Visa changes after 1st July 2017

Published on July 4, 2017


The visa changes you need to be aware of

Written and edited by: Kellee Gray & Megan Shorter


The First of July always is an exciting time, the start of a new month, a new Financial Year, we are getting closer to summer (that excites most of us!), but this year, those of us who are affected by changes to Migration have held our breath- not really knowing what is to come.

Whilst we were made aware of many of these changes, there were a few more that came as a surprise. The review of the Short Term Skilled Occupation List-(STSOL) & Medium and Long Term Strategic Skills List (say that 10 times fast!) also known as MLTSSL, was something that had a lot of us very nervous.

A lot has now changed in the world of migration at the start of July, and we have summed up below the changes that you will need to be aware of, specific to the Medical Industry and how these may impact you.


What Has Changed with the Occupation Lists?

There were quite a few occupations that were added back to the lists after much backlash by different industries with only 12 removed. The GREAT news is that General Practitioners are still included on the Medium and Long Term Strategic Skills List.

You can view the lists here: Eligible Occupation Lists


You want me to pay how much? – DIBP increases Visa Application Charges

After the last few fee increases from DIBP, we were concerned hearing that they were going to hit us again. Luckily, this time the fees have only been increased by a few dollars. You can see the new fees here: Visa Fees After 1 July 2017

For anyone that is currently arranging an application with us that is yet to be lodged, we will provide you with an updated quote and, if you have already paid, invoice you the difference.


What has changed for the 457 Visa?

Yes, we still have a 457 visa, at least until March next year. They are really enjoying playing with this one and there are a few changes that will affect Medical Professionals:

Police Clearances
If you lodge a 457 visa after today, you will need to provide a Police Clearance for every country that you have lived in for more than 12 months in the last 10 years. This will be a requirement for all applicants over 16 years. Unfortunately, DIBP do not accept the same clearances as AHPRA (e.g. Fit2Work) so you will need to obtain these via the method prescribed by Immigration.


Tighter Training Benchmarks
Unfortunately for all Medical Practices, it will be mandatory to include all contractors’ earnings when working out payroll spend for training benchmark. They are also tightening on what can be considered training, which will affect a lot of our new sponsorship applications. This will only affect applications lodged after 1 July 2017.


Are you a Kiwi?

There is a new pathway to PR available to New Zealand citizens through a new stream of the Independent Subclass 189 visa. The criteria is minimal, but the best news about this is there is only 12 months as a Permanent Resident needed before you can apply for Citizenship!

To be able to apply for this, you would need to meet the following requirements:

  • On a Special Category Visa (SCV) subclass 444 (dependants can be on any visa)
  • Be usually resident in Australia for a continuous period of more than 5 years
  • The 5-year period started before 19th February 2016
  • Can provide tax documents (notice of assessments) for the last 4 years
  • Your taxable income for the last 4 years must be at least $53,900 (for each year)
  • You must satisfy health and character criteria

The PR costs are also broken into 2 payment stages- 20% at time of application and the remaining 80% to be paid at time of decision.


What has changed for Employer Nominated PR?

English Language Requirements
Exemptions for high income earners will no longer be available, you must have competent English at the time of Application for all Employer nominated Permanent Residency – Whether Direct Entry or Temporary Resident Transition. For TRT, you will be able to satisfy the English requirement with evidence of 5 years study in English.


Age Requirements
For all applications for DE you will need to be younger than 45 to apply. TRT remains at 50 years until March 2018. Current Age Exemptions still apply.


Tougher Training
The training benchmarks match those required for the 457 visa and will be much tougher. This affects 186 DE and 186/187 TRT nominations.


Genuine Need
There has always been an expectation from Case Officers to show need for an employee for these Employer Nominations, but now the requirements are in legislation and much stricter. All Employer Nominated PR applications (DE & TRT) must show that they have a Genuine Need for a paid employee in that position.


Are you applying for Skilled PR (189)?

Age Requirement
This one is nice and simple, the only change that affects us is the age requirement being reduced to 45 years. Unlike Employer Nominated PR, there are no age exemptions available for the subclass 189.


Updates on State Migration (190/489):

Age Requirement
It has only just been confirmed that the age requirement of 45 years will also extend to 190 and 489 applications. There are no age exemptions available under these subclasses.


  • QLD: Applications for Qld are still closed. This should not be for too much longer. Keep an eye on the People Medical Consulting Facebook Page for updates
  • NSW: The list from 2015-2016 still stands for NSW so I would suggest that a review will be released soon. GPs are still eligible for nomination under 190 & for all districts under 489
  • ACT: Applications for ACT are currently closed and will re-open on 5th July 2017, along with the release of the new ACT Skill Occupation List. Again, keep an eye on Facebook for updates
  • VIC: GPs are not on the list for nomination in Victoria
  • TAS: GPs are eligible for nomination in Tasmania. The list was reviewed in April 2017, so should stand for some time now
  • SA: GPs are not eligible for nomination by SA
  • WA: after recently culling the list from 178 occupations to just 18 – GPs are one of the lucky occupations that are still eligible
  • NT: GPs are eligible in NT but must have English equivalent to 7 in each section for IELTS.



After all that information, your head is probably spinning! The best thing to do as always is to contact us to see how this may have impacted you individually, or even just for a chat – we love to know what is happening for you all!

If any further changes will occur will release the updates as we receive them both on this blog and on our social media business page People Medical Consulting.


We are here to support you!


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