From March 2018, certain very important changes will be made to the permanent employer sponsored skilled visa programs.
- Occupation lists: The MLTSSL will now apply to the Direct Entry stream for both the ENS and the RSMS, with additional occupations available through the RSMS to support regional employers.
- Minimum market salary rate: Employers must pay the Australian market salary rate and meet the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold (set at $53,900 as of 12 April 2016).
- Residency: The eligibility period to transition to permanent residence will be extended from two to three years.
- Work experience: At least three years’ work experience relevant to the particular occupation will be required.
- Age: All applicants must be under the maximum age requirement of 45 at the time of application. - Training requirement: Employers nominating a worker for an ENS or RSMS visa will be required to pay a contribution to the Skilling Australians Fund. The contribution will be (1) payable in full at the time the worker is nominated; and (2) $3,000 for small businesses (those with annual turnover of less than $10 million) and $5,000 for other businesses.
People who held, or had applied for, a subclass 457 visa on 18 April 2017 will be able to access certain existing provisions under the Temporary Residence Transition stream.
- Occupation requirements remain the same (i.e. there are no restrictions as long as the nominee continues to work in the same position for the same employer as approved for their subclass 457 visa);
- the age requirement will remain at less than 50 years of age; and
- the work experience requirement, and the requirement to have worked at least two out of the three years prior to nomination on a subclass 457, will remain at two years.