The Shift From 457 to TSS Visas
March is coming. The 457 Visa is going. The Temporary Skills Shortage (TSS) Visa is coming to replace it. And there’s nothing we can do to change that.
Or is there?
Next week the Co-Convenor of the Victorian AHRI International HR Management Network, Ariel Brott, will be meeting with representatives of the Department of Home Affairs, Immigration’s new name. This meeting will be a two-way briefing on the forthcoming changes and the Department have asked to hear stakeholder concerns, questions and submissions.
This is your opportunity to get a head start on the March changes and possibly make a difference to the final form of the new laws and their policy implementation.
Any issues facing AHRI members are of interest, with views in particular on the following three areas:
- Labour Market Testing (LMT)
Under the current system, employers must “test” the local labour market (i.e. advertise a position locally) in the 12 months prior to applying for a 457 Nomination, but only for a minority of occupations. Under the new system, employers will have to advertise in the 6 months prior, for at least 28 days, and this will apply to all occupations.
- Work Experience
The new TSS Visa will require Nominees to have at least 2 years of full-time post-qualification experience in the nominated occupation or a related field. This reflects a Government intention to prevent the sponsorship of new graduates in favour of experienced Nominees. There will be limited exceptions to this requirement, including experience gained in the course of:
- a master’s degree or PhD by research
- performance experience in performing arts occupations
- internships and placements for medical practitioners.
- Age Exemptions
Broadly speaking, a subclass 457 holder seeking to transition to permanent residency must currently be under 50 years of age, with the following exceptions:
- Senior academics nominated by a university in Australia
- Scientists, researchers or technical specialists at ANZSCO skill level one or two nominated by an Australian government scientific agency
- Certain medical practitioners who have been working in their nominated occupation as a 457 visa holder for at least four years before applying, at least two years of which have been in regional Australia, and have been nominated for a position in regional Australia
- 457 visa holders who have been paid annually by their nominating employer at or above the Fair Work High Income Threshold in each of the previous four years
- Subclass 444 (New Zealand citizen) visa holders applying through the Direct Entry stream who have been working for their nominating employer for at least two of the previous three years.
These exemptions will continue to be available under the TSS Visa; however the threshold age will be reduced to 45 years, and the length of time required to be eligible for some of the exemptions will be decreased to three years.
Your views are invited and all responses will be treated anonymously. To contribute your feedback on these issues please visit the following survey where your views will be collated and heard by those managing this regulatory change.
Thank you for your contribution. Ideally you can provide your input prior to Thursday 8 February, but we are happy to hear from you any time up to Wednesday 14 February. Ariel Brott will be reporting back to AHRI members on the outcome later in February.