4 Aug 2017

Business Sponsors | “Acceptable expenditure” for training benchmarks

There were a number of significant changes to Australia’s skilled visas that took place from 1 July 2017, including changes to the training benchmarks businesses need to undertake if they choose to sponsor visa holders for a subclass 457 visa or 186 TRT. Here’s what businesses and skilled visa holders need to know about the new training benchmarks, which have now been updated in migration legislation.

Training benchmark legislation

The Immigration Department’s recently updated migration legislation to reflect the new training benchmark requirements for nominations and sponsorship applications from 1 July 2017.

To demonstrate a business’ commitment to supporting national training and development, business sponsors are required to meet either Training Benchmark A or B. The new legislative instruments provide greater clarity on what the Immigration Department considers to be “acceptable expenditure” towards a company’s Training Benchmark requirements.

According to the new legislation, training funds that may be used to meet the requirement of Training Benchmark A are:

– an industry training fund: that is, a statutory authority responsible for providing funding for the training of eligible workers in particular industries;

– a fund managed by a recognised industry body that provides industry training opportunities and quarantines contributions to the fund for training purposes only; or

– a recognised scholarship fund operated by an Australian university or TAFE college.

Alternatively, acceptable expenditure for Training Benchmark B includes:

– Payments for Australian employees to undertake a formal course of study, including any reasonable and necessary associated costs;

– Payments to RTOs to deliver face-to-face training to Australian employees that will contribute to an Australian Qualifications Framework qualification;

– The purchase of a standalone training software;

– Payments to cover the salary of Australian employees: engaged by the business as apprentices or trainees under a formal training contract, or who have completed an undergraduate or higher degree in a university within the last 2 years, and are participating in a formal, structured graduate program for up to 2 years, or completing a professional year following their graduation;

– The salary of a person whose sole role is to provide training to Australian employees;

– Expenditure to attend conferences for continuing professional development.

While these training benchmarks are currently in effect for businesses sponsoring visa holders on a 457 visa or 186 TRT visa, the Immigration Department has confirmed they will be abolished from March 2018 once the new Skilling Australians Fund is introduced.

Immigracious advises business sponsors on how they can remain compliant with migration law, and also guides visa holders on their requirements and conditions as a visa holder. Contact Sheila or Elain for a complimentary visa assessment or a discussion about how we can assist with your business migration needs. Simply email or call 08 6263 4406.

View out about the recent 457 visa changes here.

Source: The Department of Immigration and Border Protection

Immigracious’ Registered Migration Agents
MARN: 0533879

Sheila Woods

Posted by: Sheila Woods

A very experienced migration agent, Sheila has always been fascinated by this field. Her university degree thesis was on Australia’s post-war immigration history (and it earned her first-class honours).

Filed in: Visas


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