Employer Sponsored / 482, DAMA News

Employer Sponsors of 482 and 494 Visas: Changes to Conditions 8607 and 8608

Construction worker 1

As part of the Australian Government's Migration Strategy released in December 2023, there are significant changes to the 482 visa condition 8607 and the 494 visa condition 8608 from 1 July 2024. These changes are aimed at reducing the exploitation of immigrants in Australia and providing more flexibility for visa holders.

Summary of Changes:

  • Extended Period to Find a New Sponsor: Employer-sponsored visa holders will have 180 days to find a new sponsor if they quit or are fired (currently, it is only 60 days).
  • Maximum Total Period: A maximum of 365 days in total across the entire visa grant period.
  • Flexibility in Employment: During this period, visa holders are allowed to work for different employers, including in occupations not listed in their most recently approved sponsorship nomination. This flexibility ensures that visa holders can support themselves financially while searching for a new sponsor.


  • Notification Requirement: Sponsors must notify the Department if a visa holder ceases work within 28 days, whether the visa holder resigns or their employment is terminated.
  • Employment Restrictions: Unless exempt, visa holders cannot work for another employer unless they have ceased work with their sponsoring employer.
  • Nominated Occupation: Visa holders must remain in their nominated occupation while working for their existing sponsor.
  • Licensing and Registration: Visa holders must not do any work inconsistent with any licence or registration needed for their nominated occupation.

Affected Individuals:

The changes apply to existing 457, 482 and 494 visa holders as well as those granted a visa on or after 1 July 2024.

Pathway to Permanent Residency:

The 186 Temporary Residence Transition (TRT) stream has not been changed at this point, so most 482 visa holders are still required to work 2 years for their same sponsoring employer before they can be sponsored for the 186 TRT stream.

The government may change this later in the year, when they bring in the Skills in Demand visa, so that “Periods of employment with any approved employer will count towards permanent residence requirements.” (The Migration Strategy, page 48).

Reform of Skilling Australia Fund Needed:

The Migration Strategy report raised the possibility of changes to the Skilling Australia Fund (SAF). Currently, the SAF requires a large upfront payment for the original nomination for a temporary work visa:

  • For 482 visas: $1,200 per year for businesses with a turnover up to $10 million and $1,800 per year for businesses with a turnover over $10 million.
  • For 494 visas: $3,000 flat fee for businesses with a turnover up to $10 million and $5,000 per year for businesses with a turnover over $10 million.

The changes to conditions 8607 and 8608 provide significant flexibility for employees, making it urgent to reform the Skilling Australia Fund to ensure employers are willing to sponsor, even with the risk of employee turnover.

Do you need help with a 482 or a 494 Visa application?

Our team of experienced Immigration Lawyers and Migration Agents is ready to assist you with your visa application.

Based in Adelaide, South Australia, we provide Australian immigration advice to people and businesses from all over the world.

You can book an appointment online or call us at (+61) 8 8351 9956.

If you are looking for an employer to sponsor you, check out our blog "How to Find an Employer Sponsor in Australia."




Book an Appointment


Continue reading

How to appeal visa refusals 

We understand that having a visa refusal can be disappointing and you can feel quite stressed and unsure of what to do. 

In this blog, we explain the appeal process and what you can do if your visa has been refused by the Department of Home Affairs.

Generally, you have the option to appeal the decision through a merits review or judicial review. The process for appealing a visa refusal can vary depending on the type of visa you applied for, and the specific circumstances of your case.


Merits Review

Basically, merits review is a process that allows a decision maker to ‘step into the shoes’ of the original decision maker for example the delegate at the Department and make a fresh decision based on the evidence before it. In Australia, this is usually undertaken by a body known as the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (or the AAT). 

Appealing the decision at the AAT

The refusal letter will state whether you can appeal the decision at the AAT. If you have this option, you must make sure to lodge your appeal within the time frame that is provided in your refusal letter. The easiest way to lodge your appeal is online through the AAT’s website. 

Once you lodge an appeal at the AAT, your bridging visa will continue until you get a decision on your appeal. 

Attending a Hearing 

The AAT will then review your appeal application. Due to a large number of applications, it usually takes a long time before you are invited for a hearing. At the hearing, you can present your case and any evidence to support your appeal. The AAT will then usually make a decision to affirm the Department’s decision to refuse your visa or remit the decision back to the Department for reconsideration.

We would recommend getting legal assistance from an Australian Migration Lawyer to avoid any issues with your appeal and put your best case forward, especially when preparing for your hearing. 

Book an Appointment

Judicial Review

In cases where you don’t have a merits review option, you may be able to appeal the refusal decision in court.

Unlike merits review, judicial review does not involve considering the merits of the case or deciding what the right decision was. Instead, it looks at the process through which a decision was made and determine if it was made in accordance with the law. 

Another thing to keep in mind is that unlike an appeal to the AAT, your bridging visa does not automatically continue when you apply for judicial review. You will need to lodge a bridging visa application before your current visa expires. We’re here to help if you need any assistance with this.

Appealing the decision in court 

To be able to appeal the decision in court, you need to have grounds to seek judicial review for example there was a legal error in the decision-making process, such as a breach of procedural fairness or an incorrect interpretation of the law. You may need to get a Barrister to look at your case and assess if there are any grounds for judicial review. 

Appeals Australia 1

Filing an appeal application 

To begin an appeal at court, you will need to file an application with the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia and within the specified time, which is generally 35 days from the date of the refusal.

After this you will need to follow the court procedures by serving the documents to the other party within the specified time, and then go through the court proceedings by attending a hearing and waiting for the court’s decision. This process can be very long, and it can take several years before you have a hearing. 

It's important that you comply with all the requirements and deadlines for filing a court application and serving the documents as required by the court. 

It can be helpful to get legal advice from a migration lawyer to help you navigate your appeal process because I understand it can be very confusing and there are strict time frames you have to work with. 

Do you need help with your refused visa application?

Our team of experienced Immigration Lawyers and Migration Agents look forward to assisting you with your appeal application. 

If you have a Student Visa refusal, a Partner Visa refusal, a 482 Employer-sponsor Visa refusal, a 407 Training Visa refusal, a Graduate Visa refusal, a 491 Visa refusal, a 190 Visa refusal or any other visa refusal, we can assist you. 

Based in Adelaide, South Australia, we provide Australian immigration advice to people and businesses from all over the world.

You can book an appointment online or call us at (+61) 8 8351 9956.

Book an Appointment

Continue reading

Latest News in Australian Immigration – End of the 2024 Financial Year

As the end of the fiscal year approaches, many changes are being made to the Australian immigration system. Many of these changes stem from the Budget 2024-25.

We have already posted some videos about these changes, which you can find on our YouTube channel.

Today’s news includes an exciting 189 invitation round, restrictions on applying for student visas, skills assessment updates, and a new visa coming soon.

No Student Visas for Those with Tourist/Visitor or Graduate Visas

From 1 July 2024, visitor visa holders and temporary graduate visa holders will not be able to apply for student visas onshore. In the short term, this will lead to many graduate and visitor visa holders lodging applications before 30 June 2024.

Tourist Australia 1

In summary, from 1 July 2024, the following subclasses will not be able to apply for a student visa onshore:

  • Subclass 485 (Temporary Graduate)
  • Subclass 600 (Visitor)
  • Subclass 601 (Electronic Travel Authority)
  • Subclass 602 (Medical Treatment)
  • Subclass 651 (eVisitor)
  • Subclass 988 (Maritime Crew)

This is in addition to the visas already listed which cannot make a valid student visa application, which are:

  • Subclass 403 (Temporary Work) International Relations – Domestic Worker (Diplomatic or Consular) stream
  • Subclass 426 (Domestic Worker (Temporary) – Diplomatic or Consular)
  • Subclass 771 (Transit)
  • Subclass 995 (Diplomatic Temporary) – primary visa holders only

189 Invitation Round Released

A 189 Skilled Independent Visa invitation round has just happened On the 13th of June 2024! It includes invitations for a wide range of occupations with high points, many in the range of 85 to 100 points. The occupations include engineers, accountants, ICT professionals, and construction-related trades, such as carpenters and painters.

Before this round, the last few rounds only included invitations for health and teaching professions, which was discouraging for those in other occupations.

The June 2024 round is encouraging for many, as it opens up opportunities for a wide range of occupations.

State Nomination 190 and 491 Visas Updates

Only New South Wales (NSW) and the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) are still open. The other states are already closed and will reopen in the new financial year.

Increase in the TSMIT

From 1 July 2024, the TSMIT will increase from $70,000 to $73,150.

The TSMIT is the minimum salary that employers are required to pay when they sponsor someone on a 482, 186, or 494 visa.

Any new nominations from this date will need to meet the new TSMIT of $73,150.

This change will not affect existing visa holders and nominations lodged before 1 July 2024.

Good News for People Seeking to Apply for the 482 Employer-Sponsored Visa

From November 2024, applicants will be able to apply for the 482 employer-sponsored visa after 1 year of experience. Currently, the applicant must have 2 years of full-time experience.

With the shortage of invitations in the points-based visas, this change for the employer-sponsored 482 visa will be welcomed by many students and 408 holders looking for their next visa.

We have a blog with some tips on how to find a sponsor. Click here to read.

Graduate Visa Changes

From 1 July, the maximum eligible age to apply for the 485 Graduate Visa will be reduced to 35 years or under at the time of application.

Masters (research) and PhD graduates, as well as Hong Kong and British National Overseas passport holders, will still be eligible if they are under 50 years of age.

Any applications lodged on or after 1 July 2024 will be assessed under the new subclass 485 visa requirements, which include the reduction of the age limit to 35 and under.

If you need to apply for a 485 Graduate Visa, please contact us.

Ministerial Direction

There has been much media commentary in relation to Directions 99 and the decisions of the AAT.

This pertains to visa holders with character issues and some decisions by the AAT to reinstate visas for those with criminal convictions.

A new Direction 110 has been released, emphasizing the protection of the Australian community in visa decisions involving character issues.


The variation of the Orana Designated Area Migration Agreement (DAMA) has been expanded to include an additional 41 local government areas across inland NSW.

This expansion grants a geographical boundary extension to include the RDA regions of Riverina, Murray, Southern Inland, and Central West.

The variation will support the development and growth of regional NSW, expanding to 129 occupations under the Orana DAMA, giving businesses across 53 local government areas in NSW access to a broader range of skilled workers.

Click here to check the ORANA DAMA Occupation List.

Western Australia Subsidy Up to $7,500

The Skilled Migrant Job Connect Subsidy program is now available through the Migration WA Portal to help onshore migrants cover the costs of skills assessments, gap training, and occupational licensing by providing reimbursements of up to $7,500.

This support aims to assist migrants in gaining employment in Western Australia that aligns with their overseas qualifications, skills, and experience, thereby bolstering the state’s skilled workforce.

You can find the requirements here.australian dollar bills 1

End of the Global Talent Visa and the Business Visa

The Australian Government announced that it will close the Global Talent Visa and the Business Innovation and Investment Program (BIIP) in 2024 and replace them with the new National Innovation Visa.

What is the National Innovation Visa?

This new visa aims to attract exceptionally talented migrants to Australia, such as high-performing entrepreneurs, major investors, and global researchers. Streams of the National Innovation Visa could include:

  • High-performing entrepreneurs
  • Major investors
  • Global researchers

Here you can find more information about the National Innovation Visa Australia.

Skills Assessments Updates


VETASSESS reopened new applications for Chefs and Fitters, which they stopped last year.

In May, they also reopened to cooks, diesel motor mechanics, and motor mechanics.

Trades Recognition Australia (TRA) Updates

The requirement for mandatory skills assessment through the Offshore Skills Assessment Program (OSAP) has been removed for certain automotive trades from qualified applicants/countries of passport. Applicants can now have their skills assessed through the Migration Skills Assessment (MSA) program. This change provides a less expensive documentary evidence-only assessment option.

Do You Need Help with an Australian Visa Application?

Our team of experienced Immigration Lawyers and Migration Agents look forward to assisting you with your visa application. Based in Adelaide, South Australia, we provide Australian immigration advice to people and businesses from all over the world. You can book an appointment online or call us at (+61) 8 8351 9956.















Continue reading

5 Visa Options if You Are 36 Years Old or Over and Can’t Qualify for a 485 Graduate Visa

Australian Visas 1

In December 2023, the Australian government announced a new Migration Strategy, introducing significant changes to various visa programs, including the Graduate Visa.

The main change will be the reduction of the maximum eligible age from under 50 to 35 years or under, proposed to be implemented on July 1, 2024.

These reforms are set to impact many people currently studying in Australia, prospective students, and the education sector, as the substantial reduction in age eligibility could make Australia less attractive for those seeking study opportunities and a pathway to permanent residency.

So, if you are 36 years old or over and can’t qualify for a 485 Graduate Visa, here are 5 visa options you may be eligible to apply for:

1. Skilled Nominated Visas (190 or 491)

Use your existing experience and qualifications to get a positive skills assessment and apply for the Skilled Nominated Visas 190 or 491.

Minimum requirements for the Skilled Nominated 190 Visa:

  • Have an occupation on the relevant skilled list
  • Have a positive skills assessment
  • Be invited to apply for this visa
  • Satisfy the points test (65 points or more)
  • Be under 45 years old
  • Have at least competent English

Minimum requirements for the 491 Skilled Work Regional Visa:

  • Be nominated to apply by a state or territory
  • Have an occupation on a relevant skilled occupation list
  • Have a positive skills assessment
  • Be invited to apply
  • Be under 45 years old
  • Satisfy the points test (65 points or more)
  • Have at least competent English

2. Employer-Sponsored Work Visa (Subclass 482)

If you have two years of full-time experience (down to one year from November 2024), find an employer and apply for a 482 Employer-Sponsored Work Visa.

Minimum requirements for the Temporary Skill Shortage 482 Visa:

  • Be nominated for a skilled position by an approved sponsor
  • Have the right skills to do the job
  • Have at least 2 years of relevant work experience as above in your nominated occupation or a related field
  • No age requirement for this visa
  • English requirements: Short-term stream - Overall band score of at least 5.0 with a score of at least 4.5 in each component. Medium-term stream - Overall band score of at least 5.0 with a score of at least 5 in each component

3. Training Visa (Subclass 407)

If you do not have post-qualification experience, then apply for a 407 Training Visa for two years to gain professional development.

Minimum requirements for the 407 Training Visa:

  • Must be sponsored by an eligible employer in Australia
  • Must be nominated to enter a specific training program
  • Must have functional English
  • No age requirement for this visa

4. Partner Visa

If you have an Australian partner.

Minimum requirements for the Partner Visa:

  • Be in a genuine relationship with your spouse or de facto partner who is an Australian citizen, permanent resident, or eligible New Zealand citizen
  • Must be 18 or older

5. Another Australian Student Visa (Subclass 500) 

If you can find a suitable course to undertake.

Minimum requirements for a Student Visa:

  • Be a genuine student
  • Be enrolled in a course of study in Australia
  • Hold Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC)

If you want to know if you are eligible to apply for one of these visas, please book an appointment here. We will be happy to assist you.

Do you need help with an Australian visa application?

Our team of experienced Immigration Lawyers and Migration Agents look forward to assisting you with your visa application.

Based in Adelaide, South Australia, we provide Australian Immigration advice to people and businesses from all over the world.

You can book an appointment online or call us at (+61) 8 8351 9956.

Continue reading

Australian Immigration News – May 2024

As the end of the financial year approaches, many changes are being made to the Australian immigration system. In this article, we will go through some of those changes.

128 New Occupations Added to the SA DAMA

The South Australian regional DAMA and the Adelaide City DAMA have both been extended and expanded.

The SA regional DAMA now includes 128 new occupations across various sectors, including construction, trade, agribusiness, ICT, health, education, and renewable energy.

Some occupations added are registered nurse in child and family health, registered nurse in disability and rehabilitation, winery worker (beneficial for South Australia's Barossa and Clare Valley), sheep farm worker, truck driver, bricklayer, and floor finisher. Truck driver is particularly notable as it was previously a restricted occupation but is now available for the entire state.

Do you want to know more about the new occupations on the SA DAMA? Click here to read the full article.

Student Visa News

Increase in Financial Capacity:

From 10 May 2024, the financial requirement for Student visa applicants will increase from AUD 24,505 to AUD 29,710.

For a spouse or de facto partner of the Student primary applicant, it will increase from AUD 8,574 to AUD 10,394.

For a dependent child, it will increase from AUD 3,670 to AUD 4,449.

The last increase happened in October 2023, and this new increase was not expected for this financial year.

Recent changes to Australian student visa and graduate visa programs signal a significant shift in the landscape of international education and post-study opportunities in the country. Starting from 23 March 2024, these updates include increased English language requirements and the introduction of the genuine student requirement.

TOEFL iBT is now accepted for all Australian visas

TOEFL iBT tests taken from 5 May 2024 are valid for Australian visas and migration purposes. The test must be taken at a secure test center, as the department does not currently accept online English tests.

End of the 476 Visa

As widely expected, the skilled recognized graduate 476 visa will permanently close from 1 July 2024. This is disappointing for many, but it was expected.

Graduate Visa Changes

The main change will be the reduction of the maximum eligible age from under 50 to 35 years and under, proposed to be implemented from 1 July 2024.

Exceptions include Hong Kong and British overseas national passport holders, who will be eligible up to the age of 50.

Other changes for the graduate visa include increasing the minimum English requirement and reducing the validity period for English tests from three years to just one year prior to the application date.

This means applicants may need to check and complete their English tests before applying.

Click here to read more about the Graduate Visa changes.

Skilled Points Review Paper

The Australian Government published a paper discussing potential changes to the points test for the 189, 190, and 491 visas.

The review may alter the available points by removing and reducing factors and adding new ones.

Expected changes include reducing or removing points for regional study and NAATI-approved language.

Points for partners may increase, age points might be allocated on a gradual scale, and English points might also follow a more gradual scale.

New Core Skills Occupation List

Jobs and Skills Australia has opened a consultation about the Core Skills Occupation list.

This list will be for the Core Skills visa, designed to replace the 482 employer-sponsored visa with similar requirements.

The consultation categorizes occupations into three groups:

  1. Confident On List – Occupations that Jobs and Skills Australia is certain should remain on the list.

Occupations such as Registered Nurse, Social Worker, Diesel Motor Mechanic, and IT Network Administrator are on the Confident On List.

  1. Confident Off List – Occupations recommended for removal based on current labor market insights.

Occupations such as Cafe or Restaurant Manager, Cattle Farmer, ICT Project Manager, and Real Estate Representative are on the Confident Off List.

  1. Targeted for Consultation – Occupations that require further input from stakeholders to determine their necessity and priority.

Occupations such as Chef, Cook, Finance Manager, Web Designer, Hairdresser, and Marketing Specialist are on the Targeted for Consultation List.

Will your occupation be on the new Core Skills Occupation List? Full article here.

VETASSESS Skills Assessment

VETASSESS is accepting new applications again for cook, diesel motor mechanic, and motor mechanic.

Some other trade occupations paused in 2023 are not yet accepted by VETASSESS.

State Nominated 190 and 491 Visas

Victoria, Western Australia, Queensland, and the Northern Territory have already closed for expressions of interest. Other states and territories may close soon.

This was a summary of the main news in Australian immigration at the start of May 2024. If you need advice on your specific situation, please book an appointment.

Do you need help with an Australian visa application?

Our team of experienced Immigration Lawyers and Migration Agents look forward to assisting you with your visa application.

Based in Adelaide, South Australia, we provide Australian Immigration advice to people and businesses from all over the world.

You can book an appointment online or call us at (+61) 8 8351 9956.









Continue reading

Sign up to our Migration Newsletter

Work Visa Lawyers works on Kaurna Land
We acknowledge and pay respect to the past, present and future Traditional Custodians and
Elders of this land and this nation, and the continuation of cultural, spiritual and educational
practices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

This site's contents are for general information purposes only
We recommend you seek advice from a Registered Migration Agent and Lawyer
(such as Work Visa Lawyers) in relation to your factual situation and relevant migration laws

Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation

Site by Adelaide Websites