Business Owner Visa Options

“Small business isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s for the brave, the patient, and the persistent. It’s for the overcomer.”

Business Owner Visa – Do I qualify?

If you have had an ownership interest in a business or businesses in Australia for the past 2 years’ worth more than $100,000, and those businesses have a turnover of more than $300,000 per year, and you employ the equivalent of 2 full-time Australian employees, and you have assets worth over $250,000 in Australia, then you may be eligible for an Australian Business Owner Visa.

The Business Owner Visa is a permanent residence visa which allows you to travel in and out of Australia for five years. If you have managed your business and investment activities in Australia, this visa will let you live, work and study in Australia, enroll in Medicare (Australia’s health care scheme) and apply for Australian citizenship (if eligible). You will also be able to sponsor your eligible relatives for permanent residence, however you and your family will not be eligible to claim social security payments, unless you have suffered a major change in living circumstances that is beyond your control.

Before you apply for this Australian business visa, you need to notify the business development agency in the state or territory where your business operates of your intention to make application for a business owner visa.

Even if your business is flourishing, you need to be aware that not every type of business can count towards a successful visa application. You will also need to hold at least 30% to 51% of the total issued capital in the business. Showing Bank statements as proof of business activity is not sufficient evidence of your assets and turnover. You will need to provide legal documents to prove your assets and business activity, such as audit reports prepared to international standards.

Q. What evidence do I need to provide?

To qualify for a Business Owner Visa or the State Sponsored Business Owner Visa you must show evidence that you participate directly in the operations of your business on a day to day basis, and that you have also participated in the decisions affecting the overall direction and performance of the business throughout the 24 months leading up to the date of your business visa application.

If you spend more than six weeks abroad within that 24 month period, you must show what business management activities you undertook while you were absent.

You must also provide an overview of your business career and intentions for the growth of your business, outlining your business activities, the size and length of your business ownership, details of your management role over the past 2 years, net assets of your business throughout the 12 months before application, your turnover, and any evidence of acquisitions, partnerships, trusts, or franchise agreements that relate directly to the nature of your business.

Other evidence that will support your application are business contracts, meeting minutes, pricing structure, Bank and Profit and Loss statements, strategic plans, evidence of your Australian Business number (ABN), your Business Activity Statements (BAS) for the past two years, and business taxation returns for the past two years.

You may also be required to show residency/citizenship status of people within your employ, such as a copy of their passport, birth certificate or citizenship certificate.

Additionally, you should be prepared to submit photographs of your business premises and business activities (maximum six photos).

Q.  Can VSA help?

Our Registered Migration specialists can advise you on whether you qualify for a Business Owner Visa or not, and on the types of evidence you will need to include to support your visa application. You can also find more details about this and other business visas on the Austrade website.

Q.  Proving Net Assets of you and/or your partner    (spouse or de facto)

Start by creating a one-page summary statement detailing all of your assets and liabilities for the beginning and the end of a 12-month period that ends no more than three months before the date of your application. Make certain that you financial statements and employee records also cover this exact same period.

To qualify your combined net assets must hold a value no less than AU$250,000 in assets, excluding liabilities, and must be held in Australia. You must also show evidence of liabilities such as mortgages, loans, credit cards etc. If you have any assets in trust, you must include a copy of the trust deeds with your visa application.

Also prepare copies of bank statements and term deposits, real estate assets, evidence of asset ownership (title deeds and registration certificates), valuation certificates from an accredited property valuer, mortgage statements, loan agreements and loan balance sheets, and stocks and bonds held in Australia as well.

Q.  Proving your identity

You must submit certified copies of the biographical pages of the current passport or travel documents of all people included in the application, and one passport sized photograph of each person too.

If you name has changed or the name of anyone included in your application you will need to submit a certified copy of evidence of the name change.

You will need to arrange an AFP national police check for every person in your family unit aged 17 years or over whether they be part of the visa application or not, who have been in Australia for at least 12 months within the past 10 years.

If you have any dependents 18 years of age or over, you will need to provide evidence of their current studies, a certified copy of adoption or birth certificate showing the names of both parents or adoptive parents, and a certified copy of the marriage certificate (if applicable).

If you want to bring with you a child younger than 18 years of age, and that child’s other parent is not included in the visa application, you will need to provide documentary evidence that you have the legal right to bring that child to Australia, such as certified court-issued parental custody papers or guardianship order, a Statutory Declaration from the other parent giving their permission for the migration, and attach a certified copy of the other parent’s government-issued identification document with their photograph and signature.

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