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What is Temporary Work (Skilled) Visa (Subclass 457)?
The Temporary Work (Skilled) Visa (Subclass 457) was a popular visa program in Australia that allowed employers to sponsor skilled overseas workers for a temporary period. It provided a pathway for businesses to address skill shortages by recruiting skilled workers from overseas when suitable Australian workers were not available. The visa allowed individuals to work in Australia for up to four years, with the opportunity to bring their family members to Australia as dependents.
To be eligible for the Subclass 457 visa, individuals needed to have a valid job offer from an approved Australian employer. They were required to possess the relevant skills and qualifications for the nominated occupation and meet the health and character requirements. Additionally, they had to demonstrate proficiency in English unless exempted based on their nationality or occupation. The visa allowed workers to live and work in Australia temporarily, contributing to the Australian economy while gaining valuable work experience and cultural exposure.
In a joint announcement, the Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP and the Hon Peter Dutton MP, Prime Minister and Minister for Immigration and Border Protection of Australia, respectively, declared the end of Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 457 visa). The new Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa was introduced to help assuage genuine shortages in skills within the country.
Eligibility Criteria for Visa Subclass 457
The main visa applicant must:
- Be nominated to work in an approved occupation on the Consolidated Sponsored Occupations List (CSOL)
- Meet the skill requirements for the nominated occupation
- Be required to do a skill assessment depending on the occupation and/or country of passport
- Meet registration and licensing obligations (if applicable)
- Meet the English language requirement
- Have been nominated by an approved business
English language requirements:
It is important that the main applicant can speak, write and understand a sufficient level of English while working in Australia. The following tests are used to determine the level of English language proficiency:
- International English Language Testing System (IELTS) - overall test score of at least 5.0 with a score of at least 4.5 in each of the four test components
- Occupational English Test (OET) - Score of at least ‘B’ in each of the four components
- Test of English as a Foreign Language Internet-Based test (TOEFL iBT) - total score of at least 36 with a score of at least 3 for each of the test components of listening and reading, and a score of at least 12 for each of the test components of writing and speaking.
- Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic Test - overall PTE Academic test score of at least 36 with a score of at least 30 in each of the four test components
- Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) Test (which was conducted on or after 1 January 2015) - overall test score of at least 154 with a score of at least 147 in each of the four test components.
- Health Requirements - all applicants must meet certain health requirements. The health examinations will depend on various personal factors such as country of citizenship, period of stay, time spent in another country during the last five years, and the intended activities in Australia.
- Health Insurance - all applicants must have adequate health insurance, which should provide at least the level of coverage required for the purpose of the stay.
- Character requirements - all applicants must meet certain character requirements and may be requested to provide a police certificate, if applicable.
Application Process for Visa Subclass 457
New applications for this visa are no longer being accepted.
If you applied for or were granted a 457 visa before April 18, 2017, you may still be eligible to apply for permanent residency through the previous Temporary Residence Transition Stream.
Occupation: If your occupation has been transferred to the short-term or regional occupation lists or has been removed entirely from the skilled occupation lists, you can still apply for permanent residency via the transition stream.
Age: The age limit for seeking permanent residency through the transition stream is still 50.
Work Experience: Before applying for PR, you must work for the same nominating employer for two years.
Skilling Australians Fund (SAF) Training Levy: The new training levy (SAF) of $3000 or $5000 will be applied to your permanent visa application. Your employer is required to pay this levy.
Rights and Responsibilities
The Temporary Work (Skilled) Visa (Subclass 457) grants certain rights and responsibilities to its holders. Here are the rights and responsibilities associated with this visa:
- Visa holders have the right to work in Australia for the duration of their visa, as long as it is with the sponsor who nominated their position. In the case of medical practitioners and general managers, they can work for employers other than their sponsor or an associated entity of their sponsor.
- Visa holders have the privilege of bringing their family members to Australia. Dependents can work or study during their stay.
- Visa holders can travel in and out of Australia as frequently as desired throughout the validity of their visa.
- Visa holders must work only in their nominated occupation as approved by their sponsor. They are expected to commence work within 90 days of arriving in Australia (if outside the country when the visa was granted) or within 90 days of the visa grant (if already in Australia).
- Visa holders must obtain any mandatory licenses, registrations, or memberships required for their occupation within 90 days of their arrival or visa grant. They are also required to comply with any provisions related to their occupation.
- Visa holders must notify the Department of Home Affairs in writing if their license, registration, or membership application is refused or if their existing license, registration, or membership ceases, is revoked, or is cancelled.
- If visa holders cease employment with their sponsor, they must take appropriate action within 60 days. They can find another employer to sponsor them and have a new nomination approved, apply for a different visa, or depart Australia.
- If visa holders wish to continue working in Australia after their current visa expires, they must apply for another Subclass 457 visa. Changing employers or nominated occupations does not require a new visa application, but a new nomination must be lodged and approved before commencing work with the new employer or in the new position.
Planning to apply for the Subclass 457 visa? Contact AECC for expert guidance and support throughout your visa application process.
Frequently Asked Questions
The Temporary Work Skilled Visa (subclass 457) is a now-discontinued visa program in Australia that allows employers to sponsor skilled overseas workers for a temporary period.