Effective 1 July 2016 the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) will implement changes to the subclass 457 visa Accredited Sponsorship criteria.
Subclass 457 visa sponsors with a long history of good dealings with DIBP are eligible to apply to become Accredited Sponsors. The benefits to acquiring accredited status include longer periods of sponsorship approval (six years) and all nomination and visa applications receiving priority processing.
What are the main changes?
Changes to the qualifying criteria for Accredited Sponsorship include the following:
Companies with current sponsorship approval that meet the new requirements will be eligible to lodge a sponsorship variation application seeking to be considered for sponsorship accreditation from 1 July 2016.
Companies that have already obtained accreditation will be eligible to apply for an upgrade to their sponsorship accreditation from 1 July 2016.
What are the additional benefits?
Nomination applications lodged by sponsors that are approved for accredited status after 1 July 2016 will be prioritised and further streamlined processing given to applications where the base salary of the nominee is equal to or higher than: 1. the Fair Work High Income Threshold ($136,700 at 1 July 2015) and the occupation is classified at ANZSCO Skill Level 1 or 2; or 2. $75,000 and the occupation is classified as ANZSCO Skill Level 1 or 2, with the exception of the following occupations: