New Temporary Activity Visa Framework
The Australian Government will introduce changes to Australia’s temporary activity visa framework commencing 19 November 2016.
The proposed changes will include the creation of a new consolidated sponsor visa class, the removal of some of the sponsorship and nomination application requirements, the repeal and consolidation of a number of other visa subclasses, and the ability to lodge applications online where this option does not currently exist.
The diagram below by the Migration Institute of Australia provides an overview of how the current visas are incorporated within the proposed new temporary activity visa framework.
New Visa Subclasses
In summary, there would be four visa subclasses:
- Temporary Work (Short Stay Specialist) (subclass 400) visa;
- Temporary Work (International Relations) (subclass 403) visa;
- Training (subclass 407) visa; and
- Temporary Activity (subclass 408) visa.
These four visas would come into effect following the:
- repeal of five visas – Temporary Work (Long Stay Activity) (subclass 401); Training and Research (subclass 402); Special Program (subclass 416); Temporary Work (Entertainment) (subclass 420) and Superyacht Crew (subclass 488);
- restructuring of two existing visas – Temporary Work (Short Stay Activity) (subclass 400) and Temporary Work (International Relations) (subclass 403); and
- creation of two new visas – Temporary Activity (subclass 408) and Training (subclass 407).
Consolidated Temporary Activities Sponsor Class
Currently, there are six sponsor classes for each type of visa (Long Stay Activity, Training and Research, Professional Development, Entertainment, Special Program and Superyacht Crew). The sponsorship framework will be simplified and replaced by a single Temporary Activities sponsor class.
Under the new framework, Training (subclass 407) visa applicants will need to be sponsored and nominated by a Temporary Activities Sponsor. Temporary Activity (subclass 408) visa applicants will not require nomination, and will only need to be sponsored by a Temporary Activities Sponsor where:
- the applicant is applying from outside of Australia and intend to stay in Australia for more than three months or;
- the applicant is applying from within Australia.
Timing of Changes
The proposed changes will commence on 19 November 2016, subject to approval by Australia’s Governor-General. Legislation incorporating these reforms to Australia’s existing temporary activity is expected to be released in the coming months.
Transitional arrangements will be available up until 19 May 2017, so that approved sponsors who have received sponsorship approval prior to 19 November 2016 as a long stay activity, training and research, professional development, entertainment, special program or superyacht crew sponsor can utilise this sponsorship approval to sponsor an applicant for the new Training (subclass 407) or Temporary activity (subclass 408) visa.
From 19 May 2017, businesses will need to obtain Temporary Activities Sponsorship approval if they wish to sponsor a Training (subclass 407) or Temporary Activity (subclass 408) visa applicants. Transitional arrangements for a period of six months will be applicable to those sponsors approved prior to 19 November 2016 under the existing long stay activity, training and research, professional development, entertainment, special program and superyacht crew classes.
Additional information on the changes, including transitional arrangements, can be found on the Department’s website at http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Work/temporary-activity-visa-changes.
To understand how these changes will affect your business, please contact our migration team on firstname.lastname@example.org