The Department of Immigration has announced significant changes to the 457 visa requirements. A summary of these changes can be found below:
• The list of English language providers has been expanded, to include:
o Test of English as a Foreign Language – Internet Based Test (TOEFL IBT),
o Pearson Test of English (PTE); and,
o Cambridge English Advanced (CAE) test (conducted on or after 1 January 2015).
• The Department will now accept an overall test score with minimum scores for each test component (reading, writing, speaking and listening). For example; for IELTS results the minimum overall band score required is 5 but minimum score for each band needs only to be 4.5
• English requirements can be exempted when an applicant provides evidence of five cumulative years of study at the secondary or tertiary level conducted in English. This replaces the older more restrictive requirement of five years consecutive secondary or tertiary study.
• The length of standard business sponsorships has been extended to 5 years commencing from the date of approval.
• The length of standard business sponsorships for start-up businesses has been extended from twelve (12) months to eighteen (18) months.
• The market salary exemption threshold has been reduced from $250,000 to $180,000 (which is now in line with the marginal tax rate).
• The notification period for sponsors has been extended from 10 working days to 28 calendar days.
These changes will increase flexibility and reduce restrictions on 457 business sponsors and applicants.
Alliance International Migration Services (AIMS) is available to advise on the above 457 changes and how it will affect you or your business. If you need assistance with a 457 visa, sponsor or nomination application please contact us today for a no-obligation chat on +61 3 9078 6819 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, visit www.thinkvisa.com.au for more information, including details of our temporary visa credentials, fixed price offering and free online assessment option.