19 June 2009

Australian visa application fees increase by 20 per cent

The Australian visa application fee increases have been formally announced, with the skilled migration fee set to increase by 20 per cent as of 1 July 2009.

Australian visa application fees

The skilled migration Australian visa application fee is set to rise by 20 per cent as of 1 July 2009.

The Australian Government reviews the Australian visa application fees on an annual basis, as part of the release of the Federal Budget release. Typically, fees will increase in accordance with changes in the Consumer Price Index, resulting in an increase of approx. AU$40 - AU$60 for the skilled migration visa application fee.

However, this year has seen a 20 per cent increase applied to some Australian visa application fees, including the skilled migration fee.

As a result, the skilled migration application fee will stand at AU$2,525 from 1 July 2009; a full AU$420 increase from the previous fee. With this in place, the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) is estimated to pull in an extra $402.3 million over the next four years. 

A full list of changes is available by downloading the Form 990i PDF from DIAC. It's vital that all applicants understand exactly how much their application will cost, because DIAC have stated:

"A visa application is not valid until the department receives the correct amount of the Visa Application Charge (VAC). If the correct amount is not paid, it will result in your visa application being delayed until the correct amount is received. Your visa application may be returned with a request that it be resent with the correct VAC amount."

Therefore, as applicants who do not pay the correct fee upon lodging their visa application stand the risk of having their application be subject to delays, it is important that they are fully aware of all costs before a lodgement is made. 

Potential migrants who are able to lodge their application so it is received by DIAC before 1 July, 2009, are advised to do, as all applicants who do so after this date will be required to pay over $400 more for their Australian visa application; a substantial increase on the overall costs for emigrating to Australia.

The Australian Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people with their applications for Australian visas.

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