Migration Services Update:

Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) and Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS)/Regional Sponsor Migration Scheme (RSMS) visas

27 June 2018

Maria Jockel , Legal Principal and National Leader, Migration Services |

The Department of Home Affairs (the Department) continues to make further changes to the law and the Visa Applicant Charges (VAC) as part of its ongoing reform program.

More detail will be provided, including as to the changes to the application forms, once they are made known by the Department post - 1 July 2018.

Some of the known changes which will come into effect on or after 1 July 2018 include:

Skilling Australians Fund (SAF)

It is expected that the SAF will be implemented during the first quarter of 2018-19.

Once implemented:

  • The SAF Levy will be payable on TSS, subclass 186 and 187 nomination applications
  • Labour Market Testing (LMT) will need to be conducted:
    • For a period of 4 weeks
    • No more than 4 months before the nomination is lodged
  • Advertisements must set out any skills or experience requirements that are appropriate to the nominated occupation
  • The nominated position may be advertised on LinkedIn’s online recruitment platform and industry specific recruitment websites that are relevant to the nominated occupation.

Approved 457/482 Sponsors are still obligated to meet training benchmark requirements until the implementation of the SAF.

VAC increases

The first instalment VAC for the TSS visa will increase from 1 July 2018 as follows:

  • For applicants in the Short-term stream:
    Applicable Charge Current VAC New VAC
    Base application charge $1150 $1175
    Additional applicant charge for an applicant who is at least 18 years old $1150 $1175
    Additional applicant charge for an applicant who is less than 18 years old $290 $295
  • For applicants in the Medium-term stream:
    Applicable Charge Current VAC New VAC
    Base application charge $2400 $2455
    Additional applicant charge for an applicant who is at least 18 years old $2400 $2455
    Additional applicant charge for an applicant who is less than 18 years old $600 $615
  • The first instalment VAC for the subclass 186/187 visas are as follows:
    Applicable Charge Current VAC New VAC
    Base application charge $3670 $3755
    Additional applicant charge for an applicant who is at least 18 years old $1835 $1875
    Additional applicant charge for an applicant who is less than 18 years old $920 $940

Biometrics Facial Images for TSS visa applicants

From 1 July 2018, applicants for the TSS visa applicants will be required to provide a good quality full-face view photograph with their application.

A tool is now available when lodging applications online to provide facial images of higher quality.

This is part of the Department’s large-scale biometrics storage and processing capabilities, which includes analysis and data sharing of facial images and sharing of data generally.

These changes add to what is already a highly complex and dynamic system of law and policy. Both individuals and organisations need to seek specialist advice to meet their visa and related aims.

We look forward to updating you about the ongoing reform program of the Department post - 1 July 2018, when the Department will announce further changes.