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Global Headlines: UK and Australia

December 20, 2017

UK’s Latest Immigration Changes End 2017 on a High Note. Since August 2017, the UK has been incrementally rolling out new immigration laws and policies in the wake of Brexit which has had a significant impact on EU migration. Most recently, on December 7, 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union has ruled that any dual EU-British citizen will be able to move freely within the EU. Additionally, the UK government doubled the Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visas numbers to 2,000 per annum, and students are now eligible to switch to Tier 2 visa categories after completing their courses, without having to wait for their final results.

Australia Implements 10-Year Bar for Visa Applications with Incorrect Information. On November 18, 2017, Australia increased its previous 1-3 year ban for fraudulent information found in Visa Applications and implemented a 10-year bar from re-application. Findings of inaccurate statements, omissions of fact, false documentation, work experience claims, or false English proficiency scores can result in a ten-year ban from the entering the country. The applicable visa categories include student visas, family visas, skilled migration classes and any related application made by members of the primary applicant’s family. As even unintentional errors may result in serious immigration consequences, EIG strongly recommends all potential applicants to consult with our team to ensure that all submitted applications are both accurate and comprehensive.

Marriage Equality Allows for New Visa Changes in Australia. Same-sex couples are now eligible to apply for partner visas and prospective marriage visas in Australia. Previously, individuals could only apply as “de facto partners” which is when individuals have been living with their significant other for several months and required greater hurdles than marriage-based visas.