Report: NSW Onshore Partner Application Processing Time Est: 15 months - Page 4

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Report: NSW Onshore Partner Application Processing Time Est: 15 months - Page 4


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  #31 (permalink)  
Old 03-11-2013, 07:46 AM
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Originally Posted by MarkNortham View Post
It occurs to me that a collective body of visa applicants and those who care about the rights of visa applicants may be in order. It's simply too easy to deliver poor service when for most people it's a one-shot deal and they have no continuing involvement with the government after the visa is granted. I would be happy to be involved with such an organisation, but for it to have credibility it should be led by those directly affected by the issue.
Having not even submitted my application yet, it already makes me angry that the anticipated waiting period will be that long especially after having to save up so much money for the initial application.

Coming back to the original thought, in my opinion it is long overdue that such a body is established. How is it even possible that an organization that deals with highly sensitive issues like DIAC has to answer to no one?

Even if there might be COs out there who are slow and lazy, I can only assume that the system itself is fault and the issue lies with workloads (aka too many applications assigned to one CO - they must be frustrated too!!). How can there be an enormous increase in fees if the money doesn't go back into the system, for example into hiring more staff or making the process more efficient and transparent? This is simply unjustifiable! Where DOES the money go??

On top of that, making people wait and putting their life on hold only hurts the system in the end. With that many people waiting in Australia, many of them not able to work due to restrictions or simply not able to find employment because of the temporary character of bridging visas (and even the temporary partner visa once it is issued) puts many in a position that makes it more likely to have to rely on the welfare system in the future.

Every other organisation or body has to answer to a controlling body, why is there no possibility to do anything about how DIAC works? I have to agree with Kantata, if this was a private coorporation they would be bankrupt. If they can't handle the flood of applications there are many ways of improve the system! Not only employing more people, also more informations for applicants on how to fill out forms correctly and how to put together an application, so COs don't have to sort through paperwork that is different for every application!

Having said that, I think establishing such a body that tries to make the issue more public and change how things are being handled must come from Australians first, not only people who are personally effected but also people that just see that it is an issue. Even though most people who got their Visa are probably just glad and don't ever want to hear about it again, I'm sure there are plenty who would be willing to be part of this after they have their Visa in their hands. I agree that everyone who is still in the application process probably just doesn't want to be publicly involved in making a fuss.

It is also a big problem for Immigration Agents I assume because they need to provide a service and, I assume, are dealing with a lot of unsatisfied customers as well if DIAC makes it impossible to speed up applications! Would it make sense to have someone speak up from that side? There would surely be a lot of backup from everyone affected? Even though, I think as a migration agent you actually are affected directly as well, because DIAC makes it hard to deliver a service, if they don't even make a difference in processing times for DR applications?

Sorry for having a rant, but things have to change!

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  #32 (permalink)  
Old 03-16-2013, 11:25 AM
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I just wanted to add my perspective on the waiting time - or at least: how I deal with it (and how I can't, lol).

My partner and I have always said: as long as they say "yes" and treat our case fairly, I don't care how long they take. I can wait years for a "yes". I can't wait a week for a "no" but let's just not think about that one yet. We are preparing for a 15 month wait just because we can. This makes it slightly more bearable I think.

Having said that, almost two months after applying now I seem to have run into a small issue with the waiting time. You see, I'm on Bridging Visa A and that means if I expect fifteen months, by the time I'd be able to see my family and friends in The Netherlands again it will have been 1,5 years. That is all good and well - I made my decision, I called the shot, I chose a life with my partner in Australia over my friends and family at home and I stand by that choice. I am happy.

But I guess in the light of one of my best friends soon giving birth to her first child (and that'll be the first time any of my friends has a baby) I guess I just got gloomy. She was a huge part of my life before we both met our partners and of course life is what it is and she is starting a family and I am starting over - but we keep in close touch. I won't be there when her daughter is born and at the rate of the waiting game for the visa I won't see her daughter until she's over 1 year old. I can't ask her to travel to Australia, 28 hour flight pregnant or with a baby - and I can't really go to DIAC and claim my friend having a healthy child is an emergency that requires Bridging Visa B.

I guess I just started realizing how bittersweet it really is. First I was like - HAH, I CAN'T even leave Australia now!... and now almost two months later it's sinking in. It may sound cruel - I don't miss my family and friends as much as I would miss my partner, I know I made the right call, but the whole "we'll take 15 months... and you can't go abroad even once unless someone's dying or dead" is a bit much for me.

Maybe last week just made me nostalgic. Three birthdays of people I used to see all the time (my dad, my roommate and my cat who now lives with a friend there), my friend getting ready to give birth... it felt kind of cruel in light of those things that I can't go see them at all unless I absolutely have to. I would think allowing people one two/three week exit-entry wouldn't hurt? But who am I.

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__________________
From: The Netherlands
Visa Sub: 820 Partner Temp Onshore (De Facto)
Applied: 23 January 2013 (front loaded)
Application: Paper
Agent: No

Case Officer Assigned: 23 December 2013
Request for More Information: 19 May 2014
Requested Information: Australian Federal Police Check
Supplied on: 26 May 2014
Visa Granted: 4 June 2014


Permanent Stage Application: 22 January 2015
PERMANENT PARTNER (801) GRANTED ON 18 MAY 2015 - WE DID IT!

  #33 (permalink)  
Old 03-16-2013, 12:06 PM
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Hi Nelly -

Great post. One thing however - the grounds for requesting a BV-B don't have to be life & death - the key phrase is "substantial reason for travel".

I've included some language from DIAC's policy manual (PAM3) re: assessing the need to travel - I hope it might be of some help to you!

Best,

Mark Northam

From DIAC PAM3 re: BV-B, assessing the need to travel:


52 About the requirements

Clause 020.212(2), (3), (4) and (5) all require that the delegated officer must be satisfied that, at the time of application, the BVB applicant's reasons for wishing to leave and re-enter Australia (to travel) are substantial. The BVB applicant must continue to satisfy this requirement at the time of decision (020.221).





53 Substantial reason and genuine need for travel

The migration legislation does not define "substantial" in the BVB context. The ordinary dictionary meanings of "substantial" that are relevant in this context are "real", "actual", "important", "of real worth or value". Officers must bear in mind the above dictionary meanings of "substantial" and apply them in two ways to the assessment of the criterion:

is the reason for wishing to travel substantial that is, is it important, of real worth or value? and
is the need to travel genuine that is, is it real and actual?
It is departmental policy that both these aspects are assessed and satisfied. For example, if a person applied for a BVB on the basis that their parent was very sick they would have a substantial reason for wishing to travel. However, if an investigation of the department's systems indicated that the parent was in Australia there would not be an associated genuine need to leave Australia.

However, departmental policy should not be applied inflexibly and each application should be assessed on its individual merits.





54 Substantial reason for wishing to travel

A substantial reason for wishing to travel would include travel associated with the person's:

employment, business or education - for example:
attending work or study conferences
participating in business negotiations or meetings
undertaking academic research or presenting papers
family, other relatives or other person important to the person - for example:
visiting a seriously ill family member, relative or close friend
attending the wedding, or other culturally important event, of a family member relative or close friend
attending the funeral of a family member, relative or close friend
substantive visa application - for example:
undergoing medical treatment for an existing condition
obtaining documentation needed to satisfy legal criteria
resolving custody issues relating to a claimed family unit member
travelling outside Australia for personal reasons (including having a holiday) because the processing or review of their substantive visa application has been protracted.
The above examples are given as a guide to the types of reasons that could be considered and are not exhaustive. Officers must use their judgment when deciding if they are satisfied that the person's reasons for wishing to travel are substantial and document the reasons for their decision.
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  #34 (permalink)  
Old 03-16-2013, 07:24 PM
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Nelly, it may not be a wedding or a funeral, but I would certainly think the birth of a baby is just as important a milestone, and so would qualify. Why not try applying for a BVB?

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Visa Granted: January 2014.
Visa #2: Subclass 820 (From PMV).
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  #35 (permalink)  
Old 03-17-2013, 10:08 AM
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Thank you both for your advice and support - I might actually do that: at least shortly after the baby is born, I want to see the little girl while she is still little I hope DIAC will see the emotional value of the visit, too. It's already strange enough to picture I won't be an active part of one of my best friends' baby girl's life, it would be heartbreaking to not be there for her at least when she's just had her. I couldn't have waited 15 months for that!

CollegeGirl likes this.
__________________
From: The Netherlands
Visa Sub: 820 Partner Temp Onshore (De Facto)
Applied: 23 January 2013 (front loaded)
Application: Paper
Agent: No

Case Officer Assigned: 23 December 2013
Request for More Information: 19 May 2014
Requested Information: Australian Federal Police Check
Supplied on: 26 May 2014
Visa Granted: 4 June 2014


Permanent Stage Application: 22 January 2015
PERMANENT PARTNER (801) GRANTED ON 18 MAY 2015 - WE DID IT!

  #36 (permalink)  
Old 03-17-2013, 11:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nelly87 View Post
I just wanted to add my perspective on the waiting time - or at least: how I deal with it (and how I can't, lol).

My partner and I have always said: as long as they say "yes" and treat our case fairly, I don't care how long they take. I can wait years for a "yes". I can't wait a week for a "no" but let's just not think about that one yet. We are preparing for a 15 month wait just because we can. This makes it slightly more bearable I think.

Having said that, almost two months after applying now I seem to have run into a small issue with the waiting time. You see, I'm on Bridging Visa A and that means if I expect fifteen months, by the time I'd be able to see my family and friends in The Netherlands again it will have been 1,5 years. That is all good and well - I made my decision, I called the shot, I chose a life with my partner in Australia over my friends and family at home and I stand by that choice. I am happy.

But I guess in the light of one of my best friends soon giving birth to her first child (and that'll be the first time any of my friends has a baby) I guess I just got gloomy. She was a huge part of my life before we both met our partners and of course life is what it is and she is starting a family and I am starting over - but we keep in close touch. I won't be there when her daughter is born and at the rate of the waiting game for the visa I won't see her daughter until she's over 1 year old. I can't ask her to travel to Australia, 28 hour flight pregnant or with a baby - and I can't really go to DIAC and claim my friend having a healthy child is an emergency that requires Bridging Visa B.

I guess I just started realizing how bittersweet it really is. First I was like - HAH, I CAN'T even leave Australia now!... and now almost two months later it's sinking in. It may sound cruel - I don't miss my family and friends as much as I would miss my partner, I know I made the right call, but the whole "we'll take 15 months... and you can't go abroad even once unless someone's dying or dead" is a bit much for me.

Maybe last week just made me nostalgic. Three birthdays of people I used to see all the time (my dad, my roommate and my cat who now lives with a friend there), my friend getting ready to give birth... it felt kind of cruel in light of those things that I can't go see them at all unless I absolutely have to. I would think allowing people one two/three week exit-entry wouldn't hurt? But who am I.
Amen to that. I'm at that point where I'm on the exact same set of mind. It's really hard to think you have to put your life on hold for so long.
And like my husband said: "why do they eve need to tell us not to get out of the country? what difference does that make to the process?"

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  #37 (permalink)  
Old 03-17-2013, 03:36 PM
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@KrystHell - Yes, absolutely! What difference does staying put in Australia make to the process? I wonder what's the logic behind the no-travel-permitted rule.. It might be okay for applicants whom found work in Australia, but those without work, what do they do all day?

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  #38 (permalink)  
Old 03-17-2013, 04:12 PM
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Hi folks
I'm going to play ''devils advocate'' and present a very different point of view. I know it will not be popular on this forum, but I think its important to have some balance and perspective in the discussion. Please hear me out before you throw stones...!

Firstly I will point out that I have been through the process. My partner (husband) is from a high risk country & is currently on 820. The visa application process was one of the most stressful & emotionally draining things I've ever been through. I've been through all the waiting & uncertainty, and I understand everything everyone has said so far.

HOWEVER to be honest I have never considered that my partner has a ''right'' to be in Australia. I don't think any migrant has a ''right'' to come here just because they happened to develop a relationship with an Australian. Likewise I don't think my husband necessarily has a ''right'' to become a Permanent Resident, or even have a ''right'' to Citizenship. I feel we (myself & my partner) have been given a great privilege to be able to have the opportunity to be live together and create a life here. Something which I don't take for granted, and I am extremely grateful for having the possibility at all. Not every country allows this..

Continuing on from this, I think people should understand that the Government needs to balance the desires of migrants to come here against the needs of the greater Australian public -- for infrastructure & services (like roads, railways, water infrastructure, hospitals, schools etc). We have a growing population but we don't have unlimited resources. This is one of the reasons why there have to be quotas. The needs of Australians must come first before migrants (otherwise you really will have protests & public outcry -- but not for those of us with immigrant partners, but rather against us!). Population increases have to be carefully planned. I know sometimes we feel ''but its only one more'', but when you have thousands upon thousands of people wanting to migrate it makes a difference. Right now there there is enormous demand for migration to Australia particularly with the current global economic situation -- and like any supply/demand, if there is more demand (applications) than supply (quota) then waiting/processing periods will naturally be pushed out.

I think its really easy for us just to say that DIAC should employ more staff etc to solve processing timelines -- but again, the Government does not have a bottomless bucket of taxpayer funds to pay for everything we want. Once a year at budget time, each Department has to ''compete'' with all the other Departments for taxpayer money. So Immigration has to compete with Health, with Education, with Infrastructure for tax funds. (You should be able to find these budget presentations somewhere on public record). Allocating more money to Immigration logically means less money for other areas because there is a limited bucket of money. The cost of a new CO could possibly pay for a new hospital nurse, or a new teacher. Particularly with the global downturn, you will find the Government hesitant to allocate more money for something like Immigration when they are trying the reduce spending (otherwise the other option is raising taxes!! That really would not make Australians happy).

If you were to present this to the average Australian -- that the processing of visas for migrants was allocated more money & going to use up more of their money to the detriment of schools and hospitals and roads for Australians...... well you can imagine how that would go down with the public. Someone mentioned going to the media/newspapers/current affairs shows to speak out about ''migrant rights'' etc -- but do you really think they will present the story how you would like it? (Particularly shows like Today Tonight??) I have my doubts.

The other thing about visa applications costs... it is extremely expensive, yes. Its a big hit to our bank balance. Huge. HOWEVER, again, should the Australian people have to pay for my husband's visa costs with their tax money? Or should I? To be honest, although its an enormous cost, I think if I want my husband here then it should be my responsibility to pay for the total cost involved. Not the Australian people. I don't think the visa costs we pay cover the processing costs to the Government. Its hugely expensive to run a Government department -- its not just salaries for COs, its management costs, its overhead costs (eg IT, building leases, utilities, phones, training, security etc). We all know that our all our household bills are increasing all the time, likewise the costs to DIAC would too. Also its not just DIAC that we're talking about -- its a joint process with Centrelink, ASIO, Health, AFP, Embassies, all playing a part in our partners visa processing (and they have their own salaries & overheads to pay for) and these other agencies also have their own priorities and workloads which I suspect may push out timelines if they're under-resourced.

So.... yeah. This is just another perspective to think about. I think sometimes we are so emotionally caught up in our own situation that we don't forget about the other side of the story. There's always another side to the story.

Wish you all the best.

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Last edited by theskyisblue; 03-17-2013 at 04:16 PM.

  #39 (permalink)  
Old 03-17-2013, 05:05 PM
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So we just have to be happy to pay thousands of dollars, not to be replied to our emails, not to bother them with questions, to allow extensions of processing times whenever they want and put our lives on hold for unknown amount of time and give them shoulder for crying in the end? Sorry, but your perspective of other side of the story is just salt on my wound!

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  #40 (permalink)  
Old 03-17-2013, 10:30 PM
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Originally Posted by sunnysmile View Post
So we just have to be happy to pay thousands of dollars, not to be replied to our emails, not to bother them with questions, to allow extensions of processing times whenever they want and put our lives on hold for unknown amount of time and give them shoulder for crying in the end? Sorry, but your perspective of other side of the story is just salt on my wound!
I have to agree with her to a certain extent.
It is a big privilege to be living in Australia. Lets not forget that not only is the lifestyle fantastic, but it also is a country which has barely been affected by the economic downturn over the past few years,

The extension of processing time could also be a result of a lot more applications being received. Let's face it, a lot of people have been trying to get into Australia on the same grounds as us. A lot of people fake relationships to try and be allowed to stay here because they can live a better life. It ends up affecting people like you and all the others on this forum. Is it fair? Not really, but can you blame them for spending more time processing applications? For all we know, it could just be because they're trying to go through all the evidence more thoroughly.

The one thing I still don't understand though is their need to prevent people from living the country while they're on a bridging visa. The bridging visa is a result of longer processing times. If you have allowed someone to stay in the country and that person has a valid application for a permanent visa, I do not see the point of telling them they cannot travel while their application is being assessed. Does anyone have a valid explanation on this particular issue? You'd think having to assess applications for BVBs as well as the main visa application would be a bit of a waste of time...

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