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AUSTRALIA - Changes to Salary Threshold for 457 Temporary Skilled Workers

From 1 July 2011, Australia’s required minimum salary threshold (TSMIT) for 457 temporary skilled worker visa nomination applications will increase by 3.9%, from $47,480AUD to $49,330AUD/annum. Additionally, for occupations which require the applicant to take an English language (IELTS) test, the minimum salary required to qualify for exemption from the test will also increase by 3.9%, from $85,090AUD to $88.410AUD per annum.

What is the TSMIT?

The TSMIT is the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold. It is the minimum salary level which an employee must be paid in order for a Subclass 457 (temporary skilled worker) nomination to be accepted by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship in Australia. However, note that since September 2009, all 457 applicants must be paid market salary rates for the position to be filled, meaning that a 457 applicant filling a position for which the market salary rate is higher than the TSMIT of $49,330AUD/annum will need to be paid more than the TSMIT. For more information, refer to the Department of Immigration and Citizenship’s website here.

English Language Requirements

All non-exempt primary Subclass 457 visa applicants who are sponsored by a Standard Business Sponsor must demonstrate that they have English language proficiency that is equivalent to an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) test score of at least 5 in each of the four test components of speaking, reading, writing and listening. More information can be found here. Exemptions from this requirement are granted based on country of citizenship, nominated occupation, salary level and/or educational level of the applicant. The salary exemption is granted for applicants who have guaranteed earnings over a certain limit. From 1 July 2011, this limit is raised to $88,410AUD/annum.

How Is Salary Calculated?

The salary levels noted above should be guaranteed earnings – i.e. cannot include superannuation or bonuses.

What About Nominations Pending Approval?

For a nomination to be approved, it must meet current criteria. Therefore, any nominations currently pending approval should meet the new TSMIT levels as stated above.

Action Items

  • Note new TSMIT levels effective 1 July 2011, which apply to all 457 nomination application, including those pending approval
  • Note that the salary threshold for English language test (IELTS) exemption has also been raised, from 1 July 2011.

This news alert was prepared using information provided by Visa Executive.

DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this immigration alert has been abridged from laws, court decisions, and administrative rulings and should not be construed or relied upon as legal advice. If you have specific questions regarding the applicability of this information, please contact Peregrine © 2017 Peregrine Immigration Management Ltd.