close menu

Get help navigating Australia’s stricter visa rules

by Sam Hopwood | Aug 15, 2017
  • After the latest Australian immigration regulation changes were announced a few months ago, there has been a lot of confusion and speculation as to how one can apply for an Australian visa. Instead of leaving you to wonder, we’ve collected everything you need to know about these changes.

    First off, this is what has changed

    Here is a list of the most important changes to the Australian skilled worker migration programmes:

    • Applicants 45 and above are no longer able to obtain permanent residence as sponsored employees or a general skilled worker. The previous age limit was 50 years of age.
    • The number of occupations available for state sponsored work visas and general skilled migration visas has been reduced by 216 occupations.
    • The consolidated skilled occupations list was renamed to the short-term skills shortages list.
    • The skilled occupations list was renamed to the medium and long-term skills shortages list.
    • Only those in occupations on the long-term skills shortages list can be sponsored for permanent residence by employers.
    • Those on the short-term skills shortages list can only receive a two year work visa, which is renewable for another two.
    • There is now a tougher English language test, involving reading, writing, listening and speaking.

    According to Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, the changes were implemented with the aim of improving “Australian values”. Many have been up in arms since the changes were announced. While it may be tougher it is certainly not impossible.

    Have a specific question about these changes?

    How to get a state sponsorship

    There are two ways to get a state sponsored visa. These options are very much alive and well despite the recent changes to the immigration rules and regulations.

    1. Apply directly to the state

    Despite the reduction of occupations available for those seeking sponsorship by state governments, there has been and increase in the amount of sponsorships that are being handed out. Queensland, Victoria, South Australia, Northern Territory and Tasmania have diversified their occupations list and managed to increase the amount of work visas being issued.

    2. Use your family connections

    Anyone with close family living in a state or territory of Australia is also allowed to be sponsored by that state for occupations that are not on the list. These “off-list” occupations are many and varied.

    Tasmania, ACT and South Australia have already increased their number of sponsorships being granted for “off-list” occupations. This was done soon after the migration changes were announced, no doubt to offset any decrease in migration to these areas.

    Temporary work visa not abolished, but replaced

    Despite many saying the temporary work visa (subclass 457 visa) is abolished, in reality it has actually been replaced. Earlier this year, the Australian government announced that the temporary skills shortage visa (TSS) will be introduced in place of the subclass 457 visa.

    The TSS visa will include short-term occupations for up to two-years and medium-term occupations for up to four-years.

    Don’t go it alone, get help when you need it most

    When preparing your application, it is best to seek MARA (Migration Agents Registration Authority) registered agents to help clear up any concerns you might have.

    They will also advise you on what course of action to take if the recent migration changes affect you directly. Going through an expert will also ensure your application will have the best chance of success. An immigration agent can also advise you on which visa route is the best for you and your family.

    Get help with your Aussie visa application. Contact our Melbourne office on +61 (1) 800 039 300 or drop us an email on

    We are a professional services company that specialises in cross-border financial and immigration advice and solutions.

    Our teams in the UK, South Africa and Australia can ensure that when you decide to move overseas, invest offshore or expand your business internationally, you’ll do so with the backing of experienced local experts.

    • visa application
      What’s the difference between a UK Marriage Visitor visa and a spouse visa?
      Nov 08, 2019  |  by John Dunn
    • Sydney skyline
      Invest in Australian property and earn permanent residency for you and your family
      Oct 18, 2019  |  by Sam Hopwood
    • Australia-look-see.png
      Everything you should do on your look-and-see visit to Australia
      Aug 12, 2019  |  by Sam Hopwood
    • Porto cityscape
      10 reasons to move to Porto, Portugal
      Jul 29, 2019  |  by John Dunn
    • Oxford-street
      Everything you ever wanted to know about applying for a UK Tier 2 (General) visa
      Jul 18, 2019  |  by John Dunn
    • Australia skyline
      Landed a temporary job Down Under? Get an Australian working holiday visa
      Jul 08, 2019  |  by Guest writer
    • sydney-australia
      Australian visa processing times: How long you’ll wait for approval
      Jun 27, 2019  |  by Sam Hopwood
    • British passport and citizenship approved
      British citizenship and indefinite leave to remain: Why you need to know the difference
      Jun 25, 2019  |  by John Dunn
    • seven-corners-image
      The importance of purchasing travel insurance with a Tier 4 UK student visa
      Jun 13, 2019  |  by Guest writer
    • kangaroos
      Two new Aussie visa routes for skilled migrants
      May 23, 2019  |  by Sam Hopwood

    South Africa

    Cape Town

    Regent Square
    Doncaster Road
    Kenilworth 7708 +27 (0) 21 657 2120


    25 Richefond Circle
    Umhlanga 4320 +27 (0) 31 536 8844

    United Kingdom


    One Croydon
    12-16 Addiscombe Road
    Croydon CR0 0XT +44 (0) 20 7759 7514



    9 Yarra Street
    South Yarra
    VIC 3141 +613 (0) 8651 4500

    Sable International is a trading name of 1st Contact Money Limited (company number 07070528), registered in England and Wales. We are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK (FCA no. 517570), the Financial Services Conduct Authority in South Africa (1st Contact Money [PTY] Ltd - FSP no. 41900) and hold an Australian Financial Services Licence issued by ASIC to deal in foreign exchange (1st Contact Group - AFS Licence number 335 126).

    We use cookies to provide the best website experience for you. Using this website means that you agree to this. How we use cookies.