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General

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The Migration Alliance has received a report about a bizarre, strange, astounding and insane situation from one of our colleagues!

Here’s the story:

A person who was charged with a criminal offence, and who out on bail and awaiting sentence in about a month’s time, approached our colleagues for advice and assistance.

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It has been somewhat of a turmoil in Australian Immigration arena since the announcement made by the Turnbull Government on 17 April 2017 to phase out the existing Temporary Work (Skilled) (subclass 457) visa (“457 visa”) and introduce a new replacement visa, the Temporary Skill Shortage Visa (“TSS visa”).  The main confusion and frustration following the announcement lies in the fact that there has been little or no prior consultation.  The announcement blindsided both Migration Agents as well as current and prospective visa applicants.

Migration Alliance is here to inform you of key dates relevant to new TSS visa as well as existing 457 visa:

  • 19 April 2017 – Removal of 218 skilled occupations from list of sponsorable occupations as well as introduction of two new skilled occupations lists:
    • Medium - Long Term Strategic List (MLTSSL) and Short Term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL)
    • Changes to the validity period of a 457 visa for applications lodged and/or approved on or after 19 April 2017.  Two years will be granted if the occupation is on STSOL or up to four years if the occupation is on MLTSSL
    • Opportunity given by DIBP to withdraw a 457 nomination and/or visa application in progress where an occupation is no longer on the either list
  • 1 July 2017 – Further review of existing 457 visa arrangements
    • Possible removal of occupations from both lists (MLTSSL and STSOL)
    • Introduction of providing police clearance as part of the 457 visa application process
    • Changes to existing training benchmark requirements
    • Changes to English language requirements
  • 1 December 2017 – Data Matching Introduced
    • DIBP will start collecting Tax File Numbers (TFN) for existing 457 visa holders for the purpose of cross checking salary against earnings declared on a recent 457 nomination
  • March 2018 – Abolition of the 457 visa and introduction of the TSS visa
    • 457 visas will be abolished
    • TSS will be introduced
    • There will be two streams available under TSS
      • Short Term Stream Visa will be valid for two years which will not lead to permanent residency
      • Medium Term Stream Visa will be valid for up to four years with potential pathway to permanent residency after three years
      • Caveats for certain occupations including minimum salary requirements as well as certain occupations reserved exclusively for regional areas
      • Mandatory prior employment experience for both streams
      • Labour Market Testing (unless exempt under International Obligations)
      • A non discriminatory workforce test to be introduced

To add to the confusion already created last week, it appears that revised instrument specifying occupations listed under MLTSSL and STSOL released on 19 April 2017 appears to be no longer in force which left us with the previous list.  As expected, DIBP is yet to update this information and I encourage everyone to check legislation regularly before submitting an application during this transition. For further information please contact me at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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The contribution of migrants to Australian society, culture and prosperity has been an important factor in shaping our nation. From the large scale migration from the UK and Europe which began at the end of the second world war to meet labour shortages and create prosperity to programs, attracting business people and entrepreneurs including the Significant Investor Visa which has attracted applicants have come from China. 

Migration agents are invited to come along to this event and hear the from The Hon Alex Hawke MP, as well as the market insights from BasisPoint founder, David Chin. There will be followed by a panel of speakers from second generation migrant families from Europe and China who will share their stories and experiences of investing and integrating into Australia.

Date: Wednesday 3rd May, 2017

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If it wasn’t already clear enough, a decision of the Full Court of the Federal Court that was handed down yesterday, 26 April 2017, emphasizes just how excruciatingly difficult it is to challenge a decision of the Minister to refuse to revoke the mandatory cancellation of a visa on character grounds.

In the vast majority of cases, challenging such decisions by the Minister will have a degree of difficulty analogous to trying to push a huge boulder up a very steep hill.

In order to successfully overturn a decision to refuse to revoke the cancellation of a visa in Federal Court, the visa holder must show that the decision was “infected” by jurisdictional error.  There is no such thing as “merits review” of the refusal to revoke the mandatory cancellation. And the grounds for establishing jurisdictional error are extremely narrow.

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Seats are still available for “TOEFL Insights for Agents”, a workshop for migration agents and migration lawyers to help them stay informed about the choices of English-language tests for skilled migrants. The sessions are led by TOEFL® test experts Helen Cook and Cath Moore from ETS Global.

The free, two-hour session is being offered in Sydney on May 2, and in Adelaide on May 16.  Further sessions for other locations are planned later in the year.

The session is designed to:

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