I was wondering if someone could help me out. I am wanting to move to Australia.
This is a little about my situation. I am a 22 year-old US citizen. For three years I lived with a lady from my church, and although I am not related to her in any way, I consider her my mom. She got married to a man in Australia that she met on the internet and moved there to live with him. Now, I want to move over there to be with my 'parents'. But again, they are not my real parents. Yet all I can find is that you have to have a spouse visa, study visa, work visa, or travel visa to move over there. Neither of those apply to my situation. I'm not getting married to anyone there, I'm not in school, the only jobs I have had are part-time/full-time jobs in retail stores and a travel visa is only good for a few months. So does this mean that there is no way for me to just go over there and live with them, and maybe get a part-time (or full-time) job - just enough to help cover the costs of my living expenses? If anyone has any answers, I would appreciate any feedback. Thank you.
Have you considered the option of starting your own life now? You're 22 years old... time to leave the nest...
I wouldn't be living with them for long. I would try to find my own place, but I would like to have the ability to go visit them whenever I wanted. To have them nearby - and they want me there as well. We just don't know how to go about it. They are the only 'family' I have so I don't really want to be in a different country - different city or state - no problem. And if I had a way to move over there, it's not like I would be leaving anything or anyone behind. I have no ties where I am now.
There are certainly ways for you to emigrate to Australia without using a family reunification visa. At your age, it's easier than when you're older too. The process can take a while, but if you really want to make it here and don't have a criminal record or something like that, then it should be quite doable.
I'd suggest that come to Australia on a short term visit first to see if you *really* want to live here or not. Maybe you'll decide it's not for you once you get here That is certainly much easier to achieve than permanent residency. The first option is to come in on a tourist visa (3 months is no problem at all). The next option would be to come over on a Work and Holiday visa, which will allow a 12 month stay and temporary employment.
Just going to another country and living there is not really how things work. Some people get on leaky little boats in an attempt to live in Australia and then end up in detention on a remote island for years. You're in a relatively privileged position being a US citizen, but you are not an Australian citizen and as such will have to jump through hoops to get here. Such is life unfortunately.
I'm an immigrant in Australia too by the way (came on spouse visa), as is my brother (came on a work visa) and my parents are currently in the process of applying (family reunification visa). I've had to deal with this a fair bit you could say..
Thank you Peter. I knew there would be hoops to jump through, but I just didn't know what step to take first. (And the leaky boat isn't an option for me ) I just received my passport and I'm wanting to fly to Australia in May, so from what your saying I need to get the tourist visa for then. Now my next question is, assuming I still want to live there, If I get a Work and Holiday visa, can I apply for a permanent visa while over there? Or would I have to come back to the States and start the process all over again?
I really appreciate your time and patience. Obviously this will be the first time I have ever left this country, and it's good to have help from someone who has been through it all. My mom's was easy because she had hired someone that did all the paperwork for her. She just signed what needed signed and paid them what they asked, so she hasn't been much help in that area.
If I get a Work and Holiday visa, can I apply for a permanent visa while over there? Or would I have to come back to the States and start the process all over again?
I'm not really sure - it probably depends on which visa category you are applying in. All of us have applied from inside Australia though. It was never the preferred option according to the paperwork, but it was allowed.
These rules do change from time to time though. The best is to decide which specific visa you think you have the best chances in and then read through that paperwork carefully. The fairly large Skilled Migrant category is probably where you will end up. There are various sub-categories listed on that page that you need to have a look through to decide which will fit you best. If none are a perfect fit, then you have to consider what you will do to make it a perfect fit!
Ok, again thank you Peter for all your help. At least now I have a starting point and a general idea of how to go from there. You've been very helpful.