In the end, getting hold of all the police records, other official documents, and official translations from each country took around three months. Geekman was finally able to submit his permanent residence application in January, just in time for the new two-year employment contract to kick in (you require a two-year contract to qualify for permanent residence under the category he is applying in).
A couple of weeks ago, Immigration contacted him wanting to know why he had applied when he (now) has less than two years on his contract. He explained that he did have a two-year contract when he submitted the application and they seemed mollified.
And now he has just had an email from Immigration saying that they now need ME to jump through exactly the same hoops he did (police records from every country I have lived in, extensive medical examination costing hundreds of dollars, official translations, etc). This despite the fact that, as a New Zealander, I can live in Australia for as long as I like without going through any of this crap. And I am sure there was never anything on the original forms saying I would have to do this.
The worst thing is that even if we are extremely efficient, the long post times between Europe and here (and the "up to three months" processing time for some police record requests) mean it will probably take months to get the required documents. So by the time they come to process Geekman's application, he'll be lucky if he has much more than a year left on his contract. And I can just see them using that as an excuse to reject his application out of hand (while retaining the $2500 non-refundable processing fee).
We are so screwed.
Wednesday, March 14, 2007