequity, unfairness and / or unforeseen circumstance which should be easy!
  11. Jeffster

    A way to get your story out

    This came my way recently: "The hit television show 'Relocation: Phil Down Under' is looking for British Ex-Pats who are now living and successfully working in Australia. Phil Spencer of Location Location Location is heading to Australia for the new series of his hit television show 'Relocation: Phil Down Under.' Not only will Phil be helping Brits with their property search but he will also be exploring Australia's job market. If you have your own success story or you work in an interesting job please get in touch with: Elli Metcalfe on elli.metcalfe@iwcmedia.co.uk or Helen Clucas on helen.clucas@iwcmedia.co.uk " Don't know about success story but I reckon there are plenty of nightmare stories from people here. Perhaps if enough of us get in touch it might embarass the Government enough and get some of the media in the UK on the case.
  12. Jeffster

    Complaint to Ombudsman

    Yes you definitely have a case. I have been writing another letter that includes this complaint, I will post it here for others to copy when finished. You need to highlight that these are administrative deficiencies by DIAC and that their policy changes have caused unreasonable, unfair and harsh consequences on you. The Ombudsman must investigate these issues. PCC validity is a big issue - DIAC have caused people to be paying twice for something which is not their fault - this is one of the unintended consequences of legal change that the Ombudsman has to look at and advise DIAC to make amendments.
  13. Jeffster

    Complaint to Ombudsman

    Finally, a response from DIAC GFU to the complaint. It is as expected, a waste of time even reading it. It answers nothing, it tells us nothing we don't already know and is largely a cut and paste job: "I am writing in response to your letter of the 18 August 2010 to the Commonwealth Ombudsman regarding the processing of skilled migration applications. The skilled migration program is designed to meet the needs of the Australian labour market and strengthen the whole economy. As such requirements for skilled migration have always changed to reflect the prevailing economic conditions of the time. The most recent changes to the program are designed to make skilled migration more responsive and better placed to meet Australia’s future skills needs. The Department of Immigration and Citizenship appreciates that changes to the skilled migration program have an impact on applicants; however adjustments still need to be made to the program to provide maximum benefit to Australia. In response to the reforms announced on 8 February 2010, there has been extensive engagement to inform both clients and stakeholders. Stakeholders were informed of the changes as they were introduced and information sessions have been held across Australia for migration agents, students, education providers, and community groups. Information about the GSM program has been updated on the Department’s website at: What's New? Recent Changes in General Skilled Migration I note the suggestions you have made in relation to the refunding and transfer of the Visa Application Charge (VAC) and the comparison made with migration programs in two other countries. It is important to note that the refund of the VAC is governed by Migration Regulations. The legislation only allows the refund of the VAC in certain limited circumstances. These requirements remain the same as when you applied for skilled migration. Where an applicant makes the decision to withdraw their application, the VAC is generally not refundable. Your letter also noted concerns about processing times. In an environment where there are many more applicants for skilled migration than there are places in the program, it is inevitable that processing times for some applicants will be lengthy. A new Direction in processing priority for skilled migration was introduced in July 2010. The Direction outlines the order in which applications are processed, with priority going to those who will bring the most benefit to Australia. The entire package of reforms announced on 8 February 2010, including the processing priority direction, will help in addressing issues around processing times and uncertainty for applicants. I hope this information is helpful. Regards, Karin Maier Independent Skilled Migration Policy Mailbox Department of Immigration and Citizenship people our business *** PLEASE DO NOT RESPOND TO THIS EMAIL AS EMAILS TO THIS MAILBOX WILL NOT BE RESPONDED TO ***" There are a few things that really get my goat here: "These requirements [for VAC refund] remain the same as when you applied for skilled migration" Yes but the processing times, priorities, requirements etc. have been CHANGED - LOTS OF TIMES!!!! So why hasn't this policy changed? "In an environment where there are many more applicants for skilled migration than there are places in the program, it is inevitable that processing times for some applicants will be lengthy." It wasn't "inevitable" when we applied was it? "The entire package of reforms announced on 8 February 2010, including the processing priority direction, will help in addressing issues around processing times and uncertainty for applicants." No it hasn't! Many of us are even MORE uncertain now than we were then!!! I don't even know what priority group I am in let alone when I expect to be processed so how the hell does that make address issues of uncertainty??? GRRRRRRRR :arghh: !!!!! I'm a bit too angry at the moment to think straight.
  14. Jeffster

    Visa Capping - Senate Inquiry

    Obviously there is no cost auditing here then! Reminds me of that line from Independence Day when he is talking about Government spending "You don't actually think they spend $20,000 on a hammer, $30,000 on a toilet seat, do you?" The need for DIAC to be investigated top to toe financially and operationally is glaringly obvious. Amazing, wouldn't say no to a free trip to France. Still the French can do a better job with 338 fewer people working 35 hour weeks...
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