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Solicitor applying for VISA 189. Skills assessment

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Have you looked at what information you need to apply for EOI - do you actually have to provide anything? (I guess you may have to provide a date for a positive skills assessment which wouldn't work)

 

Could you submit your EOI and wait to be invited for Visa - at the point of applying for the visa you should have been admitted and will then be able to produce the positive assessment?

I would contact WALPB and see what they say in relation to whether they will provide a positive skills assessment before being admitted.

Also I spoke to Mike Brean the other day at Destination Oz and he seemed to know his stuff - may be worth ringing him

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Yes, the EOI asks if you have a positive skills assessment and the date of it. I thought it would be ok to use the assessment letter confirming 3 exams (only) needed as the 'positive skills assessment'. However, Captain C advised me that there have been candidates who have lodged their EOIs claiming they had a positive skills assessment (as they were waiting for to pass an exam, for example and knew they would have passed it before being invited to apply). Then, when invited to apply, as the date of their positive skills assessment was later than the date of their EOI, their whole application was rejected and they weren't allowed to proceed, even though at the time of invitation, they did have a positive skills assessment!

 

This put me off 'risking it' and lodging the EOI whilst awaiting exam results. The WALPB website states they will provide a letter of eligibility but I haven't checked with them whether they will do this before all exams have been taken and presumably passed. Also, I've been unable to find out from DIBP whether an eligibility letter rather than confirmation of admission will count as a 'positive skills assessment'. The default answer from WALPB and DIBP is 'evidence of admission will be treated as a positive skills assessment' arghhhhh, I know this already!

 

Hopefully Killara will be able to shed some light on his previous experience with experienced practitioners and what constitutes a positive skills assessment ...or anyone else out there who has gone through the process. Thanks for the tip about Mike Brean - I will try and contact him.

 

Thanks

Edited by Libbyella

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Hello - a bit of a practical question, in terms of studying for the additional core subjects, is anyone aware if it's possible to get a student visa for this? I understand in QLD that you get up to 2 years to complete the core subjects. My thinking is it would be better to study in Australia whilst gaining paralegal work in Australian firms to build experience and connections, rather than doing the subjects in the UK (which I've read on another forum is possible. Southern Cross?)

 

Also, where the LLB and the LPC/BVC is assessed, does the admission board differentiate which courses at either undergrad or post grad level need studying? I'm a bit confused as I imagine that core subjects will be needed for both levels to cross qualify? Which would obviously mean enrollment at an undergrad and post grad institution. If I'm making this more complicated that it actually is apologies!

 

Certainly sounds like a very complicated and expensive route to migration!

 

Grateful for any light shed :)

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Hello - a bit of a practical question, in terms of studying for the additional core subjects, is anyone aware if it's possible to get a student visa for this? I understand in QLD that you get up to 2 years to complete the core subjects. My thinking is it would be better to study in Australia whilst gaining paralegal work in Australian firms to build experience and connections, rather than doing the subjects in the UK (which I've read on another forum is possible. Southern Cross?)

 

Also, where the LLB and the LPC/BVC is assessed, does the admission board differentiate which courses at either undergrad or post grad level need studying? I'm a bit confused as I imagine that core subjects will be needed for both levels to cross qualify? Which would obviously mean enrollment at an undergrad and post grad institution. If I'm making this more complicated that it actually is apologies!

 

Certainly sounds like a very complicated and expensive route to migration!

 

Grateful for any light shed :)

 

I'm not sure if you are qualified in UK? but my worry would be that there are lots of law graduates in Oz - same as in UK and its not going to be easy to secure a paralegal position. there are however more senior qualified positions available.

 

I have been told to study professional responsibility and accounts as practical subjects - I have studied these online and did exams at a local school.

 

I will start studying constitutional law in next few weeks at UNE - online and take exam in June.

 

Then you have to apply to be admitted (more money) and then attend admission ceremony in whatever state you applied to.

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I'm not sure if you are qualified in UK? but my worry would be that there are lots of law graduates in Oz - same as in UK and its not going to be easy to secure a paralegal position. there are however more senior qualified positions available.

 

I have been told to study professional responsibility and accounts as practical subjects - I have studied these online and did exams at a local school.

 

I will start studying constitutional law in next few weeks at UNE - online and take exam in June.

 

Then you have to apply to be admitted (more money) and then attend admission ceremony in whatever state you applied to.

 

Yes LLB and BVC (2007 and 2008 respectively) but no pupillage.

Can you tell me where you studied them? I'm looking to get costings of everything so that I can weigh it up. Good luck for your exams!

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Hi - I'm sure I've read somewhere that unless you are studying a full time course (ie all components), you don't qualify for a student visa. I could be wrong but it kind of makes sense that DIPB would want to close a loophole where someone could get a visa to live, study (and work limited hours as I understand it) when they are only studying one or two subjects when they aren't a full time student.

 

If you plan on taking the Juris Doctor full time, then I'm sure that would qualify. Racmac makes a really good point though about competing with local candidates.

 

Racmac and I are doing the same thing - 2 practical law subjects online at the College of Law and Constitutional Law online at the University of New England. Total cost is a painful £2,500 for the subjects, plus additional costs for text books and paying to take the exams in a UK venue.

 

If I was younger and had another option, I'd get myself over there, try to find a non-practising law job to earn whilst I studied out there. This seems to be the more common route for solicitors and barristers but not an option for me unfortunately :(

 

Hope this helps and good luck!

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Hi @Racmac & @Libbyella , we're currently in the process of submitted my husband's details to WA to see what extra subjects he will need to study for a positive skills assessment. We had previously been told he would need to sit his exams in Australia but from reading the post above it sounds like you've been able to take them in the UK? If so that would be a massive help!

 

With regards to the addtional subjects you had to both study, what sort of timescales have you come across in terms of how long it's taken you to study them all? I appreciate it may differ according to personal circumstances however on another posting someone had said that they encountered delays because universities would only allow them to to study a certain number per semester.


"The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page"

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Hi @Racmac & @Libbyella , we're currently in the process of submitted my husband's details to WA to see what extra subjects he will need to study for a positive skills assessment. We had previously been told he would need to sit his exams in Australia but from reading the post above it sounds like you've been able to take them in the UK? If so that would be a massive help!

 

With regards to the addtional subjects you had to both study, what sort of timescales have you come across in terms of how long it's taken you to study them all? I appreciate it may differ according to personal circumstances however on another posting someone had said that they encountered delays because universities would only allow them to to study a certain number per semester.

 

Hi @louisella. Both myself and libbyella have to study professional responsibility and accounts, these have been done on line with college of law. You can study these at any time, I did both together and took the exams after 8 weeks. There is also assignment for them. It's all done on line but you will need to find somewhere to take exams local to you, I went to a private school and did them there.

 

we also have to study constitutional law, the only one in WA that you can do online is Edith curran uni but it is split into 2 courses and double the price.

 

We are both studying CL at university of New England, [you will need to get permission from legal practice board] it's all online and they state that most of their students are online. We will have to take exams at their specified centre which for us will be Leeds.

 

I cant ant imagine working full time and studying more than CL at a time so beware of that, I'm findi it really tough. your hubby will need to check what trimesters the CL runs in, I don't think it runs in trimester 3 and trimester 1 has already started few weeks ago. So if you can't do it in trimester 2 then your going to have to wait until next Feb!

 

Feel free to ask any questions!

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Thanks so much for your reply @Racmac , it's really useful knowing others who are going along the same path. Best of luck to you and @Libbyella - we submitted the assessment form this morning to WA, hubby is only 1yr PQE so we're expecting the worst in terms of how many extra units he'll need to take! As a prelimanary, he contacted COL and University of New England to get an idea of their schedules....so now it's a case of wait and see untill we get the results mid April


"The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page"

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Hi. I have just come across this thread. Some very interesting advice above. Its nice to see that there are other people in the same boat who are experiencing the same difficulties, would be great to discuss this further with @Racmac @louisella @Libbyella. I have recently qualified as a UK Solicitor and in the process of gathering all of my docs to send for my Queensland Skills Assessment, I expect the news may not be great but need to get the ball rolling so that I can further review my options. Best scenario there may only be a few more subjects to undertake whilst I am in the UK.

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So today we've receive hubby's assessment back from the WA Legal Board - he's been advised he needs to study the following:

Admin

Constitutional Law

Company law

Civil Procedure

Evidence

Trust and Office Accounting

Ethics and Professional responsibility

 

It's more than we'd hoped so now it's time to see where he can study these whilst in the UK and calculate how much it'll all be before deciding whether to progress or not. Feeling slightly deflated as it feeling more and more likely that we may need to reconsider whether we go down this route


"The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page"

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So today we've receive hubby's assessment back from the WA Legal Board - he's been advised he needs to study the following:

Admin

Constitutional Law

Company law

Civil Procedure

Evidence

Trust and Office Accounting

Ethics and Professional responsibility

 

It's more than we'd hoped so now it's time to see where he can study these whilst in the UK and calculate how much it'll all be before deciding whether to progress or not. Feeling slightly deflated as it feeling more and more likely that we may need to reconsider whether we go down this route

 

That looks pretty much like my list of courses! Depressing reading isn't it after years of studying in the UK. I haven't embarked on it yet for costs reasons (and luckily OH is on skills list as well). I wish your husband all the best with it. Would be interested to know how he gets on as at some point I will have to swallow the fees and go back to study and exams.

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So today we've receive hubby's assessment back from the WA Legal Board - he's been advised he needs to study the following:

Admin

Constitutional Law

Company law

Civil Procedure

Evidence

Trust and Office Accounting

Ethics and Professional responsibility

 

It's more than we'd hoped so now it's time to see where he can study these whilst in the UK and calculate how much it'll all be before deciding whether to progress or not. Feeling slightly deflated as it feeling more and more likely that we may need to reconsider whether we go down this route

 

wow, that's a lot to study. Has he not studied these subjects a UK degree level? How many years qualified is he?

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wow, that's a lot to study. Has he not studied these subjects a UK degree level? How many years qualified is he?

 

Unfortunately doesn't seem to make any difference whether you have already studied them or not - I have done most of these at a very prestigious uni with lots of experience as a solicitor but still have a list that long. Seems that there are a lot of hurdles for UK solicitors. Although the profession is on the skills list, in reality there are large numbers of qualified solicitors looking for jobs - from what I have seen in QLD there isn't a shortage of lawyers so I don't think that the Law Society is that desperate to have people come over.

Hope this doesn't come across as negative! Just speaking from my experience over here and with the right profile / experience there should be opportunities.

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wow, that's a lot to study. Has he not studied these subjects a UK degree level? How many years qualified is he?

 

He has but as he's only 1PQE I think they must have felt he needs to do the units as well - pretty gutting as we'd anticipated perhaps 4 or 5. We'd including his higher rights units too but it doesn't seem to have made much of a difference. Our worry is age is against him as law is his second career - he'll turn 45 in 2018 so we'll lose points then and it'll definitely be game over then


"The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page"

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Unfortunately doesn't seem to make any difference whether you have already studied them or not - I have done most of these at a very prestigious uni with lots of experience as a solicitor but still have a list that long. Seems that there are a lot of hurdles for UK solicitors. Although the profession is on the skills list, in reality there are large numbers of qualified solicitors looking for jobs - from what I have seen in QLD there isn't a shortage of lawyers so I don't think that the Law Society is that desperate to have people come over.

Hope this doesn't come across as negative! Just speaking from my experience over here and with the right profile / experience there should be opportunities.

 

I can't agree with this based on my personal circumstances, I am 12 years qualified and have studied these subjects at uni and I have only been told to study constitutional law, professional responsibility and accounts. None of the others that the guy above has been told to do.

 

im sure I read that you can appeal on the basis of experience and appeal generally, it may be worth doing that to see if can reduce the amount of subjects?

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That looks pretty much like my list of courses! Depressing reading isn't it after years of studying in the UK. I haven't embarked on it yet for costs reasons (and luckily OH is on skills list as well). I wish your husband all the best with it. Would be interested to know how he gets on as at some point I will have to swallow the fees and go back to study and exams.

 

I'll keep you posted @Peachy as the next steps will be calculating how much it'll be and whether he has the time to do it all


"The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page"

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Hi - sorry to hear it isn't more positive news for Louisella. I agree with Racmac about appealing as I've seen on this and other forums people telling tales of successfully appealing and getting a few subjects removed. For my part, when applying for assessment, I really went to town on my experience (12 years PQE) and my intention to continue to specialise in family law (included this in the stat decs from 2 colleagues as well). The rules do say if you're more than 7 years PQE you may apply for exemptions, so if it were me, I'd appeal.

 

I also sympathise with the age thing ... I'm 45 this year and rushing to try to complete all subjects, lodge EOI and get the invite before the dreaded birthday happens.

 

Also, I did raise queries on this site if anyone knew whether you could lodge your EOI once you'd taken and passed your exams for the subjects you were assessed as having to take, which logically seems like you've met the criteria for a positive skills assessment. Colonel gave me sensible advice about the problem if the date of your admission is after the date of your EOI and even though when you lodge your EOI you can work out and be relatively confident that you'll be admitted prior to the invite, the DIBP could look back and see you lodged your EOI before being admitted, so would reject your application.

 

So, us solicitors are left with having to pay to have our skills assessed, pay for the subjects we need to take and then pay to be admitted, including going to Aus to attend the ceremony, and then and only then can we lodge our EOI ... which could result in no invite, so it was all a waste of time, effort and about £4k ...

 

I think of my cousin - an electrician, who applied for skilled migration as an electrician, got his visa and moved over with all his dependants, then worked doing something else for a time because he couldn't pass the local electrician tests. He's passed them now and it's all worked out but how lucky was he being able to complete his requalification in Aus! If only they'd let us do the same - maybe there's something in what Peachy says about Aus not wanting more lawyers :(

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Hi - sorry to hear it isn't more positive news for Louisella. I agree with Racmac about appealing as I've seen on this and other forums people telling tales of successfully appealing and getting a few subjects removed. For my part, when applying for assessment, I really went to town on my experience (12 years PQE) and my intention to continue to specialise in family law (included this in the stat decs from 2 colleagues as well). The rules do say if you're more than 7 years PQE you may apply for exemptions, so if it were me, I'd appeal.

 

I also sympathise with the age thing ... I'm 45 this year and rushing to try to complete all subjects, lodge EOI and get the invite before the dreaded birthday happens.

 

Also, I did raise queries on this site if anyone knew whether you could lodge your EOI once you'd taken and passed your exams for the subjects you were assessed as having to take, which logically seems like you've met the criteria for a positive skills assessment. Colonel gave me sensible advice about the problem if the date of your admission is after the date of your EOI and even though when you lodge your EOI you can work out and be relatively confident that you'll be admitted prior to the invite, the DIBP could look back and see you lodged your EOI before being admitted, so would reject your application.

 

So, us solicitors are left with having to pay to have our skills assessed, pay for the subjects we need to take and then pay to be admitted, including going to Aus to attend the ceremony, and then and only then can we lodge our EOI ... which could result in no invite, so it was all a waste of time, effort and about £4k ...

 

I think of my cousin - an electrician, who applied for skilled migration as an electrician, got his visa and moved over with all his dependants, then worked doing something else for a time because he couldn't pass the local electrician tests. He's passed them now and it's all worked out but how lucky was he being able to complete his requalification in Aus! If only they'd let us do the same - maybe there's something in what Peachy says about Aus not wanting more lawyers :(

 

But, at the end of the day, nobody is forcing you to move to Oz.

 

I would also refute that trades have it easier. The route for licensed trades is extremely hard as the licensing usually requires a log book to be completed on the job for 12 months. But, during this time they can not work unsupervised, instead can only work as a trade assistant, but many find it very hard to get work as a trade assistant to complete their log books as companies want fully licensed staff.

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Hi - sorry to hear it isn't more positive news for Louisella. I agree with Racmac about appealing as I've seen on this and other forums people telling tales of successfully appealing and getting a few subjects removed. For my part, when applying for assessment, I really went to town on my experience (12 years PQE) and my intention to continue to specialise in family law (included this in the stat decs from 2 colleagues as well). The rules do say if you're more than 7 years PQE you may apply for exemptions, so if it were me, I'd appeal.

 

I also sympathise with the age thing ... I'm 45 this year and rushing to try to complete all subjects, lodge EOI and get the invite before the dreaded birthday happens.

 

Also, I did raise queries on this site if anyone knew whether you could lodge your EOI once you'd taken and passed your exams for the subjects you were assessed as having to take, which logically seems like you've met the criteria for a positive skills assessment. Colonel gave me sensible advice about the problem if the date of your admission is after the date of your EOI and even though when you lodge your EOI you can work out and be relatively confident that you'll be admitted prior to the invite, the DIBP could look back and see you lodged your EOI before being admitted, so would reject your application.

 

So, us solicitors are left with having to pay to have our skills assessed, pay for the subjects we need to take and then pay to be admitted, including going to Aus to attend the ceremony, and then and only then can we lodge our EOI ... which could result in no invite, so it was all a waste of time, effort and about £4k ...

 

I think of my cousin - an electrician, who applied for skilled migration as an electrician, got his visa and moved over with all his dependants, then worked doing something else for a time because he couldn't pass the local electrician tests. He's passed them now and it's all worked out but how lucky was he being able to complete his requalification in Aus! If only they'd let us do the same - maybe there's something in what Peachy says about Aus not wanting more lawyers :(

 

Thanks @Libbyella , it seems like the solicitor route is one of the hardest (and most expensive) to go down. Re appealing I’m not sure whether that was directed more for Peachy as she seems to have more post qualified experience than my husband however I think it’s worth looking into for him. He's on 1PQE so it may not make any difference but he’s due to complete his civil higher rights in the next few weeks so whether that will have any consideration over the Civil Procedure unit I don’t know. We had included it in the paperwork but as he hadn’t actually sat the exam at that time they may have felt they needed to included the unit (this is just me hazarding a guess!)

 

I've read that too about issues re submitting the EOI prior to admission (it may well have been your post or perhaps on a different forum)

When are you due to complete your modules?


"The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page"

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1. Does anyone know whether all states will mark the same i.e. if we applied to NSW for an assessment, are they likely to come back with the same results?

 

2. Say husband studies the units specified by WA, is admitted and gains a positive skills assessment, if we then opt for the 190 state sponsored visa, are we restricted to only being able to apply to WA or can we use that positive skills assement for other states (e.g. NSW). I think previously it used to be that in order to practice in other states you had to be admitted to them individually (in addition to the state you were currently practising in) however I'm sure I read somewhere that this had been abolished.

Edited by louisella

"The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page"

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Below is what QLD says - it appears that once you are admitted you can practice throughout Australia but I haven't looked at the detail:

Practitioners admitted to other Australian jurisdictions

 

You should be aware that admission in Queensland via the Mutual Recognition (Queensland) Act 1992 is NO LONGER REQUIRED as Queensland is part of the national legal profession. Practitioners admitted to practise in any Australian jurisdiction are entitled to apply for a Queensland Practising Certificate without seeking admission in Queensland based on their admission in another Australian jurisdiction. You can obtain a practising certificate in Queensland from the Queensland Law Society (QLS) (as a solicitor) or Queensland Bar Association (as a barrister). I draw your attention to sections 5 to 8 of the Legal Profession Act 2007.

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1. Does anyone know whether all states will mark the same i.e. if we applied to NSW for an assessment, are they likely to come back with the same results?

 

2. Say husband studies the units specified by WA, is admitted and gains a positive skills assessment, if we then opt for the 190 state sponsored visa, are we restricted to only being able to apply to WA or can we use that positive skills assement for other states (e.g. NSW). I think previously it used to be that in order to practice in other states you had to be admitted to them individually (in addition to the state you were currently practising in) however I'm sure I read somewhere that this had been abolished.

 

My understanding is that they all follow the same principle rules but I'm guessing there is some room for human differences. As far as I know once you have been admitted in one state you can apply to any other state and its just a case of completing the admission process in the other state.

Did you consider appealing against the decision?

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Hi Peachy

 

Just wondering how it worked out for you. Your info at the foot of your last post says you got a visa grant on 02/03/15 - does that mean you are now in Oz and working as a solicitor? If so, how did you complete your requalification and did you go on a 189?

 

I'm particularly interested because I'm looking at other options to a 189 as my 45th birthday approaches and I might have to pursue a different route.

 

Hope to hear it's all worked out for you :)

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Hi Peachy

 

Just wondering how it worked out for you. Your info at the foot of your last post says you got a visa grant on 02/03/15 - does that mean you are now in Oz and working as a solicitor? If so, how did you complete your requalification and did you go on a 189?

 

I'm particularly interested because I'm looking at other options to a 189 as my 45th birthday approaches and I might have to pursue a different route.

 

Hope to hear it's all worked out for you :)

 

Hi

I have been extremely lucky and got PR via my husband who is a social worker. I haven't embarked on the conversion course yet because I am not sure whether I am to return to private practice. I have managed to find a job that I love in a similar field but outside the private sector so I enjoy the benefits of flexi time and no more costs and time targets! I may do the courses to keep my options open in the future.

Sorry that I can't help you - I am keeping an eye on this thread because I may go down the route of qualifying over here at some point.

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