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Old Apr 15th 2016, 5:07 am   #16
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

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Originally Posted by TeeTMI View Post
If your husband has been diagnosed dyslexic you may be able to get some concessions - have a chat with the testing organisation.


You will probably find the thread goes back to plumbing at some point as the thread title is specific to that.
Indeed! Its not unusual for threads to wander!
We do have lots of enquiries about plumbing so I know that part of the post will be useful
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Old Aug 22nd 2016, 10:46 am   #17
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

hi lisa

this thread is ideal for my situation at the moment, but won't let me message you privately could you message me or add me on something so i can message you.

cheers
micky
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Old Aug 22nd 2016, 11:01 am   #18
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

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hi lisa

this thread is ideal for my situation at the moment, but won't let me message you privately could you message me or add me on something so i can message you.

cheers
micky
You need to contribute three posts at least to this site before you can use the private message system.
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Old Sep 6th 2016, 10:50 pm   #19
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

Hello there!
Thank you so much for your post it has been very helpful for me. I was wondering if you might be able to help me with my queries. My partner is a plumber in the UK but he only has Level 2 city and guilds with 5 and 1/2 years experience (2 years was his apprenticeship). Because of this I'm worried that he may not be able to provide all the mandatory skills from the Tradeset report. Did you have to provide evidence for literally every mandatory skill and gas elective skill? And as long as it is on one of references, would that be sufficient? Because of this I worry about not being able to be provided with an OTSR before we leave on working holiday visas. If his assessment is unsuccessful, can he complete training in Australia to bring his quals up to level III?
And do you think it's probably better to do training in aus anyway before submitting an assessment to Vetassess? To ensure that his application is successful.
I feel like I'm going round in circles with this so any help you could offer is greatly appreciated. Kayleigh x
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Old Sep 7th 2016, 2:56 am   #20
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

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hi lisa

this thread is ideal for my situation at the moment, but won't let me message you privately could you message me or add me on something so i can message you.

cheers
micky
I did PM you a few weeks ago if you still need help? Thanks
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Old Sep 7th 2016, 11:07 am   #21
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

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Hello there!
Thank you so much for your post it has been very helpful for me. I was wondering if you might be able to help me with my queries. My partner is a plumber in the UK but he only has Level 2 city and guilds with 5 and 1/2 years experience (2 years was his apprenticeship). Because of this I'm worried that he may not be able to provide all the mandatory skills from the Tradeset report. Did you have to provide evidence for literally every mandatory skill and gas elective skill? And as long as it is on one of references, would that be sufficient? Because of this I worry about not being able to be provided with an OTSR before we leave on working holiday visas. If his assessment is unsuccessful, can he complete training in Australia to bring his quals up to level III?
And do you think it's probably better to do training in aus anyway before submitting an assessment to Vetassess? To ensure that his application is successful.
I feel like I'm going round in circles with this so any help you could offer is greatly appreciated. Kayleigh x

Hi Kayleigh,

Thanks for getting in touch, glad I can help!

Firstly, the good news is that VETASSESS accepts a minimum of 5 years work experience and takes into consideration time spent in training, so there should be no problem with them accepting his length of work experience. In regards to the qualification, I believe the Level 2 NVQ aligns with the Australian qualification (Certificate III). Did your partner complete only the Level 2 (just the certificate) or the NVQ2 as well? If he completed an apprenticeship then he should have the certificates for the NVQ2. Level 3 is irrelevant and is only really a bonus. I must stress however, that when counting points for skilled employment or stating your skilled employment start dates, it should be post qualification, that is after the issue of the NVQ2. So for the purpose of the skills assessment he can claim 5 1/2 years experience, but for the purpose of immigration and the visa, he can only claim from 3 years onwards. For the tradeset report, you should only really tick what you can back up with evidence. Obviously you need to ensure that all of the mandatory ones are ticked, then it would be a case of compiling some evidence in the mean time. This could simply be (and this is what we did), was copy and paste all of the units of competency from the Australian Plumbing qualification into your resume under your UK work experience, and that way this is classed as "evidence" you meet those units. You could also list all of the units in your employers statement that he can sign off on. You probably won't be asked provide a piece of evidence for every single skill, but you're best to have all of them listed in your resume and employer reference anyway. Any gaps you have, use this time to get photos at work - it must show his face and he must be wearing all PPE. Even if he puts his PPE on and you take a picture of him at home adjusting your bathroom tap, installing the shower, fiddling with the boiler buttons or fixing the toilet then this can be used. You should also cross check the qualification certificates with the units of competency to make the link for the assessing officer (to make their life easier and therefore your assessment processed quicker). For example, your partners plumbing certificates should list units/modules covered, you should align these with the units of competency for the Australian qualification as there will be similar wording e.g. "effective communication in the workplace" is listed on the UK certificate and "communicating effectively in the construction industry" is listed on the Aus unit list, so this is a tick. We did not provide much evidence for the gas option, only really listed in resume and employer reference, and he was deemed competent. Just make it easy for the assessing officer - your portfolio should flow and be easy to read, have a contents page listing all of your units of competency you are claiming for and the evidence to which it relates with the page number. I can send you my table as a template if you like, PM me.

It is important to note that all plumbers doing a VETASSESS skills assessment need a first aid certificate, the three day course. You need this before you send off your evidence as it forms part of the portfolio.

I would recommend doing the skills assessment before you leave the UK for many reasons, but it depends on a number of factors - 1) how long until you leave? You will need a good 3-6 months to do skills assessment and first aid, noting that you will need to travel to either Lancashire or London for the practical assessment. 2) at what point in time do you intend to apply for permanent residency? The skills assessment expires after three years.

There is a training organisation called Qualify Me in Sydney (maybe other states too) that can get your Australian qualification within a few months. However, this costs around $5000 and they do prefer some Australian plumbing experience, even if it is just a few months. Here is the pitfall - you cannot gain Australian plumbing experience without a licence and you cannot get a licence without a positive skills assessment (OTSR). There is the possibility Qualify Me can get your Australian Certificate III without Australian experience (requiring more work and possibly more money) but there's no guarantee and then you have arrived in Australia with no skills assessment, and its more difficult to arrange here, especially when you won't know your way around. If you have the time now, just get it under your belt. However if you do manage to get the Aussi qualification before you do the skills assessment, you can go down "pathway 2" for VETASSESS which I believe is less work and time, but again there's no guarantee this will work out. If you are planning on doing you regional work to get your second year, this will give you more time to play around and will take the pressure off this whole process.

All in all, providing that your partner can update his resume to reflect the Australian units of competency he has ticked in tradeset, get his employer to support these units in a statement, get photos as much as possible and you can verify is he has completed the NVQ Level 2, then I don't see why the skills assessment would be unsuccessful.

I hope I have helped, let me know if you have any more questions
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Old Sep 7th 2016, 11:11 am   #22
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

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I did PM you a few weeks ago if you still need help? Thanks
Mickyseers won't be able to see your PM, as he's not made enough posts on the forum to access the PM facility. If he comes back to the forum and posts more, then he'll be able to.

HTH.
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Old Sep 7th 2016, 11:24 am   #23
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

Okay thanks, well if he sees this he can always repost questions in the forum instead of PM.
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Old Jan 7th 2017, 7:24 pm   #24
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

this is an amazing post, this is what I'm looking to start doing and the fact i can do the practical test here is great.
do you have any advice on starting out how much money to put aside etc.
I'm hearing that starting this process is a money pit?
also as well as the vetassess did you also pay to get his qualifications recognised from TRA?

Last edited by george82; Jan 7th 2017 at 7:27 pm. Reason: missed question
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Old Jan 7th 2017, 10:03 pm   #25
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

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Originally Posted by george82 View Post
this is an amazing post, this is what I'm looking to start doing and the fact i can do the practical test here is great.
do you have any advice on starting out how much money to put aside etc.
I'm hearing that starting this process is a money pit?
also as well as the vetassess did you also pay to get his qualifications recognised from TRA?
Vetassess do the assessments for TRA. With a licensed trade you are issued an OTSR to enable you to get licensed. Not sure what gap training, if any, a plumber needs to do. Overall skills assessment including practical is over $2000. You would need to check where you can do the practical in the UK. Some people need to travel the day before and stay overnight to be able to attend so you would need to factor that in. You may also need to get documents certified, postage, etc which will add a bit more.

After that, the visa process is not cheap. Visa, medicals, police checks, shipping, flights, etc - and money until you can secure work - probably looking at £25k
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Old Jan 7th 2017, 10:51 pm   #26
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

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Originally Posted by george82 View Post
this is an amazing post, this is what I'm looking to start doing and the fact i can do the practical test here is great.
do you have any advice on starting out how much money to put aside etc.
I'm hearing that starting this process is a money pit?
also as well as the vetassess did you also pay to get his qualifications recognised from TRA?
Hi George

Thank you for reading my post.

Not including flights and accommodation because these prices always fluctuate, you should expect to spend around £10,000 on the visa process (including skills assessment, medicals, police certificates and visa application).

The gap training for a Plumber is quite complicated, and it will need to be done otherwise you cannot get a licence and therefore cannot work as a Plumber in Australia. We are finalising that side of the process in NSW at the moment. It is looking to cost us around £2500 for the course through an RTO, but if we want to go through TAFE (which is apparently recommended but takes about 6-9 months longer) then you would need £6000.

If you want to talk about this in more detail, feel free to send me a private message and we can exchange emails if that is easier.

Have you started any part of the process yet? What visa are you looking at applying for?
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Old Jan 8th 2017, 12:16 pm   #27
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

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Hi George


If you want to talk about this in more detail, feel free to send me a private message and we can exchange emails if that is easier.

Have you started any part of the process yet? What visa are you looking at applying for?
Not something we recommend. The whole point of the forums is to share information publicly which ensures that any incorrect info can be corrected and so everyone gets all the information, not just one person. Threads are here for future users as well as current users. Thanks.
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Old Jan 8th 2017, 12:39 pm   #28
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

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Not something we recommend. The whole point of the forums is to share information publicly which ensures that any incorrect info can be corrected and so everyone gets all the information, not just one person. Threads are here for future users as well as current users. Thanks.
Not to mention that the giving of immigration advice here in Australia is regulated.
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Old Jan 19th 2017, 5:55 pm   #29
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Default Re: Are you a Plumber wanting to move to Australia? Read me for advice!

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Hello all,

I figured it was time I made a post about a Plumbers journey from the UK to Australia, after struggling for three years to find the correct information when it comes down to licences, gap training, skills assessment and visa points etc. Hopefully this can help other tradies too, but I am speaking mostly from a Plumbers point of view.

What is our background?

My partner is 26 years old and has worked as a Plumber in the UK for almost ten years, having also spent three years as a Supervisor too. He has City and Guilds qualifications including Level 2, NVQ Level 2, Level 3 and NVQ Level 3 certificates. I am just the wife, also known as head researcher We moved to Sydney in August 2015 on a temporary working visa so we could sample the life before committing to PR.

Process Overview

As a starting point, you will need to do the following if you are looking at getting a PR visa as a tradesman:

1. Check your occupation is on the Skilled Occupation List. From memory, the main trades on the list are Plumbers, Electricians, Mechanics, Welders, Fitters, Bricklayers, Carpenters and Joiners. See https://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Work/...ions-lists/SOL for the full list.

2. Got an occupation on the list? Now see your visa options. The most preferable skilled migration visa is the Skilled Independent Subclass 189, as you do not need sponsorship from an employer or state, you can live and work anywhere in Australia and have all the entitlements of a resident. However, you will need 60 points straight off the back, which I will go into more detail further down. If you don't reach 60, you can look at sponsorship visas that will give you extra points e.g. state sponsorship is 5 points and regional sponsorship is 10 points. You can also opt for the English test which can give 10-20 points depending on your score. I will also go into more detail about the English test further down (a very sore subject which I think most will agree?!)

3. Once you have found your desired visa and know what points you have/need, the process beings... first stop is a skills assessment. More information is further down.

4. Rack up your points to reach 60 before submitting your Expression of Interest.

5. Submit your EOI, get an invitation, lodge your application along with medicals and police clearances and hopefully receive your grant. Then the fun REALLY begins! If you want more info about the general visa process, see other posts on this forum, I am just giving an overview.

6. Once you are in Australia, as a tradesman you will need a licence to legally work in your trade. As a Plumber in New South Wales, the minimum requirement is a Tradesperson Certificate, but you would have to work under some supervision. If you want to run your own jobs, be self employed or work as a supervisor, you will need an Individual Contractor Licence and/or Qualified Supervisor Certificate. For these, you need the Aussi qualifications - this is where gap training comes into it. If you come on a temporary visa and therefore haven't needed to do your skills assessment yet, it is a good idea to do this beforehand anyway as it will help with getting your licence and Australian qualifications. See more info below.


The Points System

As of April 2016, points are awarded as follows:

Age

18–24 years = 25 points

25–32 years =30 points

33–39 years =25 points

40–44 years = 15 points

45–49 years = 0 points

English language ability

Test results must be no older than three years immediately before the day on which the visa application was made.

Competent English = 0 points

Proficient English (band 7 on IELTS, 65 on PTE) =10 points

Superior English (band 8 on IELTS, 79 on PTE) = 20 points

Skilled employment

Only 20 points can be awarded for any combination of skilled employment in and outside Australia

Outside Australia: skilled employment in your nominated skilled occupation or a closely related skilled occupation


In skilled employment for at least three but less than five years (of the past 10 years) = 5 points

In skilled employment for at least five but less than eight years (of the past 10 years) = 10 points

In skilled employment for at least eight and up to 10 years (of the past 10 years) = 15 points

In Australia: skilled employment in your nominated skilled occupation or a closely related skilled occupation


In skilled employment for at least one but less than three years (of the past 10 years) = 5 points

In skilled employment for at least three but less than five years (of the past 10 years) = 10 points

In skilled employment for at least five but less than eight years (of the past 10 years) = 15 points

In skilled employment for at least eight and up to 10 years (of the past 10 years) = 20 points

Qualifications

Doctorate from an Australian educational institution or other doctorate of a recognised standard = 20 points

At least a bachelor degree from an Australian educational institution or other degree of a recognised standard = 15 points

Diploma or trade qualification completed in Australia = 10 points

An award or qualification recognised by the assessing authority in the assessment of the skilled occupation = 10 points

Australian study requirement

One or more degrees, diplomas or trade qualifications awarded by an Australian educational institution and meet the Australian study requirement = 5 points

Other factors

Credentialled community language qualifications = 5 points

Study in regional Australia or a low population growth metropolitan area (excluding distance education) = 5 points

Partner skill qualifications = 5 points

Professional year in Australia for at least 12 months in the four years before the day you were invited to apply = 5 points

Nomination/sponsorship (where required)

Nomination by state or territory government (visa subclass 190 only) = 5 points

Nomination by state or territory government or sponsorship by an eligible family member to reside and work in a specified/designated area (visa subclass 489 only) = 10 points


At present, my partner has 30 points for age, 10 points for qualification (NVQ recognised by VETASSESS in skills assessment) and 10 points for 5+ years skilled employment in the UK. First main advice is make sure you start counting employment from the date you were considered skilled, this is usually on qualification of your NVQ Level 2. We are applying for regional sponsorship for the remaining 10 points after choosing not to continue the IELTS/PTE English test.

The Skills Assessment

For a Plumber, you do your skills assessment through VETASSESS. See Trade Occupation Migration Skills Assessment - VETASSESS. The first step is the training and employment check. Gather all your qualifications, employer references, payslips, P60's, resume, work photographs.. basically every piece of evidence you can think of to prove you can work in your trade. Get copies of everything, have them certified and put together into a formal portfolio. Our training check was processed very quickly compared to reading other peoples experiences (see my timeline), and we put this down to having an "easy to read" and organised portfolio. Just make sure it is in a logical order, everything is certified and you link your evidence to the units of competency for the Australian qualification. Units of competency that they compare to can be found at https://training.gov.au/Training/Det...7-33613be2f2ed
Make a cover page for each evidence, for example introduce your qualifications and bullet point the units of competency for the Certificate III in Plumbing that your NVQ's match... e.g. "working safely in the construction industry" from the Aussi qualification matches the "maintain a safe working environment when undertaking plumbing duties" on your NVQ units certificate. Make it easy for them!
Send it off and then you should receive a successful training and employment check if they think your skills and experience are equal to the Australian standard. Now time for the practical assessment.
My partner did his at Blackburn College, but I think most of them are held in London. At the time we worked ourselves up a bit thinking it would be difficult, but if you are a good Plumber and you have the knowledge then you will sail through. It involved doing basic tasks whilst an assessor watches you - it sounds daunting but it was very laid back and the assessors were easy going and helpful. They do want you to pass, so they will help you if you need it. If you want more information about what was involved, PM me.
If you pass the practical then you will receive an Offshore Technical Skills Record. This lists all the units of competency you are deemed as competent in when comparing to the Certificate III in Plumbing. It should also state your recognised qualification under "training qualification" which would entitle you to the 10 points for qualification.

The English Test

If you have already done some research into this you will notice that it is not a favorable topic for migrants. As an English native speaker, do not for one second think that you will pass with flying colours. It is just a money making scheme that people will keep paying into because they need the points. My partner first did the IELTS, along with British medical doctors that were on their 5th and 6th attempts. We were told "off the record" that the scoring and marking of the English test is fixed, as a way of controlling immigration. If all the skilled workers passed the test first time and left the country to start a new life, how many skilled workers would be left in the UK? Fixing the scores controls the balance of skilled workers in and out of the country. But hey, let's not start a debate.. that's my personal experience and my opinion which is what this forum is for. We have decided to go for regional sponsorship for the remaining 10 points so we do not waste any more time or money on the test. Please note, I know some people have had positive experiences with the English test but as other tradies will agree, using pen and paper and writing essays on a daily basis is pretty much non-existent for a manual worker such as a Plumber.

Licence and Gap Training

This is really the main motive behind me writing this post, as this is probably the most frustrating and complicating part - hopefully it will help another Plumber now because I could have really done with seeing a post like this three years ago! So let's just assume you have done your skills assessment and got your visa and you have arrived in Australia. The first and easiest thing to do is get your white card. This is similar to the CSCS card from the UK that allows you to enter a construction site. We went through Blue Dog Training as it was an online course which saved having to do to a test centre. It's basically a couple of hours worth of answering health and safety questions, looking at pictures and identifying the hazards etc. It doesn't matter which state you choose for the white card because they are all nationally recognised. We chose WA and have never had a problem with entering sites.

The next step is to apply for your provisional tradesperson certificate from NSW Fair Trading. See Builder_and_tradespeople_forms. The provisional will allow you to work as a Plumber under supervision whilst you complete gap training to work towards your full licence. You will need your OTSR from your skills assessment to be granted a provisional. Once granted now you can apply for jobs and legally work as a Plumber.

The next step is to arrange gap training in order to receive the Certificate III in Plumbing. Now read carefully... NSW Fair Trading say to "see TAFE NSW" on their website. When you email Fair Trading, they say to go through TAFE. Now cut a long story short, we followed their advice when we first arrived and booked a meeting to see the Head of Plumbing in a TAFE campus. He reviewed his OTSR, qualifications, references (we basically provided the same portfolio as we did for the training and employment check, so make sure you keep a copy of this). He was really impressed so we thought great, we can have this done in no time. Turns out it would cost nearly $10,000 and could take between 6-12 months. Baring in mind the whole four year apprenticeship only costs $12,000. It would also mean having to take a day off work each week to attend TAFE as they do not run night/weekend classes. We were really frustrated. Then along came a work colleague.. he completed his Certificate III through Qualify Me, who use an RTO called Train n Trade. It cost him $4000 and took six weeks. You can also add on the Certificate IV which is the requirement for a Contractors licence and Supervisors Certificate for a total of $8000 for both qualifications (would be $10,000 if done separately). I wanted to verify that this would be accepted by Fair Trading, as you would be issued a nationally accredited qualification by a registered training organisation just like TAFE.
This is where the confusion started. Over email, Fair Trading consistently said gap training HAD TO BE DONE WITH TAFE. I advised Qualify Me of this who were not happy at all, and spoke to Fair Trading on the phone. They said their advisors should not be recommending any RTO's to clients. I also rang them up myself saying I had completed the qualifications with Train n Trade via Qualify Me and asked is this was suitable to receive the licence - they said no problem and it didn't matter it was not completed with TAFE as long as the RTO was registered and current.
I have figured that when you state you are just looking into gap training, they go on and on about TAFE, maybe they have some sort of agreement to recommend the institution. However when you say you have already completed the training with another RTO, they are happy to grant the licence.

So we are in the process of doing the training with Qualify Me and so far no problems. They just request all your evidence for recognition of prior learning, which is again the same training and employment check you did for the skills assessment plus any evidence of current employment in Australia such as photos. You may need to work as a Plumber for a few months to get some Australian work experience evidence so they can recognise you for as many units of competency as possible. Basically, similar to the skills assessment they match all your skills and experiences against the competencies for the Australian qualifications. They tick off as much as they can, then wherever there are gaps, for example my partner has not done drainage in the UK, then he would attend evening classes to complete the gaps. This is much more flexible than TAFE. You can take as long or as little as you want and do not have to attend every class, so long as you complete the remaining units by gathering evidence.
I will update you once we have completed all the RPL and been issued with the qualifications.

So to sum up the licensing process, get your OTSR, white card and provisional licence and apply to any RTO that offers gap training in the Certificate III and/or IV in Plumbing. Complete RPL and any remaining gaps, be issued with the qualification then apply back to Fair Trading for your full licence. Please note, if you do the Certificate IV to get your contractors licence, you will need two years Australian plumbing experience too. So our plan is to apply for full tradesperson certificate using Certificate III, working for another 12 months as a Plumber and then upgrading to a contractors licence.


If you are a Plumber or another tradie feel free to ask questions and I will try to help based on our experiences. Even if you are not a tradie and require advice for the general migration process I am also happy to answer questions. If you have been through the process and wish to share your experiences with others, you can also post here too.

Thanks for listening and hope I can help
Hi Lisa,

I've got to say, I've read through your post a few times (to take it all in), and I find it really helpful.

I'm in the very early stages of Applying for my visa and getting the right info is pretty daunting.
We're looking at going to Perth (where we have family), and after just coming back from a holiday there it seems pretty hard to get a job when you 1st arrive and have no Australian experience.

I work for my self in the UK but dont particularly want to do that in Aus straight away. Did your husband find it hard to find his 1st job or is there help anywhere? Or is it just a case of take the plunge and sort when you get there.

Any info appreciated.
Thanks, Ian
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Old Mar 2nd 2017, 8:11 am   #30
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Default Plumber assessment for Australia Pr sample test

Hey can anyone who already given assessment test for plumber category for Australia pr can guide me what sought of practical test will I be able to face like if anyone can help me with their experience guide me to prepare for the practical assessment. Hope you guys help me...
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