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Subclasses 190 & 491 Nominations

A small number of places have been allocated to the States and Territories for Subclasses 190 and 491 nominations and the Business Innovation and Investment classes up until the Federal Budget on 6 October 2020.

The Department has provided the MIA with the specific number of interim allocated places for each State and Territory for subclasses 190, 491 and the Business Innovation and Investment program, please see below.

Visit our Immigration Law Services page for my information about how we can help you or your family migrate and stay in Australia.

State & Territorysc 190sc 491 & 489BIIP

Further Inbound Travel Exemptions

Further inbound travel exemptions were announced on the Australian Department of Home Affair’s COVID mini site has been updated today to allow additional categories of persons to be automatically exempt from travel restrictions and can enter Australia, without obtaining an individual exemption.

Those exempt from requiring individual exemptions are:

  • an Australian citizen
  • a permanent resident of Australia
  • an immediate family member of an Australian citizen or permanent resident*
  • a New Zealand citizen usually resident in Australia and their immediate family members
  • a diplomat accredited to Australia (holding a subclass 995 visa)
  • a traveller transiting Australia for 72 hours or less
  • airline crew
  • maritime crew including marine pilots
  • recruited under the Government approved Seasonal Worker Program or Pacific Labour Scheme
  • holder of a Business Innovation and Investment (subclass 188) visa

Further information on the requirements for these exemptions is available on the Department’s site. Contact our team for all of your Immigration Law concerns. We’re standing by to help you!

New Priority Skills List and Testing Requirements

On 2 September 2020, the Acting Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs, the Hon Alan Tudge MP, and the Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash, announced the introduction of a new priority skills list and strengthened labour market testing requirements. 

Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List

The occupations included on the Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List (PMSOL) were identified based on advice from the National Skills Commission, and in consultation with other relevant Commonwealth agencies, and will be reviewed regularly.

Existing skilled migration occupation lists will remain active and applications will still be processed, but priority will be given to those relating to occupations on the PMSOL.  Prioritisation of applications relating to PMSOL occupations will only apply to employer sponsored visa programs.

The PMSOL is published on the Department’s website here and you can find it on our post: Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List (PMSOL).

Ministerial Directions pursuant to section 499 of the Migration Act 1958

To prioritise processing occupations on the PMSOL, Ministerial Directions 87 and 88 have been effected and can be found here.

Enhanced labour market testing

Current labour market testing (LMT) requirements have been enhanced to ensure that Australian workers are prioritised for job opportunities in Australia.

The existing instrument LIN 18/036: Period, manner and evidence of labour market testing has been amended to reflect these enhancements. The amending instrument can be found on the Federal Register of Legislation.

As a result of the amendment, businesses that are considering employing overseas skilled workers on a Subclass 457 (Temporary Work (Skilled)) visa, Subclass 482 (Temporary Skill Shortage) visa, or Subclass 494 (Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional)) visa, will be required to advertise their vacancies on the Jobactive website (http://www.jobactive.gov.au) in addition to the two other advertisements that must be published in line with existing requirements.

The enhanced labour market testing requirements apply to nominations lodged on or after 1 October 2020 to ensure that appropriately skilled Australian citizens and permanent residents are given work opportunities before overseas workers when a business nominates a vacancy.

The amendment will not affect nominations lodged prior to 1 October 2020, or nominations for a select occupation or a select position to which alternative evidence arrangements apply.

Registered migration agents are asked to advise their clients of the new requirements as a matter of urgency to allow advertisements for upcoming positions to be placed on Jobactive, with applications for the positions able to be accepted for at least four weeks as per existing LMT requirements. 

Nominations lodged on or after 1 October 2020 without evidence of a Jobactive advertisement that satisfies all existing LMT requirements, such as those in relation to position details and duration, cannot be approved.  There are no provisions in regulation 2.73AA or 2.73C that allow for refunds of the nomination fee or Skilling Australians Fund (SAF) levy where a nomination is refused or withdrawn due to failure to satisfy the LMT requirement.

Given the economic impacts of COVID-19, registered migration agents are also advised that the Australian Government has an expectation that positions will be advertised on Jobactive before seeking to nominate an overseas worker for a permanent employer sponsored visa (subclass 186 or 187), in order to demonstrate that there is a genuine need for an overseas worker to fill that position. 

In addition, to ensure that job opportunities for Australian workers are being prioritised, the Department will be further scrutinising ENS and RSMS nominations in relation to Australian workers employed by the business in similar occupations, including:

  • recruitment of temporary visa holders beyond the ordinary scope of the business.
  • retrenchments in the previous 12 months
  • reduction of hours worked during the previous 12 months
  • reduction in pay and conditions within the previous 12 months
  • employment of a temporary visa holder on conditions less favourable than Australians

Further information can be found on the Department’s website. If you are an overseas worker looking to migrate to Australia contact our team. We have helped hundreds of people with our 40 years of experience and immigration law services.

The relevant procedural instructions will be updated to reflect the new arrangements in due course.

Travel exemptions

For offshore visa applicants, Australia’s international border restrictions remain in place (currently only Australian citizens, permanent residents and their immediate families are permitted to enter unless an exemption is granted).

Temporary skilled visa applicants or current visa holders, who are working in a PMSOL occupation, will be eligible to request an exemption from Australia’s travel restrictions online at: https://travel-exemptions.homeaffairs.gov.au/tep.

Individuals do not need to hold a current visa to lodge a travel exemption request.

To apply for a travel exemption, applicants need to apply via the Department’s website and must include:

  • traveller details: name, date of birth, visa type and number, passport number
  • proposed residential address and phone number in Australia
  • your reasons for coming: why you should be granted an exemption
  • a supporting statement: setting out how you meet one of the grounds for an exemption
  • accompanying evidence.

If an applicant has lodged a visa application, evidence provided as part of the visa application can be used for the travel exemption request. 

On arrival, a mandatory 14-day quarantine period is required to be undertaken at designated facilities in the port of arrival. 

Please refer to the Department of Home Affairs’ covid19 webpages for current international traveller arrangements: https://covid19.homeaffairs.gov.au/coming-australia

Jobactive Labour Market Testing

Businesses considering nominating overseas skilled workers on Subclass 457 Temporary Work, Subclass 482 Temporary Skill Shortage or Subclass 494 Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) visas, will be required to advertise these vacancies on the Jobactive Labour Market Testing website. This measure ensures that appropriately skilled Australian citizens and permanent residents are given work opportunities before overseas workers when a business nominates a vacancy.

The new requirements for advertising may be summarised as follows:

  • must be advertised on the Jobactive website, AND
  • must be advertised with at least two advertisements in one or more of the mediums, already specified in LIN 18/036,Item 8(3).
  • applies to ALL nominated occupations, not just those in the newly announced Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List (PMSOL)
  • applies to nominations made after 30 September 2020.

The new amending provision in LIN 20/156 applies to nominations made after 28 days from the commencement of the instrument. For clarification, the 28 day period begins on the day LIN 20/156 commences.

The instrument LIN 18/036 as in force immediately before the commencement of LIN 20/156, continues to apply to nominations made on or before the commencement of the 28 day period.

Legislative Instrument – F2020L01123 – LIN 20/156: Jobactive – Period, manner and evidence of labour market testing Amendment Instrument 2020.

This Instrument amends LIN 18/036 to include an additional requirement for the manner in which labour market testing is undertaken.

LIN 20/156 requires ALL nominated positions to be advertised on the Government’s Jobactive website. The Government’s Jobactive website is a free online jobs website that is accessible via the internet.

This amendment to the Instrument commences on 3 September 2020.

If you are an overseas worker looking to migrate to Australia contact our team. We have helped hundreds of people with our 40 years of experience and immigration law services.

Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List (PMSOL) Announced

Acting Minister for Immigration Alan Tudge has announced a new Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List (PMSOL) of 17 occupations that will be able to enter Australia to assist in the country’s COVID recovery.

The Acting Minister stated in his joint media release with Senator Michaelia Cash that …“These occupations in the health care, construction and IT sectors will supercharge both our health and economic response to COVID-19.

Visa holders, who have been sponsored by an Australia business in a PMSOL occupation can request an exemption from Australia’s travel restrictions, but will be subject to a strict 14 days quarantine on arrival at their own expense.”

Labour market testing will still be required to be able to sponsor application in these priority migration skilled occupations.

The 17 occupations (ANZSCO code) are:

• Chief Executive or Managing Director (111111)
• Construction Project Manager (133111)
• Mechanical Engineer (233512)
• General Practitioner (253111)
• Resident Medical Officer (253112)
• Psychiatrist (253411)
• Medical Practitioner nec (253999)
• Midwife (254111)
• Registered Nurse (Aged Care) (254412)
• Registered Nurse (Critical Care and Emergency) (254415)
• Registered Nurse (Medical) (254418)
• Registered Nurse (Mental Health) (254422)
• Registered Nurse (Perioperative) (254423)
• Registered Nurses nec (254499)
• Developer Programmer (261312)
• Software Engineer (261313)
• Maintenance Planner (312911)

If you are an overseas worker looking to migrate to Australia contact our team. We have helped hundreds of people with our 40 years of experience and immigration law services.