The Department of Home Affairs (DHA) has confirmed that the new Temporary Skills Shortage (TSS) has come into effect as of Sunday 18th March 2018.
The new TSS Visa which replaces the 457 Visa program affects both sponsors and applicants. Below is an outline of the changes that sponsors must be aware of.
Training benchmark for sponsors
Previously, the Skilling Australia Fund (SAF) Levy was supposed the replace the previous training benchmarks for sponsors. To date the legislation to support the SAF levy has not passed through the Senate, so the DHA has decided to proceed without it. The result of this is that the current training benchmark for sponsors will still apply.
If you are applying for a new Standard Business Sponsorship you do not currently have to provide any evidence of training. As the SAF is not in place you may also nominate an employee now and avoid this fee.
Labour Market Testing
LMT has not yet changed, however, we have been given the following guidelines. The job advertisement must meet these requirements;
Advertised within the past 6 months for at least 4 weeks
State the salary range
Advertised in two separate job sites or newspapers
State the location and be able to be seen by people in that location
No gumtree or similar.
Renewal of sponsorship
The DHA has reduced the complexity of renewing sponsorship. This includes reduced data entry and a shortened application form allowing much easier renewal for 5 years, and in most cases will be renewed automatically.
Renewals will only be slower if you are seeking sponsorship approval for the first time, if you declare you don’t meet accreditation criteria or if the DHQ has integrity concerns regarding your sponsorship status.
As a matter of course, you shouldn’t wait until the last minute to renew your sponsorship and we recommend that you commence the renewal process at least a few months before it expires.
Any changes to your obligations as a sponsor will be minimal and only be as a result of changes to the TSS visa provisions.
Accreditation criteria are being reviewed – and hopefully opened up to more employers
The ability to attain accredited sponsor status is being reviewed by the DHA. We are advised the objective is to open up the benefits to more employers. Whilst the detail has not been confirmed, we are hopeful that more employers will be able to access the benefits of accredited status. Those being priority processing of visa nominations and automatic approval of nominations that meet all the right criteria.
Changes to notification requirement of events
From 18th March, notifications will no longer be accepted by standard mail. Notifications must occur by one of two options:
By email to the address specified in the appropriate legislative instrument.
Online via the new ‘notification of sponsor changes’ form within ImmiAccount
If you have any questions regarding these changes please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us on 1300 474 664