In this article, we will explain how to become a Standard Business Sponsor in Australia, including the application process, the processing times, fees, and the documents required for the application process.
Having the ability to sponsor overseas nationals is an invaluable tool for businesses when there is a lack of domestic workers with suitable skills. Despite its vast size, with a population of just over 25 million people, Australia is reliant on migrant workers to fill skilled roles and occupations for which there is a shortage of suitable candidates. Not all businesses in Australia can sponsor overseas workers, however. Before being able to recruit from overseas, businesses first need to be added to the list of Australian companies willing to sponsor. In this article, we will explain how to become a Standard Business Sponsor in Australia, including the application process, the processing times, fees, and the documents which must be provided.
Businesses given the status of a Standard Business Sponsor by the Australian Government can nominate and sponsor staff from overseas in skilled occupations. Standard Business Sponsors can nominate overseas staff through visa schemes such as the Temporary Skills Shortage (TSS) visa (subclass 482) and the Skilled Employer-Sponsored Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 494).
Standard Business Sponsor status is typically granted for a period of five years, after which it must be renewed.
To apply for a Standard Business Sponsor status, you will first need to gather the necessary documents to prove you have a legally established business and that it is currently operational (see the list of documents below). The next stage is to complete the online application process on the Department of Home Affairs website, as follows:
To show you have a legally established business, you will need to upload the following with your online application (the exact documents you need to provide depends on the type of business):
You will also need to provide documentation to prove the business is operational:
You will also be asked to attest that you have a strong record of or a demonstrated commitment to employing local labour and that you will not engage in discriminatory recruitment practices
The end-to-end process of applying to become a Standard Business Sponsor in Australia depends on the complexity of your case and the extent to which you have provided all of the information required in the initial application. Some applications may be processed in as little as one week, whereas some can take up to two months.
The current application fee to become a Standard Business Sponsor is AUD$420.
Suitably skilled overseas workers will need to apply for a visa through either the Temporary Skill Shortage visa (subclass 482) or the Skilled Employer-Sponsored Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 494) routes. Before they can apply, you, as their prospective employer, will need to nominate them for their visa application and have this approved. They will also need to meet the eligibility requirements for the visa they are applying for; for the 494 visa, these include:
The Australian Department of Home Affairs recommends that businesses apply to renew their sponsorship two months prior to the expiry of their current sponsor status. If you are unsure when your sponsorship permission runs out, you can check this by logging into your online immigration action (ImmiAccount).
If your application for renewal is successful, the new status will commence from the date of approval. The guidance states that before completing a renewal application, businesses need to inform the Department of Home Affairs if there have been any significant changes since the current sponsorship was granted using a notification of sponsorship change form (e.g. if your business location has changed).
If your sponsorship runs out prior to a decision being made on your renewal, the Department of Home Affairs will stop processing any pending applications for nomination until approval is given. If you allow your sponsorship permission to lapse before applying for renewal, a fresh application is then required. To renew your sponsorship, you will need to:
Compared to some other sponsorship systems, the Australian Standard Business Sponsor scheme is relatively simple and easy to apply for. As long as you have a legally established business that is operational and there is no adverse information that may count against your application, you can be very confident of receiving a positive outcome. If you need any assistance with your application, speak to an immigration lawyer who can guide you through the process.
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