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Australia’s Temporary Skills Shortage Visa


The New Temporary Skilled Worker Visa

The Prime Minister of Australia, Malcolm Turnbull, announced on April 18th 2017, that the country will be abolishing the Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 457 visa) and replacing it with the Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa. The new visa is expected to address genuine skill shortages in Australian businesses in a more fair and effective manner than the 457 visa. The TSS visa will operate on roughly the same parameters as a H1B visa for USA. The TSS will allow skilled workers from predefined fields to work for approved businesses for a period of four years from date of issue, In case of occupations belonging to the Medium and Long term Strategic Skilled List (MTSSL) category, and two years from date of issue otherwise. The visa applicant has to be sponsored by an Australian business and cannot apply for the visa on his own. Moreover the employer sponsoring the candidate has to make sure that first preference is given to Australian citizens and permanent residents and that no Australian citizen or permanent resident has been found who is qualified and willing to take up the role. The visa application can be made either by persons already staying in Australia or from outside the country. Apart from introducing new parameters to the skilled worker visa, the TSS visa will also introduce the following reforms to the visa process

  1.  The new visa program will revamp the eligible occupation list to better reflect the skills needed in the Australian labor market.

  2. Employers will be mandated to pay the workers at Australian market salary rate and also to meet the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold (TSMIT). This would  ensure that overseas workers will not  be hired as cheaper alternatives to Australians

  3. visa applicants will now be mandatorily required to have at least two years’ work experience in their skilled occupation

  4. Visa holders under the Short-Term stream can avail of only one onshore visa renewal

  5. Visa holders under the Medium-Term stream  can renew visa onshore and also apply for permanent residence for visa renewal onshore and a permanent residence on completion of three years

  6. The visa applicant will have to obtain a penal clearance certificate

  7. Tax File Numbers will be collected by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection and will be matched with the Australian Tax Office’s record

  8.  Labor market testing will be mandatory except in case of an international obligation.

  9. the eligibility period for permanent residence will be increased from two years to three years

  10. To ensure that employers are not actively discriminating against Australian workers a non-discriminatory workforce test would be conducted periodically

  11. Employers will compulsorily need to train Australian workers


?Eligibility for Temporary Skilled Worker Visa

A number of changes were also announced to the eligibility criteria for the new Temporary skilled worker visa, which included the following

  1. Visa applicants would now be required to have at least three years of relevant work experience, whereas no specific number of years were mandated for the 457 visa

  2. The minimum eligible IELTS score in individual test sections has been increased to 5 from 4.5

  1. The visa applicant must not be over 45 years old at the time of application.

The new Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa is expected to be introduced from March 2018 onwards. While it is still early days to comment on the efficacy of the new visa scheme, it is already generating a lot of interest. To know more about the Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa and how you can benefit from it, get in touch with Global Tree one of the best immigration consultants in India.