Have you kept up to date with the 457 Visa changes made in 2017?

This year has seen quite a number of changes to the 457 visa, as well as the permanent residency employer nominated visas. For example, the number of eligible occupations has been reduced, with a splitting of the occupations so that some occupations can only access a 4 year visa, whilst the others will only be granted for 2 years. The intention is that from March 2018, those occupations granted for 2 years will only be able to access a further 2 years with no pathway to permanent residency. In July, mandatory English language and Character requirements were introduced for all 457 visa applicants. Whilst employer nominated permanent residency applicants now have tougher English language and skill  requirements and must be less than 45 years of age (with some limited exemptions).

Is the government done yet with these changes?

No. The Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) will start collecting Tax File Numbers (TFN) and that data will be matched with the Australian Tax Office’s records to ensure that all employer nominated visa holders are not paid less than their nominated salary. The DIBP anticipates this to be in place prior to the end of December 2017.

Significantly, the Federal Government will abolish the 457 visa and replace it with the Temporary Skills Shortage (TSS) visa by March 2018.  The Training Benchmark obligations will in turn be removed and be replaced with a mandatory Skilling Australians fund contribution per TSS visa applicant, for each year of service required.

How can Macpherson Kelley Lawyers help your business?

We are employment lawyers with a dedicated practice specialising in corporate and business related migration. Our team will work with you to provide you with specific strategies around how Australian migration matters affect your business and assist in providing practical and timely advice around employment and compliance issues.

For a summary of the significant changes made to the 457 Visa announced by the Immigration Minister, Peter Dutton, click here.

For more information on all the Visa changes made this year, please contact us.

This article was written by Ricky Bustos, Senior Associate – Workplace Relations and Migration Agent (MARN 1067361) and Adriana Reina, Associate – Workplace Relations and Migration Agent (MARN 1277847)