The Employer Sponsored 457 visa is the most common visa used by companies to sponsor employees in Australia. It is a temporary visa that allows employees to work for a nominated employer on a full time basis. Many clients successfully use the 457 visa as a pathway to permanent residency.
PLEASE NOTE THAT AS OF APRIL 19TH IMMIGRATION ENFORCED SIGNIFICANT CHANGES TO THE 457 VISA. THESE CHANGES CAME INTO EFFECT ON APRIL 18TH 2017. ADDITIONAL CHANGES WILL COME INTO EFFECT ON THE 1ST OF JULY 2017 AND IN MARCH 2018.
In March 2018, the 457 visa will be abolished and replaced with the TSS visa.
Most companies in Australia, from large corporations to small start-up businesses, can sponsor nominated participants as long as they cannot find an Australian citizen or permanent resident to fill the position and the position being filled must be on the governments Short-Term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL) or Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL).
The maximum duration of 457 visas issued from this date for occupations that are on the STSOL will be two years. Occupations on the MLTSSL will continue to be issued for a maximum duration of four years.
- The visa holder can only work for the sponsoring employer during this time, unless the employee is nominated by another employer
- The employee has the qualifications and skills required to fill the position
- The position that is being filled is on the Governments STSOL or MLTSSL
- The employee holds the required licenses and requirements for the occupation
- The employee has health insurance for the duration of their time in Australia
- The employee cannot be unemployed for more than 60 days continuously
- The employee meets the required level of English language
- The employee is of good health and character
There are usually three steps involved in applying for the 457 visa:
Step 1: The business must apply for approval as a business sponsor by submitting a sponsorship application
To be successful the employer must show:
- The business is operating in a lawful manner
- The business can meet its financial obligations
- The business is devoted to training their staff (Please note on the 1 July 2017, new training benchmarks will be put in effect)
*Please note that it is more difficult for a start up company to be approved as a business sponsor
Step 2: The company must submit a nomination application for the employee
Once successful in receiving approval as a business sponsor, the employer can then apply to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) to nominate a foreign employee to fill the position. The DIBP will decide if the employer fulfills the nomination requirements.
To be successful in nominating an employee the employer must demonstrate that:
- The position that the sponsored employee must fill is on the Skills Occupation List
- The employee must show the need to hire a foreign worker
- The employee must be paid a wage of at least $53 900 (*As of May 2017)
- The foreign employee is receiving employment remuneration equal to that or above that of an Australian citizen.
Step 3: Apply for the visa
- After the employee has been nominated to fill a position, they may then apply for a 457 employer sponsored visa to fill the position.
To be successfully granted the visa the employee must demonstrate that they:
- Possess the required skills, education and qualification to fill the position
- Meet the required English language proficiency requirement
- Are of good character and health
- Have health insurance required for the duration of the visa
Visa Processing Times:
The time taken to process a visa application can vary depending on whether or not the employer must apply for business sponsorship approval or not. The visa application can either be lodged at the same time as the sponsorship or nomination or afterwards. The Immigration and Border Protection website listed the processing time for a subclass 457 visa between 2 -7 months.
How Pathway to Aus helps:
- Companies often have their application to become an approved business sponsor rejected because they do not fully comprehend the requirements. Our migration experts have experience processing 457 visa applications and liaise with DIBP on a regular basis. We fully understand the requirements and will ensure that our clients understand what is required and expected of them.
- Companies often have their business sponsor approval rescinded for not complying with changing regulations. Our Registered Migration experts have years of experience processing 457 visa applications and liaise with DIBP on a regular basis and will keep all employers and employees fully up to speed with obligations of sponsorship.
- Pathway to Aus ensures that all applications are processed as quickly as possible, which is vitally important in situations where time is of the essence. If possible, we aim to submit a decision ready application.
- Our Registered Migration Agents recognise and rectifies potential problems with applications prior to applications being submitted.
- We provide assistance obtaining the required skills assessment
- We provide assistance translating and obtaining any required documents such as degrees, qualification documents and letters of reference.
- We assist with including family members on the application
- We assist with rectifying problems with previous visa applications and seeking waivers for previous conditions imposed
- Finally, we also assist with obtaining the required health insurance
What we will do:
Pathway to Aus will assist with the application throughout the entirety of the process and provide:
- Articulate advice on eligibility requirements and how to meet these requirements
- Assistance obtaining the required supporting documents needed for the application
- Assistance compiling and translating letters of reference.
- Prepare and submit the application to the DIBP
- Liaison with the DIBP throughout every stage of processing
- Provide updates on changing requirements to employers and employees throughout the duration of the visa