TSS 482 Visa (Temporary Skill Shortage Visa)

TSS visa enables employers to address labour shortages by hiring skilled workers where they cannot find an appropriately skilled Australian. It facilitates employment of foreign workers to address temporary skill shortages, while ensuring that Australian workers get priority. TSS visa holders can work in Australia in their nominated occupation and may have a pathway to permanent residency.

From 18 March 2018, the 457 visa was abolished and replaced with the TSS visa (Subclass 482). The TSS 482 visa is comprised of a Short-Term streamMedium-Term stream and Labour agreement stream.

A business can sponsor someone for this visa if they cannot find an Australian citizen or permanent resident to do the skilled work. The business must be a Standard Business Sponsor (SBS) or an Overseas Business Sponsor (OBS) to sponsor you under the TSS visa.

You can be in or outside Australia​ when you lodge your application (or hold a BVA, BVB, BVC).

The TSS 482 visa involves a three-step process:

Step 1: a sponsorship application by the employer (the employer needs to be a lawfull, active, operating business and meet local labour and employment practices).

Step 2: The second part of the application process is the nomination application. This is regarding the position to be filled, salary details, efforts to hire Australian workers and the ‘genuineness’ of the position. The business must also be viable to sponsor from overseas.

Step 3: a visa application by the nominated employee. The visa applicant must demonstrate that they meet the skills required for their occupation as well as health and character requirements.

Medium TSS Visa vs Short TSS Visa

Medium and Long Term TSS Visa (482)
Short-Term TSS Visa (482)
 TSS Visa -Regional (ROL)

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3 Streams

There are three streams available under the TSS 482 visa:

  • Short-term stream – this is for employers to source genuine temporary overseas skilled workers in occupations included on the Short-term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL) for a maximum of two years each time (or up to four years if an international trade obligation applies)
  • Medium-term stream – this is for employers to source highly skilled overseas workers to fill medium-term critical skills in occupations included on the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) or the Regional Occupations List (ROL) for up to four years (each time), with eligibility to apply for permanent residence after three years
  • Labour Agreement stream – this is for employers to source overseas skilled workers in accordance with a labour agreement with the Commonwealth, on the basis of a demonstrated need that cannot be met in the Australian labour market and standard visa programs are not available, with the capacity to negotiate a permanent residence option.

At the time of lodging a TSS nomination application, employers will need to select an employment period of up to:

  • 1 year or 2 years for the short-term stream (unless an international trade obligation applies-up to 4 years); and
  • 1 year, 2 years, 3 years or 4 years for the medium-term or labour agreements stream.

TSS 482 Visa SAF Levy (Employer)

Employers sponsoring workers for a TSS 482 visa must pay a training contribution charge (known as the Skilling Australians Fund levy):

Businesses with turnover of less than $10 million per year will be required to make)
  • an upfront annual payment for each employee on a TSS 482 visa of $1,200
Businesses with turnover of $10 million or more per year will be required to make:
  • an upfront annual payment for each employee on a TSS 482 visa of $1,800

Labour Market Testing (LMT) for TSS

Employers must advertise the role on 2 national reaching mediums before offering the position to the overseas applicant (unless an international trade obligation applies). This is to ensure that employers try to find a suitably qualified Australians before they can seek to employ an overseas skilled worker on a TSS 482 visa.

Salary level for TSS

Sponsors seeking to employ an overseas worker will need to demonstrate that they are going to pay the market salary rate to ensure that overseas workers are protected and the local labour market is not undercut. In any case it must be above the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold (TSMIT). This threshold is set by the Department of Home Affairs each year and is currently $53,900 plus superannuation.

Caveats

Some occupations are subject to caveats that set a minimum remuneration level that is above TSMIT.  For example the occupation of “Marketing Specialist” or “Conference and Event Managers” excludes positions which have nominated annual earnings of less than AUD65,000 or for example the occupation of “Corporate Services Manager” will require the business to have turned over at least AUD 1 Million in the 12 months prior to the nomination application.

Work experience requirements for the TSS 482 visa (Employee)

TSS visa applicants are required to have worked in the nominated occupation, or a related field, for at least two years to be eligible for a TSS visa. This means if you have recently graduated with a relevant Bachelor degree from an Australian university you would generally not qualify for the TSS visa unless you have completed another qualification overseas and have 2 years of experience after that qualification. TSS visa applicants must also meet the ANZSCO Skill Level requirement of your occupation

What is condition 8607?

Condition 8607 applies to all primary TSS visa holders. It is similar to condition 8107, which was applied to subclass 457 visa holders. Condition 8607 requires TSS visa holders who wish to change occupation (as opposed to employer), to have a new nomination approved and a new visa granted before they start work in a new occupation.

Repeat TSS 482 visas

In general, all applicants for a TSS 482 visa (i.e. primary and secondary) can either be inside or outside Australia. If the application is for a Short-term (ST) stream visa, however, the primary visa applicant must be offshore if all of the below apply:

  • they have held more than one ST stream TSS 482 visa
  • they were in Australia when the application for their most recent TSS 482 visa was made and
  • this requirement would not be inconsistent with any international trade obligation (ITO).

Holders of two ST stream TSS visas in a row (where the second application was made in Australia) can apply for a further visa TSS ST stream visa offshore. They should, however, be aware that their immigration history may be relevant in terms of whether they are considered to have met the Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE) requirement for this visa stream.

Understanding the transition from subclass 457 to TSS

  • Employers who are already approved standard business sponsors for subclass 457 will be able to sponsor skilled overseas workers under the TSS visa program.
  • Secondary visa applicants (of 457 visa holders) are able to lodge a subsequent dependent TSS application and if they meet requirements, will be granted a TSS 482 visa linked to their family’s subclass 457 visa/nomination application. The validity period of the TSS visa will match the expiry date of the subclass 457 primary visa holder. Spouses/partners and children included in the TSS visa application will have unrestricted work and study rights.
  • Subclass 457 visa holders whose visa is not expiring but wish to change employer do not need to apply for a new TSS visa, but need their new employer to lodge a TSS 482 nomination application and link it to your 457 visa. You will need to apply for a new TSS visa before your 457 visa expires to continue working.
  • Subclass 457 visa holders who wish to change occupation or need a new visa (for example: with longer validity), they will, however, need to lodge a new TSS visa application referencing a new TSS nomination application.
  • If you are granted a 457 visa after 18 April 2017 off the MLTSSL list, it can be granted for 4 years. You will be able to be apply for a permanent 186/187 visa after 3 years on a 457 visa if that company decides to nominate you.
  • If you already hold a 457 visa in a STSOL occupation, you can apply for a two year TSS visa and a further two year TSS visa onshore.
  • Can I apply for 186 Transition after applying being on a 2 year TSS 482 Visa: if you are not grandfathered you would need to be on the MLTSSL list and you would need a futher one year TSS visa to be eligible to apply for a permanent 186/187 RSMS visa under that occupation with the same company.
  • I am over 50 years of age, can I still apply for this visa? Yes, there is no age limit for this visa type.
Some consequences of this:
  1. Occupations such as cook and restaurant manager are on the STSOL list. While you can still be sponsored for 2 years by a restaurant on the 457 visa and gain another 2 year extension, you can no longer apply for a permanent visa unless it is added to the MLTSSL list or being in a designated regional area and on the TSS ROL list.
  2. Retail manager is still available in regional areas for the 187 visa at the moment but it is not on the 482 visa Medium to Long Term list.
  3. Most student graduates will not be eligible for temporary or permanent company sponsorship as they require at least 2 years full-time work experience. Structured, formal training and work experience on a Student visa may count towards the 2 year work experience requirement.

Book a meeting today for a commitment free briefing with our Registered Migration Agents in Melbourne to find more about your visa options.