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  • Writer's pictureElan Rysher

Navigating the Maze of Recent Australian Visa Changes

The long-anticipated employer-sponsored visa changes came into effect on 25 November 2023. Some changes were expected, others came as somewhat of a surprise.

In this article, we'll delve into recent amendments to the Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa (subclass 482) and the Employer Nomination Scheme visa in the Temporary Residence Transition stream (ENS subclass 186 TRT). Additionally, we'll explore the conclusion of the Covid concession period.

Subclass 482

Change: The limit on the number of times a person can lodge short-term sc482 visa applications from onshore has been removed. Applicants can be inside or outside Australia at the time of application regardless of how many times they have applied for short-term stream 482 visas in the past. It is important to remember that there are other factors that can prevent a person from lodging a visa application onshore, for example, a Section 48 bar.

No change: Short-term stream visas are still subject to a maximum 2 year visa period (it's 4 years in the medium to long-term stream). Visa application charges remain cheaper for short-term 482 visas.

No Change: The Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE) criterion still applies to short-term 482 visas. However, it will be interesting to see how this requirement will be enforced given that short-term stream 482 visa holders now have a path to permanent residence.

Subclass 186 TRT

Change: applicants can now be nominated for TRT once they have (a) held a subclass 482 or 457 visa; and (b) worked in the nominated position; for at least 2 of the last 3 years.

Change: occupations lists for 186 TRT nominations have been removed. Instead, employers are now required to nominate an occupation matching the ANZSCO Unit Group of their previous 482 or 457 visa nomination. The Unit Group is represented in the first 4 digits of the ANZSCO Code. For example, a sc482 holder sponsored as Analyst Programmer ANSCO Code 261311 could be nominated for TRT as a Developer Programmer 261312.

Change: all 482 visa holders can be nominated for 186 TRT regardless of the stream they are in. This includes 482 Short Term and Labour Agreement streams.

Change: Covid concessions relating to unpaid leave due to Covid shutdown have ended. This means that all unpaid leave are now excluded from the 2 year work experience requirement for TRT, even of the unpaid leave was due to Covid shutdown.

Change: legacy 457 workers who remained in Australia during the pandemic have been excluded from the 45 years age limit. This concession will end of 30 June 2024.

No change: 482 holders sponsored under an On-Hire Labour Agreement are still unable to access TRT. This is because of the requirement to have a direct employer-employee relationship between the visa applicant and the sponsor. Additionally, occupation Code 070499 which does not belong to ANZSCO cannot be nominated to TRT.

End of the Covid Concession Period

As of November 25, 2023, the Covid Concession Period concludes. This return to 'business as usual' impacts various visas. A few key examples:

- Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) visa applicants must be in Australia at the time of lodgement, unless they are applying as a subsequent entrant or under the Replacement stream.

- Contributory Parent (subclass 143) visa applicants must now be outside Australia at the time of grant.

- Skilled Regional 887 applicants can only access the employment requirement concession if they held an eligible skilled provisional visa during the concession period, and make a valid application by 25 February 2024.

Other Noteworthy Changes

- Legislation amendments allow flexibility for subclass 309 and 820 Partner visa applicants and 485 applicants to be in or outside Australia at the time of visa grant.

- Offshore Partner (subclass 309) applicants whose application was refused can now apply directly for a merits review at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal. Previously only sponsors were eligible to apply to AAT for 309 refusals.

For more information please Contact Us or email

Elan Rysher is a Registered Migration Agent and Qualified Student Counsellor. He is the main Writer for ImmiUpdates and the founder of Rysher Migration. Elan has many years of experience working in immigration, finance and health. Being a former migrant himself, Elan is passionate about helping others fulfil their Australian dream.


Information (or the lack of it) contained in ImmiUpdates should not be relied on as immigration assistance or advice. ImmiUpdates expressly disclaim any liability, arising at law, in equity or otherwise, for any information published or not published in past, the present or future editions of the blog. People seeking immigration assistance should seek advice from a registered migration agent and those seeking legal advice should consult a lawyer. The copyright in the newsletter belongs to Rysher Migration Services and no part of the blog is to be reproduced by any means without the written consent of Rysher Migration Services.


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