The latest immigration and visa news for the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, and select European countries - straight from the leading immigrant advocates in the Philippines.
When Changes Take Effect
From 1 July 2017, for the existing 457 visa (Temporary Work Visas)
Occupation lists: The STSOL (previously the Consolidated Skilled Occupations List – CSOL) will be further reviewed based on advice from the Department of Employment. The CSOL lists occupations that skilled migrants could check to determine if their occupation is in demand in a specific State or Territory of Australia.
The MLTSSL (used to be the Skilled Occupations List) will be revised based on outcomes from the review of Australia’s Department of Education and Training in 2017-2018
English language requirements- mandatory: English language salary exemption threshold, which exempts applicants whose salary is over $96,400 from the English language requirement, will be removed.
Character: Provision of penal clearance certificates will become mandatory – for Filipinos, this will be the NBI clearance and if an applicant has worked or resided in any other country for 6 months or more, then a police clearance from each country involved would be required.
Changes by December 2017
Before 31 December 2017, for the existing 457 visa:
Tax Information to be collected. The Department of Immigration and Border Protection (the Department) will start collecting the Tax File Numbers for 457 visa holders (and other employer sponsored migrants). The data collected “will be matched with the Australian Tax Office’s records to ensure that visa holders are not paid less than their nominated salary.”
Outing of Erring Employers. The names and relevant details of employers / sponsors who failed to meet their obligations shall be published.
Changes from March 2018
The 457 visa will be abolished and replaced with the Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa. There will be two categories: the Short-Term stream of up to two years, and a Medium-Term stream of up to four years. In both cases, evidence of non-availability of “suitably skilled Australian worker” is a requirement to qualify for sponsorship.
“Both categories may be used by Australian businesses to recruit “skill gaps with foreign workers” on temporary basis. The Medium Term stream, however, will allow employers to “address shortages in a narrower range of high sckill and critical need occupations.”
Other Criteria for the Short-Term stream
The Medium-Term stream will include the following criteria:
Renewal: Like the ST stream, only applicants in Australia may renew the temporary visa and a pathway towards permanent residency after three years. Occupation List – occupations on the MLTSSL will be eligible for sponsorship for all employers. For sponsors in the regions, additional occupations would be available.
English language requirements: a requirement of a minimum of IELTS 5 (or equivalent test) in each test component – speaking, writing, reading and listening
Complete, official details available through this link - https://www.border.gov.au/WorkinginAustralia/Documents/abolition-replacement-457.pdf
Authors & Contributors
Crispin R. Aranda is an established International Visa Conselor and Immigrant Advocate. He is the president of IVC and is in several migration radio programs.
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