New accreditation scheme for 457 visas
The Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Chris Bowen MP announced businesses using the subclass 457 visa program can now gain access to priority processing and approval for six years under a new accreditation scheme.
‘This new scheme recognises that many Australian businesses have a long history of dealing with the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) and an excellent record of compliance with workplace and migration laws,’ Mr Bowen said.
‘From 7 November, these businesses will be able to seek accreditation that qualifies them for sponsorship approval of six years rather than the current three, as well as ensuring faster processing times for all future subclass 457 nominations and visa applications.’1
Businesses will need to meet certain criteria to be eligible:
Who is eligible to apply?
Australian businesses that have established a good reputation with the Department of Immigration including lodging a high volume of good quality, decision-ready applications and an excellent record of compliance with relevant laws.
How to apply for sponsorship accreditation:
Accredited status can be applied for by either submitting a new sponsorship application or applying for a variation of a current sponsorship agreement.
Sponsors can apply for accredited status by the same methods as applying to become a standard business sponsor that is by using eVisa or paper form 1196s.
If the employer does not meet the characteristics for accredited status, the application for standard business sponsorship will still proceed and be assessed in the usual way.
If a sponsor does not maintain these characteristics, Accredited Status can be revoked which means priority processing will be retracted. The validity length of the sponsorship cannot be changed, and will remain at six years.
Characteristics that must be met:
Sponsors who want to be approved for Accredited Status must meet all of the following characteristics:
- be a government agency, a publicly-listed company, or a private company, with a minimum of $4 million turnover per year for the last three years
- have been an active subclass 457 visa sponsor for the past three years (with a break of no more than six months, not due to any sanction)
- have no adverse information known about them based on Department of Immigration and Citizenship and Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relation monitoring, including formal warnings and sanctions
- have had at least 30 primary subclass 457 visa holders granted in the previous 12 months
- have lodged a high level of decision-ready applications over the previous two years
- have a non-approval rate of less than three per cent for the previous three years
- have Australian workers comprising at least 75 per cent of their workforce in Australia and a commitment to maintain this level.2
For more information contact:
Migration Agent (MARN 0964316)
Telephone: +61 2 6206 1300
Facsimilie: +61 2 6229 9233
Migration Agent Registration Authority (MARA) – Code of Conduct
1. Chris Bowen MP Minister for Immigration and Citizenship media release. New accreditation scheme for 457 visas
2. Dept. of Immigration: Employer sponsored workers
Last modified: 5, July 2012