Employer Sponsored Visas

457 – Temporary Work Visas

This is the most commonly used program for employers to sponsor overseas workers to work in Australia on a temporary basis.

Who is eligible for a Temporary Skilled Visa?

Employers can be either Australian businesses or overseas businesses. This visa is for employers who would like to employ overseas workers to fill nominated skilled positions in Australia.

With this visa you can employ overseas workers for a period of between three (3) months and four (4) years in occupations that appear on the Skilled Occupation List. Note for start up businesses the initial visa period available is 12 months.

Employer & Position Requirements for the Temporary Skilled Visa:An employer needs to be approved as a sponsor in order to employ skilled workers from overseas.

  • If you are an employer with a business that operates in Australia, you must meet benchmarks relating to the training of Australian citizens and permanent residents.
  • Generally you must demonstrate the equivalent of 1% of gross wages is or will be spent on training per annum.
  • If you are an employer with a business that has no formal operating base or representation in Australia, you may apply to bring employees to Australia to do one of the following:(a)establish a business operation in Australia.(b)fulfill obligations for a contract or other business activity in Australia.
  • Note: Overseas Business Sponsors do not need to be operating in Australia but may need to meet other employer eligibility requirements.
  • From 27 June 2009, there has been a requirement for sponsors under subclass 457 visa program to attest that they have a strong record of, or a demonstrated commitment to:
  • employing local labour &
  • non-discriminatory employment practices
  • To meet this requirement, there must be nothing adverse known about the business or a person associated with the business.

 Employer & Position Requirements for the Temporary Skilled Visa

  • As an employee, you must meet all the following requirements:
  • be sponsored by an employer to fill a genuine nominated position
  • have skills, qualifications, experience and an employment background which match those required for the position
  • have English language skills equivalent the position.  Passport holders of certain countries do not have to satisfy this requirement
  • be eligible for any relevant licences or registration required for the nominated position if necessary.
  • be able to demonstrate that you are to be paid at least the minimum salary level that applies at the time a decision is made on your visa and at a level consistent with an Australian employee in the Australian labour market
  • You can apply for this visa while you are in Australia, only if the last visa you held is on the prequalifying list.

 Skills assessment

Australia requires all visa applicants to satisfy the criteria for grant of their visa, thus Subclass 457 visa applicants must satisfy certain skills requirements. Where necessary for safety or to prevent fraud, Australia will undertake more extensive skills assessments to confirm skills claimed by applicants.

Australia is improving its skills assessment processes to provide for formal skills testing of some trade occupations. The pilot of this arrangement will commence on 1 July 2009 and be extended as capacities are increased.

 Benefits of a Temporary Skilled Visa

  • With this visa, people you employ from overseas can:
  • work in Australia for a period of between three (3) months and four (4) years (12 months when nominated by a start up business)
  • bring any eligible secondary applicants with them to Australia – secondary applicants can work and study
  • (after entering Australia,) have no limit on the number of times they travel in and out of Australia.

Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS)

The Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) allows employers in regional or low population growth areas of Australia, to sponsor employees who are foreign nationals for a permanent visa to work in Australia.

 Who is eligible for the Regional Skilled Migration Scheme?

  • The employees applying for a visa can be either of the following:
  • skilled workers from overseas
  • skilled temporary residents currently in Australia
  • Visa applicants can apply in or outside of Australia for RSMS (subclass 187) visa.
  • Note: ONLY applicants who hold a substantive visa or relevant birging visa when applying for the RSMS visa (subclass 187) in Australia will be eligible for a bridging visa.

 Other Requirements for the Regional Skilled Migration Scheme

  • Direct Entry
  • A regional certifying body must first certify the nominated position against the following criteria:
  • Business must be actively and lawfully operating in Regional Australia
  • The position must be available for a minimum of two (2) years
  • The business requires a person for the nominated position and satisfies the market rate requirement

In addition to the above, the department will also assess the application against the following criteria:

  • the nomination has been approved by the relevant Regional Certifying Body
  • the business follows all relevant Australian laws and has a satisfactory record of meeting immigration laws (if applicable)
  • the nominated position is in a business operated by the employer
  • the position is being remunerated in accordance with relevant workplace legislation and awards.

The Employee must:

  • have the relevant qualifications and/or work erxperience for the nominated position which are equivalent to the Australian standarad (Skills Assessment may be required in some circumstances)
  • meet any mandatory licensing, registration or professional membership requirements which allow you to work unsupervised and without further training
  • have been offered a full time position for a fixed term of at least two years (supported by evidence of a contract or letter of appointment signed by both the employer and the employee)
  • be under 50 years old
  • have Competent English language ability
  • Note:  Exemption of certain requirements is available.
  • Temporary Residence Transition stream
  • If you have already worked for your nominating employer for two years in Australia, your skills do not need to be assessed.
  • You must have at least vocational English. No Regional Certification is required for this stream.
  • This stream is available only to people who hold a subclass 457 visa. People who hold other 400 series visas may qualify to apply for a permanent residence visa through the Direct Entry stream.

 Benefits of the Regional Skilled Migration Scheme

This visa allows employers operating in regional and low population growth areas of Australia to sponsor skilled workers to fill skilled vacancies in their business.

Employer Nomination Scheme

The Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) allows Australian employers to sponsor employees who are foreign nationals for a permanent visa to work in Australia.

This visa is for Australian employers who want to sponsor highly skilled workers for a permanent visa to work in their business. The employee can be either a highly skilled worker from overseas or a highly skilled temporary resident currently in Australia.

 Who is eligible for the Employer Nomination Scheme?

Visa applicants who currently are in or outside of Australia and have a prospective sponsor can apply for this visa.

 Employer & Position Requirements for the Employer Nomination Scheme

To participate in the Employer Nomination Scheme, the employer must:

  • be actively and lawfully operating a business in Australia
  • have a genuine need for a paid employee to fill a position in their business
  • follow all relevant Australian laws and have a satisfactory record of meeting immigration laws (if applicable)
  • have met training benchmark requirement
  • provide the employee with an offer of permanent employment
  • The nominated position must meet the following requirements:
  • be full-time, ongoing and available for at least 2 years
  • provide working conditions that are no less favourable than provided for under the relevant Australian legislation and awards
  • be a highly skilled occupation that is on the Consolidated Sponsored Occupation List (CSOL) and it must meet the minimum salary level for ENS.

Benefits of an Employer Nomination Scheme Sponsored Visa

This visa allows you and any dependent family members included in your visa application to live as permanent residents in Australia.