There have been some important changes to the Subclass 457 visa program as outlined below:
The Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold (TSMIT):
The TSMIT was introduced in September 2009 as a benchmark for employers to ensure that workers have enough money to be support themselves while they are in Australia. The TSMIT is indexed annually and as at 1 July 2012 the TSMIT is set at $51,400.
Employers wishing to sponsor an overseas employee under the 457 visa program must demonstrate that the market salary rate for the nominated position is greater than the TSMIT. If the market rate for the position does not meet/exceed the TSMIT, the employer will not be able to access the 457 visa program. If the market rate for the position is below TSMIT, the employer cannot increase the overseas workers salary as it the market rate not the TSMIT which determines eligibly for the 457 visa program.
Consolidate Skilled Occupation List (CSOL)
As of 1 July 2012, eligible 457 visa occupations are listed in the Consolidated Sponsored Occupations List. The list now includes eligible occupations for the Subclass 442 Occupational Trainee, Employer Nomination Scheme and the General Skilled Migration Program. Occupations from Schedule 1 and Schedule 2 of the CSOL are eligible for nomination under the 457 visa program.