Department of Home Affairs (DoHA) has abolished 457 visa effective 18 March 2018.The new visa, Temporary Skilled Shortage (TSS) subclass 482 visa has been introduced as a replacement of 457. The 457 visa system has been misused in many ways for several years and as a result, Department of Home Affairs decided to end it completely. There are few changes in ENS and RSMS visa too.
The new announcement includes new occupation list for Subclass 482(TSS), ENS and RSMS effective 18th April 2018. You can choose occupations from Short Term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL) or Medium and Long Term Stretegic Skills List (MLTSSL) for TSS visa, however you need to remember, if you chose occupation from STSOL, you will be eligible for only 2 years of TSS visa. This visa can be renewed once. There is no pathway for Permanent Residency. Please note, you will need to satisfy GTE criteria, which works similar to current student visa program. If you chose list from MLTSSL, you can apply up to 4 years of TSS visa. You may be eligible for Permanent Residency after three years of work in TSS visa with same employer and on same occupation.
Occupations from MLTSSL lists are available for ENS visa program under TRT program. Additional occupations are available on new RSMS list, named as Regional occupation list (ROL). This list will be further updated in July 2018.
The new Visa application fee for TSS visa has almost doubled to $2400. IELTS requirement for TSS visa for occupation listed in STSOL has remained same as it was for 457 visa before. However you will have to score IELTS score of each band 5 if your occupation is from MLTSSL lists. One of a significant change is two years of full time work experience requirement for TSS Visa and three years of full time experience for ENS or RSMS. The change also includes reduction in Age which applicant must be under 45 at the time of application.
Existing Training Benchmark obligations for employer is being replaced by SAF program, which is yet to pass bill from parliament. The new program will have employer to pay up to $5000 to Skilling Australia Fund.
If you held 457 visa on 18th April 2017, which was granted and continues to hold the same visa will not be affected by the changes for transition to the ENS and RSMS streams.
One positive change we have noticed is Unlike 457 visa, you are eligible to apply for TSS visa, if you do not hold substantive visa or hold BVA, BVB and BVC with no prior visa refusal or cancellation.
The training benchmark is being replaced with SAF (Skilling Australians Fund), pending before the Parliament. When effective, any employer nominating a worker for a TSS visa, will be required to pay a contribution to the SAF up to $5000.
Source: Newsletter issued by DoHA; www.mia.org.au