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Australia Updates Visa Conditions - New Flexibility for Temporary Migrants from July 2024

Australia Updates Visa Conditions: New Flexibility for Temporary Migrants from July 2024

Starting 1 July 2024, Australia is updating visa conditions 8107, 8607, and 8608 as part of its Migration Strategy. These changes aim to combat worker exploitation and boost productivity, reflecting the government’s commitment to fairer labour practices.

Current Conditions

Condition 8107: Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 457)

  • Work for Sponsor Only: Visa holders must work only in the occupation for which they were nominated and only for the sponsoring employer.
  • Cease Work Consequences: If the visa holder ceases work, they have 60 days to find a new sponsor, apply for a different visa, or depart Australia. Failure to comply may result in visa cancellation.

Condition 8607: Temporary Skill Shortage visa (subclass 482)

  • Occupation and Employer Restriction: Visa holders must work in the occupation specified in their visa grant and for the employer who sponsored them.
  • Licence or Registration Requirement: If the occupation requires a licence or registration, the visa holder must hold that licence or registration.
  • Cease Work Consequences: If the visa holder ceases employment, they have 60 days to find a new sponsor, apply for a different visa, or leave Australia.

Condition 8608: Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (provisional) visa (subclass 494)

  • Occupation and Employer Restriction: Visa holders must work in the occupation for which their visa was granted and for the sponsoring employer.
  • Regional Requirement: They must live, work, and study only in a designated regional area of Australia.
  • Cease Work Consequences: If the visa holder stops working for their sponsor, they have 90 days to find a new sponsor, apply for a different visa, or leave Australia.

New Changes

Under the new rules, if these visa holders stop working with their sponsoring employer, they will now have more time to find a new sponsor, apply for a different visa, or arrange to leave Australia. Specifically, they will have:

  • Up to 180 days at a time
  • A maximum of 365 days in total during the visa period

During this period, visa holders can work for other employers, even in occupations not listed in their most recent sponsorship nomination, allowing them to support themselves while they search for a new sponsor.

However, unless exempt, they cannot work for another employer unless they have ceased work with their sponsoring employer. They must also remain in their nominated occupation while working for their existing sponsor.

Sponsors must notify the department of any changes, such as stopping sponsorship or a visa holder resigning, within 28 days. For more details, visit the Sponsorship Obligations for Standard business sponsors page.

Visa holders must not engage in work that conflicts with any required licences or registrations for their nominated occupation.

These changes apply to both current visa holders and those granted visas on or after 1 July 2024. Any period a visa holder was not working for their sponsor before this date will not count towards the new time periods.

For more information, check out the visa details and conditions.


Our Reflections on These Changes

Reflecting on this, we see these changes could be game-changers for many migrants. The pressure of securing new employment within a short timeframe was immense in the past. Imagine uprooting your life to move across the world, only to find yourself on a countdown the moment you lose your job. The constant stress of potentially leaving the country because you couldn’t find a new sponsor in a matter of weeks is a scenario too many have faced.

These new rules offer a much-needed buffer by extending the period to 180 days, with a maximum of 365 days in total. This means migrants have a fair chance to find a job that matches their skills and aspirations without the looming fear of deportation. It also allows them to take on different types of work to support themselves during this transition, which can be crucial for financial stability.

These changes recognise the contributions migrants make and offer them the dignity and security they deserve. It’s a step towards acknowledging that migrants are not just temporary workers but integral parts of our communities who deserve the same considerations as everyone else. It’s heartening to see policies evolving in a way that supports human potential and resilience.

We’d love to hear your thoughts!

We’d love to hear your thoughts on these new visa changes. How do you think they will impact temporary migrants in Australia? Share your opinions and experiences in the comments below and join the conversation!

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