The Department of Home Affairs (DHA) has recently made public further information on the TSS Visa (subclass 482) which will be rolled out in March 2018 in replacement of the 457 Temporary Work (Skilled) visa. While many aspects of the new visa are still before parliament, departmental releases and information made available to the Migration industry Association provide a clearer picture of how the new visa will operate.
The TSS is still on course to be introduced at some point in March 2018, however the 1 March implementation has been delayed.
The subclass number has been identified as 482. It remains to be seen whether the visa will be commonly known in time as the “TSS” or as the “482”.
What will the new visa look like for applicants?
- The TSS will consist of a short-term stream and a medium-term stream. If you have an occupation on the ShortTerm Skilled Occupations List (STSOL) you will be eligible for a visa grant for up to two years and will be able to apply for a further two year visa (so up to 4 years in total).
If you have an occupation on the Medium and Long-Term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) you will be able to apply for a further visa for a period of stay of up to four years (6 years in total) and be eligible to apply for permanent residency after three years.
- Visa applicants will need to demonstrate being a Genuine Temporary Entrant. This requirement will be considered met by the department unless an applicant has a history of holding multiple short term visas within the last 4 to 5 years. The exact visas which fall within this short term visa category are yet to be clarified by the department.
What will the new visa look like for sponsors?
- Sponsoring employers may be subject to a new Non Discriminatory Workforce Test. Information regarding operation of this test remains unknown at this point, however it is believed the test may apply only to sponsors whose compositional work force (eg. amount of temporary visa holders / Australian citizens and permanent residents) is considered by the department as being outside of accepted industry norms.
- Labour Market Testing (LMT) will continue to apply with existing requirements anticipated to be clarified, particularly, the length of time for which a position will need to be advertised, the methods considered acceptable for placements of advertisements and the circumstances allowing for exemptions in undertaking Labour Market Testing.
- Sponsoring employers will be subject to a new training contribution charge for nominations. While legislation introducing the charge is still before parliament, it is foreseeable that employers who nominate workers under either the temporary or permanent skilled migration programs will be required to pay the nomination training contribution charge. Existing training benchmark obligations will continue to apply until the training contribution charge is formally implemented.
- Accredited Sponsor Arrangements will continue, the department making clear revised sponsorship accreditation criteria will ensure that more sponsoring employers will benefit from the arrangements, including priority processing of nominations and associated visa applications as well as autoapproval of specified nominations.
What will the new visa look like overall?
Processing arrangements for the 482 visa will retain the existing 3 stage application process for subclass 457, consisting of sponsorship, position nomination and visa application. Similarly, streamlined arrangements will continue for sponsors and applicants to whom Australian international trade agreement obligations apply and priority processing will extend to applications the department considers low risk.