The New Skilling Australians Fund (SAF) Levy

There are several reasons why one would need to apply for an Australian visa. Depending on the migration purpose, one can either apply for a partner visa, work visa, or study visa. We also have some special types of visas that add to the list, but these are the ones mostly applied for. 

Whether you’re applying for a work-related, family-related, or study visa, you need to have valid sponsorship for you to get an approval. 

Recently Australia has become a popular destination for skilled immigrants looking forward to start their career in a foreign country. For this reason, there are different subclass work visas that one could apply for, depending on the intended duration of stay.

For Australia work visas, an applicant needs to be sponsored by the employer. On top of this, an employer needs to pay the Nomination Training Contribution (NTC) under the New Skilling Australians Fund (SAF) Levy.


The New Skilling Australians Fund (SAF) Levy

The new SAF Levy was launched by the Australian Department of Home Affairs on the 12th of August 2018. The purpose of this new SAF Levy is to strengthen the Skilling Australians Fund that’s managed and controlled by the department of training and education. Essentially, this fund aims to boost Australian trainee and apprenticeship programs to improve Australia’s job growth. 

The new Levy applies to nominations covered by the following visa subclasses:

  • Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) subclass 482 visa
  • Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) subclass 186 visa
  • Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) subclass 187 visa

In each case, an employer is subjected to a Nomination Training Contribution (NTC) charge when they’re lodging a nomination. Different charges apply in each case depending on the size of the business. 

For instance, with the Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) subclass 482 visa, the NTC charge for the short-term stream is $2400, whereas for the long-term stream is $4800. For the remaining two visa subclasses, the charge is $3000. This applies to business with an annual turnover below $10 million.

However, for businesses with an annual turnover above $10 million, the NTC charges are as follows:

TSS short-term stream – $3600

TSS long-term stream – $7200

ENS/RSMS, occupation on the Medium and Long term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) or Regional Occupation List (ROL) – $5000


Is the Nomination Training Contribution (NTC) charge refundable?

The NTC may be refunded under the following circumstances:

  • If the nomination is withdrawn because the NTC charge has been calculated incorrectly from the nomination information
  • The nomination is withdrawn because the sponsorship-related to it is withdrawn or refused
  • The requested labor agreement isn’t effected and so the nomination is withdrawn
  • The associated visa application is rejected on some given grounds
  • The visa holder fails to turn up for the role in the nominated position

To get a refund, the person who paid the NTC charge should write a request to the Department Of Home Affairs. Fees may also be refunded without a written request in case the Department Of Home Affairs finds it reasonable. 


Australia Temporary Work Visa

This Australian work visa is meant for skilled workers who would like to work in Australia for a given period. There are two types of visa subclasses in this category. We have the Temporary Skill Shortage Visa (TSS Visa) Subclass 482 meant for professionals who would like to work in Australia for a period of up to 4 years. To qualify for this visa, one must be sponsored by the employer. 

We also have the working holiday visa subclass 417 that’s popular among the young people. With this visa, applicants aged 18-30 can extend their holiday in Australia, while working to supplement their income. 


Temporary Skill Shortage Visa (TSS Visa) Subclass 482

As we mentioned above, the TSS visa allows applicants to live in Australia, while working full-time for the sponsoring employer. One may also include dependent family members in your application. 

The visa has both a long-term and short-term stream. If your occupation falls under Short-Term Skilled Occupations List (STSOL), you’re eligible for a visa up to 2 years, which is renewable only once for two more years. On the other hand, applicants whose occupations fall under Medium and Long-Term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL), can apply for visas up to fours, are eligible to apply for permanent residency after 3 years. 

To qualify for this visa, the applicant must have the skills required for the role the employer wants them to fill. Well, the skills vary depending on the occupation, but all applicants must a minimum of two years of relevant work experience.

To ensure applicants’ qualifications and skills match the nominated position, Home Affairs case officers compare the position description on the employer’s nomination application against an applicant’s skills and qualifications. In case they don’t match, the visa application may be rejected. 

Also, the role that you’d like to fill must be one of those occupations on the Combined List of Eligible Skilled Occupations. To ascertain that the nominated position reflects the duties of the given position, the Australian Department of Home Affairs uses the Australian New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO). An applicant’s experience and education qualifications together with position description should match with what’s provided in the ANZSCO.

Additionally, if you’re not from the UK, USA, Canada, Ireland, or New Zealand, you’ll be required to the English language requirements when you lodge your application. 


Australia Skilled Immigration

The Australian skilled migration visa is meant for workers who would like to live and work in Australia. The Skillselect program allows applicants to obtain a permanent Australia visa based on their qualifications and work experience. We have at least five subclasses under this visa. However, to be considered for any of the visa subclasses, one must have at least 60 points from the general skilled migration points table.

If you’re planning to outsource skills to take up some roles in your business, be prepared to pay the NTC charge. Apart from sponsoring the visa applicant, every employer is expected to pay this charge. 



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