Embassy of Australia
United States of America

Visas and migration

Visas, Immigration and Citizenship 

If you have the skills, Australia has the lifestyle. If you like the idea of Australia\'s climate and lifestyle and are looking for a career challenge in a country with lots of opportunities—take the next step and find out more about Australia's skilled working visas. Your journey starts when you submit an expression of interest for a skilled visa through SkillSelect. By using SkillSelect the Australian Government could invite you to lodge a visa application or you could be nominated by an Australian or state and territory government. Find out what you need to do to complete your expression of interest through SkillSelect.

Changes to skilled visa programmes

On 18 April 2017, the Government announced a number of reforms to Australia’s temporary and permanent skilled visa programmes. Implementation of the reforms commenced on 19 April 2017 and will be completed by March 2018. 

In addition to the reforms impacting the Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 457) which have already been implemented on 19 April 2017, there are a number of further changes which will take effect on 1 July 2017.

These changes will specifically impact on the following temporary and permanent skilled migration programmes:

  • Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 457)
  • Employer Nomination Scheme visa (subclass 186)
  • Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme visa (subclass 187)
  • Skilled Independent visa (subclass 189) – including NZ pathway
  • Skilled Nominated visa (subclass 190)
  • Skilled Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 489).

For information about these reforms visit the Department of Immigration and Border Protection website.


Visa Price Increase from 1 July 2017

As part of the 2017-18 Budget, the Government announced a number of changes to existing Visa Application Charges (VACs).

From 1 July 2017 all current VACs will be indexed annually in line with the forecast Consumer Price Index (CPI) and rounded to the nearest $5.

A fact sheet describing the pricing changes to all affected visa subclasses is available now on the Department’s website.

The VACs will be updated by 2% CPI rate increase in the fees and charges section of the Department’s website from 1 July 2017.


Changes to temporary visas (subclasses 400, 401, 402 and 403) from 19 November 2016

From 19 November 2016, a number of temporary visas were closed to new applications and four new visa subclasses were introduced.

Further details about the new temporary activity visa framework are available at the Department of Immigration and Border Protection website.


Changes to Member of the Family Unit definition from 19 November 2016

The definition of Member of the Family Unit (MoFU) has changed for applications made on and after 19 November 2016, where MoFU will now be limited to direct family members. 

The change applies to permanent visa subclasses and some provisional and temporary visa subclasses.  The change does not apply to refugee, humanitarian or protection visas. 

Further details about the changes to MoFU arrangements are available at the Department of Immigration and Border Protection website.


Changes to Transit Visa Lodgement from 1 July 2016

Effective from 1 July 2016, all Australian Transit (subclass 771) visa applications for people living in the USA or working with USA cruise line companies will be processed in the Department of Immigration and Border Protection office in Ottawa, Canada. 

To avoid delays in processing of your Transit visa application, please lodge via fax or mail to the Ottawa office:

Fax: +1 613 366 3070


Department of Immigration and Border Protection

Australian High Commission

50 O'Connor Street, Suite 710

Ottawa, Ontario, K1P 6L2, Canada

For further information, please call the Americas Service Centre in Canada.


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