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Changes to the subclass 457 visa

The Minister for Immigration and Citizenship has recently announced major (but yet undefined) changes to the Subclass 457 visa, expected to take effect on 1 July 2013.

The proposed changes are as follows:

  • Employers must demonstrate that they are not nominating positions where a genuine shortage does not exist;
  • The English language requirements for certain positions have been raised;
  • The enforceability of existing training requirements for businesses that use the program will be strengthened;
  • The market salary exemption will rise from $180,000 to $250,000;
  • On-hire arrangements of 457 Visa workers will be restricted;
  • Compliance and enforcement powers will be beefed up to stop employers who have routinely abused the 457 system; and
  • Stakeholders will be consulted to ensure market rate provisions more effectively protect local employment.

These changes are intended to prevent many known abuses that are currently not illegal, but are not in keeping with the intent of the program. Such known abuses include:

  • Companies that employ a staff consisting entirely of Subclass 457 visa holders and that have made no attempt to employ Australian citizens or permanent residents;
  • The sponsorship of a person whose nominated occupation is generic, but who is actually engaged in an different occupation; and
  • Artificial market salary rates within a company.

The Migration Place prides itself on its thorough and professionally-prepared applications, which ensures that our applications are lodged with the best prospects of success and processed quickly.

We have been addressing most of these issues for the last 12 months in anticipation of policy adjustments.

For example, in March 2012, we have secured turnaround times of three (3) business days between lodgement of the application and grant of visa.

The Migration Place is a division of the well established Law Firm of Irish Bentley Lawyers, and we treat all visa applications with the same professionalism and thoroughness as a Court matter:

  • By ensuring applications are lodged as quickly as practicable.
  • By ensuring all timelines are met, and all criteria satisfied.
  • By professionally preparing all applications to a legal standard, ensuring that the applications are easy to process, and that our evidence of eligibility is well documented and substantiated.

Our core advice to all people hoping to live in Australia is this: APPLY ASAP (before any rules change), and use an experienced and registered migration agent (preferably a lawyer).

For further information or if you are seeking migration advice, please contact our office on (07) 3891 3333 or by email to mail@themigrationplace.com.

 

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