The 2018 Federal Budget handed down recently has revealed that employers will be able to access additional refund provisions for the Skilling Australians Fund (SAF) Levy.
Businesses who sponsor visa holders will be able to apply for a refund of the SAF Levy fee under the following circumstances:
- If the employer’s nomination is approved but the employee’s subsequent visa application is refused based on health or character grounds
- If the visa application is approved but the visa holder does not commence work with the employer
- If a Subclass 482 Visa holder leaves their employer within the first 12 months of employment where the agreed visa period was for more than 12 months (the refund available in this case will be for the unused full years of the levy)
Employers will shortly be required to pay SAF Levy fees at the time of submitting a nomination application to sponsor a person, therefore the expanded refund provisions offer reassuring news that employers’ investments in the SAF Levy will be protected.
We are happy to see employers will be financially compensated if a sponsored employee chooses to leave before their agreed period in some circumstances, particularly as payments towards the SAF Levy will be required by employers for each year they choose to sponsor a person under the Subclass 482 Visa.
Businesses will also be able to access a SAF Levy refund if their employee’s visa application is refused based on health or character grounds. This is encouraging news as visa applicants need to meet more rigorous character requirements, such as mandatory police checks for subclass 482/TSS visas, which may make visa refusals based on character grounds more likely. We encourage businesses to view our fact sheet on the mandatory character requirements which need to be met by sponsored visa applicants.
Employers will be able to access the above refund provisions in addition to existing refund provisions available when an employer’s nomination application is refused.
Support throughout the changes | Visa Tools
Further information about the SAF Levy is available in our visa tools, which we have developed to assist you or your business with the recent changes to employer-sponsored visas. You can view these here.
Interstaff will keep you updated on the implementation date of the SAF Levy and further developments as they arise.