My name is Paul Harrison. I’m South African originally, before I moved to the United Kingdom (UK) where I lived for 18 years. A couple of years ago I chose to come to Australia to reconnect with a Junior School sweetheart. Unfortunately, that relationship didn’t work out as expected, which put my partner visa at risk of cancellation.
A conversation with my current employer ensued that led to a proposal from my employer to sponsor me on a 2-year work visa. Decision time! I now needed to weigh up moving back to the UK or potentially settling in Australia, which was no easy decision. Following a period of consideration, I decided that I could envision myself adding a lot of value to this country and decided that I was keen to stay and hopefully apply for permanent residency.
With the decision me, my next step was to engage a migration agent to help me apply for a work visa. The first agent I engaged was not able to provide many options or solutions for a temporary work visa that would lead to permanent residency. I was 43 years old at the time and was aware that 45 years was the cut off age for a lot of permanent residency options, particularly via the 482 visa.
And then a funny thing happened. I was in an Uber and the Uber driver was talking to me about immigration status; like Uber drivers have that uncanny sense to know about something that’s on your mind. Anyway, I told the driver that I didn’t know what I was going to do. I didn’t know if I was going to head back to the UK or what. And then he said to me, “listen, you’ve got to get hold of Roam Migration Law. They are amazing! Go and look at their Google reviews. They really are absolutely fantastic. Later on, I thought OK, the way he spoke with such conviction and seemed to really know what he was talking about, he really was very powerful, so I actually looked at the website and I booked an hour consultation.
In the initial consultation, it was explained to me that there may be two or three options. I could look at, one potentially, was a 482 visa (Temporary Skill Shortage visa, Subclass 482), but there were some limitations with that. The 482 visa option was a temporary short-term visa, plus the business I was working for would have to pay some significant money. Another potential option was the Global Talent Independent visa (GTI), a visa that I would have to pay for myself as it’s not a business sponsored visa.
Interestingly, Roam Migration Law pointed out to me, that my background prior to my current work, was quite diverse. They noted and explained that I’d trained extensively in the financial markets, which is something that Australia was particularly interested in at the time. They also identified that I had developed online businesses in Information Technology (IT), an industry that the Australian government was focused on attracting talented people to. Thirdly, they pointed out that my skills in the adult education and corporate training sector would be looked on positively as well.
This is really where I’ve got to say a massive thank you to Roam Migration Law. You know, you folks were extremely proactive in not just giving me great guidance but coming back to me when there was additional information that had come to light.
After considering their advice, I said, ‘well listen, let’s go for it’. I decided to apply for a Global Talent Independent visa (GTI), fully aware that this was something that I would have to pay for myself and that there wasn’t a huge degree of certainty around the outcome.
We gathered all the information together for the application, which involved two parts, the expression of interest, which was superbly put together by Roam Migration Law, and if positive, the actual application. It involved quite a lot of back and forth, however, we wanted to get it absolutely perfect.
My 2-year partner visa was due to expire very soon, so we had move fast and we were in a middle of a pandemic that was disrupting visa processing times. I’ve got to give it to Roam Migration Law but also to the Department of Home Affairs, because they prioritised my application and were conscientious with regards to my visa deadline. We managed to get a positive response to the E expression of interest, and a bridging visa was granted with 2 days to run on my partner visa.
With a positive response to the expression of interest we now just needed to submit the actual application, which was a fraction of the work of the expression of interest, because obviously we had already gathered all the information.
The application appeared to be progressing well, but then of course we got hit with another Covid-19 enforced lockdown. Despite this, the Department cross-checked all the facts and work endorsements, which was followed by a medical.
On the 9th of December I received a phone call from Roam Migration Law to let me know the GTI visa had been granted and congratulations on your permanent residency. Naturally I was thrilled.
How did Roam Migration Law help?
Sitting here now reflecting on the process, there are a few feelings that spring to mind about how Roam Migration Law helped me achieve such a fantastic result.
Firstly, they were extremely proactive. Their approach was different to all my other dealings with lawyers, accountants and other professional services in general. I think a lot of the time, even with the best of intentions in the world, there’s a lot of professional services who will be responsive to what you’re asking them for. In other words, if I’ve got a question, they’ve got an answer for me, and I can expect that answer to be accurate. However, when you have professional services providers who understand the outcome that you want to achieve and are keeping you front of mind for when there is a change and when they see an opportunity that would serve that client better, well, that’s a whole different level of service.
I didn’t even know if I was a client at the time. I think I was a prospect at the time. To receive a phone call to say ‘listen, some news has come to light, so let’s have a conversation that might help you with your situation’. Well, I’ve got to say, that was that was phenomenal.
Responses to my emails were always timely. Every single time I dealt with any representative of Roam Migration Law, they were very agreeable with regards to how we interacted, the inside the understanding to my circumstances, the professional knowledge of what was going on in that niche area of immigration law.
Finding peace of mind is an old saying that businesses like to use. I think peace of mind is a very rare commodity these days and I think Roam Migration Law provided that in spades. When we’re talking about potentially the rest of your life and life changing decisions, life changing situations, I know I’ve had the good fortune to work with Roam Migration Law.
Thank you to James and everybody at Roam Migration Law.