The media was quick to jump in on Turnbull's announcement regarding "abolition" of the 457 visa scheme which naturally has both existing and future 457 visa applicants worried.
This is what we know so far in regards to the the proposed reforms due to come into effect in March 2018.
- The new visa will be called Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa and will come into effect in March 2018
- There will be two streams, a Short-Term stream of up to two years and a Medium-Term stream of up to four years
- This visa will replace existing 457 visa and will likely impact existing subclass 186 visa
As published on DIBP's website, key changes anticipated will include the following:
- new, more targeted occupation lists which better align with skill needs in the Australian labour market requirement for visa applicants to have at least two years’ work experience in their skilled occupation
- a minimum market salary rate which ensures that overseas workers cannot be engaged to undercut Australian workers
- mandatory labour market testing, unless an international obligation applies,
- capacity for only one onshore visa renewal under the Short-Term stream
- capacity for visa renewal onshore and a permanent residence pathway after three years under the Medium-Term stream
- the permanent residence eligibility period will be extended from two to three years
- a non-discriminatory workforce test to ensure employers are not actively discriminating against Australian workers
- strengthened requirement for employers to contribute to training Australian workers
- the Department of Immigration and Border Protection will collect Tax File Numbers and data will be matched with the Australian Tax Office’s records, and
- mandatory penal clearance certificates to be provided.
In addition, foreign nationals will need to meet the following:
- tightened English language requirements
- a requirement for visa applicants to have at least three years’ work experience
- applicants must be under the maximum age requirement of 45 at the time of application
- strengthened requirement for employers to contribute to training Australian workers, and
- employers must pay the Australian market salary rate and meet the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold
Some of the reforms such as review of the current skilled occupations list will take effect immediately whilst the rest of the changes are expected to be fully implemented by March 2018. Full details can be found at http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Work/457-abolition-replacement.
with any questions.