What You Need to Know about the 457 Visa in Australia
For years, the visa 457 has been one of the most common work visas in Australia. Employers wishing to fill skill shortages could sponsor foreign workers for the subclass 457 visa—also known as the Temporary Work (Skilled)—to fill key capacities within their organisations. While the 457 is technically a temporary visa, it also proved to be a major stepping stone to help foreign workers transition to permanent residency. By giving visa holders the experience necessary to apply for permanent residency, the 457 visa has long been important to many classes of immigrants.
The Abolition and Replacement of the 457 Visa in Australia
Soon, though, the visa 457 in Australia will cease to exist. In April 2017, the Australian Government announced plans to abolish and replace the Temporary Work (Skilled) visa. Beginning in March of 2018, the visa as we have known it will no longer be available for employers or skilled workers from overseas.
The brand-new replacement visa—called the TSS, or Temporary Skill Shortage visa—will serve a similar purpose for employers wishing to hire temporary skilled workers from overseas. The new visa programme will include short-term streams and medium-term streams. Short-term visas will last for up to two years, while medium-term can last up to four. Since the TSS visa aims to help businesses circumnavigate ‘genuine skill shortages,’ the Department of Immigration and Border Protection will create ‘more targeted occupation lists’ of the types of jobs that qualify for TSS visa sponsorship and hiring. These lists are meant to prioritise Australian workers and push employers to hire nationals rather than internationals when possible.
In essence, the new visa will tighten the requirements and regulations surrounding temporary skilled worker visas. Employers and applicants alike will want to pay attention to these requirements and how they differ from the existing visa 457. Some jobs that used to be eligible under the 457 visa may no longer qualify for the TSS visa, and other factors are set to change as well. For instance, the TSS visa will have tighter English language requirements, while the permanent residency eligibility period will shift from the current two-year requirement to three years.
To learn more details of how the Temporary Skill Shortage visa will diverge from the visa 457 currently used in Australia, you can click here. That page, maintained by Australia’s immigration department, includes the most comprehensive rundown on the internet of everything set to change with the implementation of the TSS visa.
Get Ready for the TSS Visa Programme with the Help of Active Migration Australia
For years, Active Migration Australia has helped employers sponsor skilled foreign workers through the 457 visa programme in Australia. While much is set to change with next year’s full TSS adoption, at least one thing won’t: Active Migration will still be here to help. If your business is suffering a skill shortage and can’t attract a sufficient applicant pool domestically, we can assist you in looking and hiring beyond national lines.
To learn more about the 457 visa, the upcoming TSS visa or how Active Migration Australia can help your business navigate the skilled worker visa process, give us a call on +61 (08) 9447 2226.