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25 Feb 2016

What is the Temporary work 457 Visa?

The 457 visa is the most commonly used visa with respect to Australian employers or overseas employers sponsoring skilled people to work in Australia on a temporary basis. There are two main options with the 457 visa, which are:

  • Business Sponsorship
  • Self-Sponsorship

This visa was introduced in 1996 after John Howard became Prime Minister and it was initially known as the Temporary Business (Long Stay) visa but this was changed in November of 2012, when the title was altered to the Temporary Work (Skilled) (Subclass 457) visa.

How long does the visa last for?

Anyone in possession of this visa can be employed for up to four years and the holder is eligible to bring family members and partners into the country. All eligible people will be granted unrestricted study and work rights in Australia. Anyone in possession of this visa is able to travel in and out of Australia without limit.

Any employer wishing to provide this visa for an employee must be ratified by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection. Visa holders are only allowed to work for their sponsored employer and they are not able to work, even in a voluntary capacity, for any other organisation. There is leeway provided to companies that are classed as associated entities under the Corporations Act. Anyone looking to change jobs during their stay must ensure that their next employer is classed as a 457 sponsor and that they lodge a 457 nomination in order to employ the individual. If this nomination is approved, the obligations move from the former employer to the new employer and then the same restrictions are placed on the relationship between the worker and the new visa. As long as the visa is still valid, there is no requirement to apply for a new visa.

What requirements are involved with the 457 visa?

It is accepted that all employees must meet health requirements, character requirements, hold a minimum level of skill and English language abilities. A skills assessment test may be required for people looking for work in a specific occupation and for people who hold passports from certain countries.

Many 457 visa holders apply for permanent residency in Australia during their temporary stay in the hope of being granted Australian citizenship and being allowed to settle in the country.

What are the visa processing times?

With respect to the 457 visa, people who lodge an application, whether inside or outside Australia, and who are deemed to be low-risk will find that the processing time is 2 months. For people who lodge an application, whether inside or outside of Australia, who are deemed to be high-risk will find that the processing time is 3 months. This is the same timescale for 401, 403, 405, 410, 416, 418, 420 and 422 visa.

The term low-risk is applicable to people who hail from countries which offer ETA eligible passports while people deemed to be high-risk hail from nations that are not ETA eligible.

For more information on 457 visas and sponsorship opportunities, feel free to drop us an email or give us a call. Our migration agents are always ready to assist and answer any queries you might have.


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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