This morning we woke up to an email from DIAC, our 176 visa has been granted!!! Finally the months of checking online everyday for status changes in our application have come to the happiest of endings.
I have a few things that I'd like to mention about the whole process which someone someday may find useful:
Using a migration agent
We didn't use one as we wanted to save money and to be honest had we used one I can only imagine that it would have slowed the whole process down.
Not getting a case officer
We used the online visa tracking site and it was this site that told us about when to have our medicals. The site updated saying all our tests had been received but the two forms (the medical and chest x-ray) were still showing as required. We assumed this was becasue marking it as received would trigger the next request for police checks. Believing this we went ahead and had our police checks done and scanned and emailed them to DIAC, I believe this is called front loading??? Anyway the site didn't show that the police checks were received and still no sign of a case officer! When we received the notification that our application had been successful only then did we know the name of our case officer which as far as we can tell must have been assigned on the day the visa was granted and becasue we'd already uploaded everything and had nothing to do but grant the visa! Yey.
Trying to contact DIAC
Forget it. We tried to contact them via the tracking site twice. We received our first reply two months after we sent it and are still waiting for the second reply to an email we sent in April. I guess if we'd used an agent they could have probably answered our questions but this is the chance you take going it alone.
Poms in Adelaide
This site and everyone on it are great! We couldn't have done it without you. It's an invaluable source info and support. Keep up the good work everyone!
We hope to be over there in early November just in time for a real summer with sunshine and everything.
Thanks to all!
Woody & Jane
Skills assessment in Nursing sent - 09/01/09
Positive skills assessment received from ANMC - 24/03/09
E logged 175 visa application - 08/04/09
Applied to NBSA for registration - 14/04/09
Medicals done and sent - 08/05/09
Registration with NBSA confirmed - 28/05/09
Police checks received - 15/06/09
Applied for SA State Sponsorship - 30/06/09
State sponsorship received - 10/07/09
House sold - 11/07/09
State sponsorship granted - 24/07/09
Visa changed to 176 - 27/07/09
Visa granted - 31/07/09