Apply for or renew your health insurance by clicking on the above image.
You’ve read that for your visa you have access to medicare – but what exactly does that mean for you? The ombudsman explains:
Medicare is the basis of Australia’s health care system and covers many health care costs. You can choose whether to have Medicare cover only, or a combination of Medicare and private health insurance. Citizens and most permanent Australian residents are eligible for Medicare. The Medicare system has three parts: hospital, medical and pharmaceutical.
Hospital Under Medicare you can be treated as a public patient in a public hospital, at no charge, by a doctor appointed by the hospital. You can choose to be treated as a public patient, even if you are privately insured. As a public patient, you cannot choose your own doctor and you may not have a choice about when you are admitted to hospital.
Medicare does not cover:
Many choose to also opt in for private health insurance, because you can see Medicare will not cover everything. There is further information about what medicare does not cover lower in this page. I found private health insurance is frequently taken out by partner visa holders as many are at a time in their lives when their is the intent to start a family. Families and health insurance seem to go hand-in-hand.
Which private health insurance provider?
Each and every time I cannot go past BUPA medical. They are Immigration’s only chosen medical visa services provider. I am registered with BUPA so that my clients receive clear cut information about immigration needs specifically. In order to reach this particular service click on the image below only.
You will find everything you need to know by reaching Bupa via clicking on the above image. If you wish to obtain more information such as premiums now click on the relevant image link below.
Further detail about Medicare reimbursements and cover
When you visit a doctor outside a hospital, Medicare will reimburse 100% of the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) fee for a general practitioner and 85% of the MBS fee for a specialist. If your doctor bills Medicare directly (bulk billing), you will not have to pay anything.
Medicare provides benefits for:
Medicare does not cover:
Under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) you pay only part of the cost of most prescription medicines purchased at pharmacies. The rest of the cost is covered by the PBS. You must present your Medicare card to obtain this benefit.
The amount you pay varies with the medicine, up to a standard maximum. People with concession cards have a lower maximum payment.
Money for Jam are the finance experts – they will speak to you about this aspect of the visa application.
If you are concerned about eligibility for the visa book a strategy session with me as soon as you can.
If you haven’t already taken up our offer you are still eligible for a FREE 30 minute strategy session where we get clear on your goals and what is best for you in the immigration process. If you don’t intend to take up this offer forward it onto a friend who could use the help.
Click on the blue box above to make a booking!
Recently my 6 year old’s behaviour has been grating on me, and simultaneously entertaining me. Her name is Suraya. Examples of some of Suraya’s cheekiness are, “Give me that phone, missy!”, “Darrrling, I’m not going to bed Jennifer darrrling.” Many times she has made me laugh as I inwardly admire her humour and confidence. I imagine her growing up to be a confident woman and of course that pleases me. But usually I have admonished Suraya because it is just not right for a 6 year old to talk to an adult, let alone her mother like that. For starters she should call me ‘Mum’ or ‘Mummy’. This reminds me of my work, and how essential it is I talk to case officers ‘delegates of the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection’ in the right and proper way.
Absolutely there have been times when I’ve exclaimed to myself “How dare that decision be made without regard to this evidence!!”, “Clearly this case officer has no understanding of the policy!!” But, acting with regard to the best interests of my clients, and with regard to the skills and expertise of the vast majority of case officers, I must only speak to the case officer respectfully. This might sound obvious but it is surprising how many people expect case officers to grant visas and ‘do their job’ for their own benefit. Some would say that’s very right, however I say it is better to be very respectful and polite.
If you are not being represented, please be mindful of this advice as you speak with case officers from immigration. I will paste an extract from one of my submission letters so that you get the idea. In it I am respectfully asking a case officer to consider a decision made at the Migration Review Tribunal which could mean a complex partner visa application might be granted.
We humbly request that much weight be placed on the Tribunal’s reasoning in the decision making process and see that there are a significant number of financial documents to show …
I am being polite just to ask them if they would even consider using some information in their decision making process. I’m not going to tell them that they must consider it. Even though I am aware of this area of law (below), I am not going to arrogantly point it out to the case officer
MIGRATION ACT 1958 – SECT 54
Minister(Minister can be a delegate of the Minister ie; your case officer)must have regard to all information in application
(1) The Minister must, in deciding whether to grant or refuse to grant a visa, have regard to all of the information in the application.
The following is very important.
MIGRATION ACT 1958 – SECT 55
Further information may be given
(1) Until the Minister has made a decision whether to grant or refuse to grant a visa, the applicant may give the Minister any additional relevant information and the Minister must have regard to that information in making the decision.
(2) Subsection (1) does not mean that the Minister is required to delay making a decision because the applicant might give, or has told the Minister that the applicant intends to give, further information.
In short this means once you have submitted your application the case officer is not obliged to ask for any further information to show that your relationship 1) meets the visa requirements and 2) is not fake. If you inadvertently haven’t submitted enough information they have every right to refuse the visa application (potentially a nearly $7k loss for partner visa applicants) without affording you any further chance to provide documents. I go into much more detail in a guide I have provided free of charge (http://www.jenniferkhan.com/giveaway) It is one of many areas of law that shows the position case officers hold, and subsequently that they are to be spoken with respectfully if you want things to go your way. Which leads me to the arrogance and dangerous assumptions of some visa applicants.
I do cringe when I hear people assume their visa will be granted easily. This leads to people speaking the wrong way to immigration officers and to their hard working representatives after which you definitely wont be receiving any favours! There is no easy case. Even if an applicant has 100 pieces of evidence to show immigration that their visa application (any kind) is real it doesn’t necessarily mean your case officer will think its real. Look at this Tribunal decision, (Administrative Appeals Tribunal Case 1511362, 24 February, 2017), absolutely devastating to the couple involved.
Tribunal cannot be satisfied that the sponsor is not simply imitating a role in the household simply to assist the application…
…Tribunal has had regard to the English Oxford Dictionary (on-line) definitions of “sham” and “false”. In relation to persons, “sham” is defined as “a person who pretends to be someone or something they are not”… “false” is defined as “made to imitate something in order to deceive” or “not according with truth or fact”
The Tribunal considers that the relationship presented to the Tribunal is a sham and a false one because the Tribunal has formed the view that the applicant is, at least on her part, pretending and imitating a relationship in order to acquire a visa that she would otherwise not be eligible for.
The Tribunal believed that all the documents submitted with the Partner Visa applciation were either fake or used to deceive. Yes – it is difficult to establish otherwise. This is further reason to speak respectfully and politely to an immigration officer.
If a case officer does not believe that your relationship is real they have no obligation to provide you a chance to show it:
Minister for Immigration & Multicultural Affairs; ex parte Durairajasingham  168 ALR 407 at : If the primary decision maker has stated that he or she does not believe a particular witness, no detailed reasons need to be given as to why that particular witness was not believed.
Having been involved with immigration processes for years I sometimes forget that many grossly underestimate the complexity of the visa process. Yes, some people do obtain visas easily (what they perceive to be an easy process) and many times I have seen people devastated at a refusal decision where they, their family and friends had no doubt that they would receive a visa grant.
I found it heartbreaking when genuine couples show me a visa refusal decision. When you start any visa application process it helps to understand and remember the position of the case officer assessing your visa application. If you are unrepresented and need to communicate with your case officer please keep this advice in mind.
More info about refusals:
A little bit more about case officers:
But definitely download the giveaway I mentioned:
“My partner is on a tourist visa and going back to the UK next month. So we are just going to apply while Meg is in the UK. She has all her documents and photos there so its going to be much easier that way for us. Meg needs to go to a wedding there plus she wants to spend more time with her family before settling here”
I gasp, thinking of all the ways I can possibly think to convince him not to do that, without sounding like I’m rail roading him into changing an important decision, going against what they believe is best for them.
This is because if Meg applies in the UK she is most likely going to have to stay outside Australia throughout the entire processing of the visa application. Now this can be a year or more (although I proudly claim for some of my clients I have had partner visa grants within 4 weeks). This means that there will be perhaps an entire year or more that Meg cannot enter Australia! No, Meg can’t even come over on a tourist visa unless there is strong and convincing evidence that Meg would leave before a tourist visa expired. The reason is due to immigration’s policy.
Policy holds that a case officer, the person who assesses any visa application, must refuse a tourist visa if they doubt an applicant intends to come to Australia for just a visit. They will most likely not believe that an applicant is just going to visit Australia if they are in a relationship with an Australian citizen or permanent resident. They will very likely write back, acting on the policy:
Decision-makers are are guided to consider…whether there any other more suitable visa options for the visa
Subsequently Meg is most likely to be advised to apply for a partner visa, if it has not been lodged yet. If it has been lodged Meg will most likely be told that they do not believe Meg’s intentions are to visit Australia only and then refuse the visa. Usually this is devastating for couples. A visit visa might be granted if strong and convincing reasons can be established showing Meg would return to the UK before the visit visa expired. However, so many people in this situation return back to their home country to no job, and no intention to apply for a job because they plan to settle in Australia. Not being able to show significant employment to a case officer very much goes against a positive tourist visa application assessment.
Meg and her Sponsor could try what they want to do which is wait for Meg to go back to the UK, lodge a partner visa application while over there, and then apply for a visit visa to come back to Australia. But the chances of a visit visa refusal is high could easily lead to much disappointment and heartache.
I have seen countless numbers of visit visas refused where couples have opted to apply outside Australia (sometimes this is their only option of course). It is usually heartbreaking and distressing for all family and friends involved. I hate to see couples separated due to immigration law and policy even for brief periods of time – so will always urge the following strategy, if possible, and of course based on eligibility for the partner visa.
STEP 1 Strive to collect all the minimum ‘time of application’ requirements to be able to lodge a Partner Visa before Meg leaves Australia. If there are any mandatory documents that Meg does not have in Australia she should ask family or friends to obtain them, scan and email them to Meg. (There are different requirements for ‘time of application’ and ‘time of decision’ on whether or not to grant the visa).
STEP 2 Use the Bridging Visa A details obtained when the partner visa is lodged to apply for a Bridging Visa B. The Bridging Visa A is granted to allow Meg to stay in Australia, after her cuurent visa expires, while a decision is being made on the partner visa application. This visa will allow Meg to leave Australia but not re-enter. The bridging visa which allows Meg to leave and re-enter is the Bridging Visa B. This usually needs 2 weeks to process so you can see how quickly Meg and her Sponsor should take action if she wishes to go back to the UK a month later. I will most likely be able to help clients achieve a bridging visa more quickly if necessary. You cannot apply for a Bridging Visa B without the Bridging Visa A.
STEP 3 Meg goes back home to the UK continuing to gather significant documents to add to the partner via application. All the’ time of application requirements’ would be submitted so it’s about sending documents to meet the’ time of decision’ requirements. They should be sent to immigration as soon as possible. Requests for extensions of time to provide documents can be made also. Meg has a great time and after a month she returns back to Australia easily. In Meg’s case she will have full work rights and can commence employment while waiting for an outcome on the partner visa application.
So in this case, it is far better to lodge sooner, rather than later, and before leaving Australia.
BRIDGING VISAS ARE FREQUENTLY MISUNDERSTOOD
I’m giving you the right advice so you truly know your travel options and rights if you happen to be, or are soon to be, holding a Bridging Visa A.
I have encountered countless examples of people who believe they cannot apply for a Bridging Visa B if their Bridging Visa A is ‘not yet in effect’. If you have a Bridging Visa A you can leave Australia but cannot return. So you need to apply for a Bridging Visa B if you want to leave and return. You cannot apply for a Bridging Visa B (BVB) if you do not have a Bridging Visa A. What if you have a Bridging Visa A (BVA) but it is not yet in effect? Many think they cannot apply for a BVB.
I include an image below of a question in a popular online forum. So this person, I will call him Mr X, has heard that he cannot get a BVB until his student visa expires. What has happened here is Mr X would have received a BVA grant letter stating the BVA will not ‘come into effect’ until the student visa expires. He would have received a BVA when he applied for the Subclass 485 visa. Someone has told Mr X that he has to wait until the BVA comes into effect (at the time the student visa expires) to be able to apply for a Bridging Visa.
But it is not true! Mr X could have applied for the BVB and travelled back home when he wanted! I will explain:
A person can be a holder of a Bridging Visa A even if it is not in effect.
A person is granted a BVA on the basis of a substantive visa application. Yes it is true that it does not come into effect until the expiry of the previous visa however that person is a holder of the Bridging Visa A. A holder of a BVA can apply for a BVB.
From Immigration’s own Procedures Advice Manual (what the case officers should be following and understanding)
To really emphasise this point and to show how common this misunderstanding is look at the inaccurate professional advice (image) below: “if you are on a Bridging Visa A …it is in effect…you can apply for a Bridging Visa B”. No- there is no need to include as a condition that the BVA is is in effect.
This is what the law says:
“020.211 The applicant is the holder of:
There are all kinds of risks in relationships and love – asking a person on a first date, telling a person you love them for the first time, relocating to be with your girlfriend. We all know sometimes romantic relationships last a life time and sometimes they don’t. The process of going through a partner visa application can place a great deal of negative pressure on keeping a relationship going. More times than not I see people who won’t let an immigration process get in their way. But I’ll often hear a common fear, ‘What if the visa is refused?
What recently struck me when I considered visa applicants over the last several years is that since the immigration fees have increased to nearly $7000 another fear is admitted, ‘What if the visa is granted, but then our relationship doesn’t even last? There goes the visa fee, relocation fees, a job…’
Years ago I would never experience a client admit this fear to me. If the fear is ever revealed I think it usually would be to a close family member or friend. Since the partner visa fee increase I do sometimes hear a client admit a strong fear of financial loss. The total cost of relocating countries to live with a loved one can be huge when considering airfares, wrapping up work commitments, insurances, immigration assistance fees, medical costs and so on. What if things don’t work out? What if the partner migrating to Australia doesn’t like it here, or misses their family too much? This is huge emotional and financial pressure.
There are many couples who have a ‘whatever it takes’ commitment to make sure they can be together. I have to agree that I would take the same approach moving forward in a way where the ultimate decision is not about money. Beliefs and attitudes around money, abundance mindsets or lack is not something I am confident to give advice about. I do know that, simply put, if we work we can gain money in addition to borrowing from friends, family or banks. Generally speaking I think we eventually find the funds to do what we need to do. For that reason money pressure can be taken out of the decision whether or not to apply for the partner visa.
Several months ago I sat down face to face with a client for a lunch hour. There were legitimate concerns as to why he thought their relationship wouldn’t last long term. I loved his approach, because although he was clearly worried at the thought of losing a lot of money if the relationship didn’t work out he said, “I love her. Even if after she gets here she falls out of love or doesn’t like it here she deserves this chance. I love her and she’s a good person, I’m happy to put the money into it.”
I wish it were easier and cheaper for those embarking on the partner visa process, especially when there are no guarantees. The faster you commit to a process the faster your partner could be in Australia including earning Australian money. After that, more experiences and challenges to come! Read on for tips to help you through (click on images below).
The Partner Visa Application Package