Time is Running Out to Lodge Visa Applications Prior to 1 July Changes
By Mark Webster
Friday, 24 May 2013
Increase in Visa Application FeesNew surcharges are due to be implemented on 1 July, which include:
- Extra fees for additional dependents being included in the application
- Extra fees for paper lodgement of visa applications where there is an electronic lodgement alternative
- Most application fees increase by 3-4% on 1 July, so expect to pay more even if you are not affected by the above changes
Changes to 457 VisasThe cost of applying for a 457 visa will increase from $455 to $900 from 1 July 2013 (this is an increase of some 98%). Other changes to the 457 program which are likely to commence from 1 July 2013 include:
- Increase in the minimum salary for 457 (TSMIT) - generally this increases by around 4% so expect the current level of $51,400 to increase to around $54,000.
- Changes to the occupations list for Employer Sponsored Visas (CSOL) - the Minister has already expressed concern about the over-use of certain occupations (eg Program or Project Administrator and Specialist Manager NEC). We could potentially see some occupations removed from the approved list, or possibly modified to restrict applications.
- More occupations will require English language testing.
- Stricter training requirements for approval as a business sponsor
- 457 Reforms Discussion Paper Released
- 457 Fees to Increase Significantly on 1 July 2013
- Government to Reform 457 Program
Changes to Points Tested Skilled VisasThe Skilled Occupations List is reviewed each year and is generally changed from 1 July. On top of this, we will see the following from 1 July:
- New State Migration Plans will start coming into effect - as a result, some occupations might no longer be on state lists from 1 July.
- New Occupational Ceilings will come in for the SkillSelect system - as a result, some of the occupations which have already met their ceiling (eg engineering, IT professionals) will become available again.