There have been lots of questions regarding tentative timelines for invitation/visa processing. I thought it'd be helpful to summarize all of these:
- The expected time frame for getting an invitation is very tough to predict. Generally if you have 65 points or more in subclass 189 or 190 (including state sponsorship points), you have a good chance of getting an invitation very early. With 60 points, it's rather difficult and inconsistent to comment. Some of the points to remember in this regard:
- Your skill occupation has a big role in the decision. The system of queuing is done per occupation basis. That means it is possible (and very common case) that some people of Occupation A get invitation with 60 points whereas people in Occupation B waits relatively longer even with 65 points. Unfortunately DIBP only publishes statistics of overall invitation (not per occupation basis), hence make it very difficult to forecast about any certain occupation.
- In subclass 190, your intended state also has a good say in this topic. In some states you have more chance of getting invited earlier than other, mainly because of variable invitation quota and demand. So it is recommended that you submit EOI for multiple states if you don't have a strong affinity for a certain state.
- You can submit as many EOI as you like, in as many subclasses as you want. Just don't accept multiple invitations.
- After getting invitation, your EOI will be locked. In that stage if you discover something that you've missed in your EOI or made some trivial mistakes, you should be okay to proceed as long as the mistakes don't alter your point structure.
- Once you get invited, your point will not have any impact in your Visa decision and processing time.
- The processing time varies a lot without any bound. Though the official timeline for subclass 189 decreased from 18 months to 3 months in recent times while maintaining 3 months for subclass 190, it really varies with your situation and DIBP is not liable to maintain that timeline. The main time consuming parts is your background security check and you country of origin plays the most important role in this regard. I personally have seen a delay of 2 months to 2 years before the PR is granted.
- Once you will be granted the PR, you'll be given a certain period to have your first entry. You have to enter Australia, even if for one hour, by that deadline. This deadline again varies a lot, most probably linked with the validation of your health clearance. Personally I have seen in the range of 6 days to 1 year.
- For subclass 190, you are expected to live and work in your sponsored state for the initial two years of your stay. There is no requirement that this 2 year period has to be continuous. You can leave Australia anytime if you want, and come back later. It requires you to stay 2 years (365*2 days) accumulated stay in your sponsored state before you move to other states. Also, this doesn't bar you from giving a short trip to other state. Furthermore, this rule is not followed very intensely, that is if you fail to find a job in your state, most probably nobody will prevent you to get a job inter-state. However, during the citizenship application, there is a possibility that it might be asked.
- A very common misconception is the validity of PR. The validity of PR itself is indefinite which means you can stay rest of your life in Australia with this Visa. However your entry permit will be expired in 5 years from the day of the grant. That means, let say you have your PR granted on 1st March 2016. Then if you need to leave Australia after 1st March 2021, you won't be allowed to re-enter Australia with this Visa (you have to apply for Resident Return Visa in such case, which is not always very easy to get approved). However it is possible that you enter 28th Feb 2021 (the last day of your entry permit validity) and live Australia happily ever after without leaving the country (until you get citizenship).