Does your business currently engage Subclass 482 or 457 Visa Holders and would you like to know more about Permanent Residence options for these employees? Or are you a skilled professional holding a TSS 482 or 457 Visa? The Subclass 187 Visa to Australia provides businesses with the option to sponsor an employee to transition to Permanent Residence from a Subclass 482 or 457 Visa after working in your business in ‘regional Australia’ for three years. Your business must offer a position that is available for two years after the visa grant date and the applicant must intend to remain in that position for those two years.
As a sponsor, there are certain obligations you need to meet when it comes to visa sponsorship. You must pay the worker the Annual Market Salary Rate (ASMR) and the terms of employment must be no less than those for Australian citizens or Permanent Residents doing the same work in equivalent conditions. Your business must also be an active and lawful business in regional Australia and have a genuine need to fill an eligible skilled position in regional Australia. You must provide evidence that your business complies with Australian immigration and workplace relations laws.
You will also need to offer the skilled position on a full-time and ongoing basis for at least 2 years.
Historically, there were 2 streams of this visa, the Direct Entry stream and the Temporary Residence Transition stream. The Direct Entry stream is, however, closed to new applications from 16 November 2019 and has been replaced by the Subclass 494 Skilled Employer Sponsored (Regional). You are exempt from these criteria if any of the following applies to you:
If during that 3 year period you were stood down or required to work reduced hours due to COVID-19, your earnings and the high-income threshold are assessed at a pro-rata rate for the affected years. This concession applies for applications lodged on or after 24 November 2020 and in relation to periods of COVID-19 related temporary employment changes since 1 February 2020.
If you held (or had applied for and were later granted) a subclass 457 visa on 18 April 2017, you can still apply for this visa if you are under 50 when you apply.
As the Direct Stream is no longer available to new applicants, here’s what you should know about the Temporary Residence Transition stream (TRT).
To apply for 187 Visa Australia (TRT Stream), the employee must be the primary visa holder of a Subclass 457 visa, a Subclass 482 (TSS) visa or an eligible bridging visa. The employee must also be nominated by the employer and have worked for the business on a full-time basis for at least 3 of the 4 years while holding either one of these visas If the 457 visa was applied for before 18 April 2017, the employee must work full-time for at least 2 of the 3 years prior to the nomination. Covid-19 concessions apply so we encourage you to seek professional migration advice. Also, in usual circumstances, the visa applicant must be under 45 years of age when the application is made, but exemptions may apply.
The employee must also have the required skills and qualifications to perform the tasks of the nominated occupation. A skills assessment may be required as evidence of this. If a license, registration or membership of a professional body is mandatory to be able to work in the relevant occupation in the applicant’s State or Territory, the employee should also provide evidence that this has been obtained.
Similar to many other visas, the Department of Home Affairs requires the main applicant and any dependent family members who apply for the visa to meet specific health and character requirements. The applicants may need to have health examinations to prove they meet the health requirement. To prove that the applicants have good character, the Department may also request documents such as police certificates.
Apart from meeting the health and character requirements, the visa applicant will also need to pay any debts to the Australian Government if funds are owed. All applicants who are 18 years or older must also read and sign the Australian Values Statement. Applicants who have had a visa cancelled or refused may be ineligible for this visa – you should seek professional advice if this reflects your circumstances.
The visa applicant can include their spouse and/or dependent children, who are not engaged, married or in a de facto relationship in the application (although age limits apply). This can be done at the time the visa is lodged or before the visa decision is made by the Department of Home Affairs.
The main visa applicants and any family included in the application can apply for the 187 Visa from either inside or outside Australia. They can also be in or outside Australia at the time the visa application is decided.
Once the visa is granted, it allows the visa holder to stay in Australia indefinitely as this is a permanent visa. Therefore, they can live, work and study in Australia, enrol in Australia’s public healthcare scheme, Medicare, sponsor eligible relatives to come to Australia, and apply for Australian citizenship if eligible. They can also travel to and from Australia as many times as they like for 5 years from the date the visa is granted and apply for a Resident Return Visa after 5 years if they want to travel after the initial 5-year travel provision. International travel restrictions due to the pandemic may apply.
Other things to note are that the primary visa holder must work for their nominating employer in regional Australia for at least 2 years. The employment must begin within 6 months of the visa grant date if the visa holder was in Australia on the date the visa was granted. Alternatively, they must start employment from the date the187 visa holder entered Australia if the visa was granted outside Australia. If this obligation is not met, the visa may be cancelled.
Our migration agents would be happy to assess your employee’s eligibility for Permanent Residence through the 187 Visa. We begin by reviewing a copy of your candidate’s resume including their skills, experience, and qualifications and then advise on the options available and the requirements for applying. During a consultation, our migration agent will also provide advice on any visa conditions that you may need to be aware of so that you can make a more informed decision. After the consultation, you can choose to engage our services to manage your sponsorship, nomination and visa applications and receive ongoing advice on how to prepare the evidence requirements.
If you would like to understand your business’ options to retain staff through Permanent Residence pathways, we encourage you to get in touch with Interstaff’s registered migration agents servicing Perth, Melbourne and Sydney by calling us on 1800 449 858 or +61 8 9221 3388.
“I want to say thank you to the Interstaff team for assisting us through the 186 Visa process – especially when we had questions and your team were quick to answer them. I would recommend Interstaff to anyone in need of a migration agent. I’d give them 10/10. Once again, thank you to your team for an excellent job.”
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