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Expected visa reforms in 2018 and beyond!

For those who have been following the changes to Australia’s immigration laws and policies over the last 12 months, it will come as no surprise that significant changes to visa laws are to be expected in 2018 and beyond.

As we brought to your attention last year, the first quarter of 2018 will be marked by the abolition of the Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 457) and the introduction of the new Temporary Skills Shortage (TSS) Visa. The new visa system will rely on the short-term (2 year visa) and long-term (4 year visa) streams. The duration of the visa will depend on whether an occupation is on the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) or the Short-term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL). It is likely that there will be further changes to these lists prior to the commencement of the TSS Visa system in March 2018.

The new TSS visa is expected to have tighter regulatory requirements in comparison to the 457 visa by increasing work experience requirements; increasing English language requirements; implementing mandatory and specific Labour Market Testing as well as and introducing a mandatory training levy.

Changes to Australia’s visa system are not expected to end here. It is evident that the Australian Government is also introducing a series of bureaucratic reforms that should be expected to drastically change Australia’s immigration landscape leading up to 2020.

On 15 September 2017, the Australian Government concluded its public consultation that focused on the design of a new visa system for the purpose of streamlining, refining and modernising the current Australian visa system. It is likely that the outcome of the government’s research in this respect will be brought to light later this year.

In the final days of 2017, we were gifted one final yet robust change: the Department of Immigration and Border Protection amalgamated and replaced by the new Department of Home Affairs, which also absorbed most, if not all other national security functions.

With change on the horizon, SCA Connect is committed to keeping you updated with latest in Australian immigration policy and reform and ensuring that your visa and sponsorship arrangements are compliant with current laws and regulations.

Disclaimer: The information provided herein is of a general nature only and does not constitute immigration advice. For more detailed and case specific information or advice, please contact SCA Connect.


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