Upcoming Changes in Immigration Policy: Increased TSMIT and Expanded Pathways to Permanent Residence

The Minister for Home Affairs, the Hon Clare O’Neil MP, recently unveiled significant updates to immigration policies during her address at the National Press Club. These updates encompass an increase in the Temporary Skilled Income Threshold (TSMIT) and the introduction of expanded pathways to permanent residency for individuals holding employer-sponsored temporary skilled visas.

Effective from July 1, 2023, the TSMIT will rise from $53,900 to $70,000. As a result, new nomination applications will be required to meet the elevated TSMIT of $70,000 or adhere to the annual market salary rate, whichever proves higher. It is important to note that these changes will not impact current visa holders or nominations submitted prior to July 1, 2023.

By the end of 2023, the Temporary Residence Transition (TRT) stream of the Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186) visa will be made available to all Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa holders. To qualify, applicants must continue working in their nominated occupation as specified in their TSS visa(s). Moreover, the eligible occupations will no longer be restricted to those listed in the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL). The eligibility criteria for the TRT stream will be shortened from three years to two years of employment with the sponsoring employer. Applicants must also fulfill all other nomination and visa requirements associated with the TRT stream of the Employer Nomination Scheme visa.

To facilitate these enhanced pathways, the government plans to remove the limitations on the number of Short-term stream TSS visa applications that can be made by visa holders while in Australia. This temporary measure aims to assist individuals currently residing in the country, eliminating the need for them to travel overseas to submit additional visa applications.

These policy changes align with the government’s commitment, as expressed during the Jobs and Skills Summit in September 2022, to expand the opportunities for temporary skilled sponsored workers to obtain permanent residency. As a result, these revisions aim to provide fairer access to permanent residency while offering greater clarity to TSS visa holders and their employers regarding the available pathways. Employers will have the chance to address skill shortages by ensuring a broader range of occupations have access to a permanent employer-sponsored pathway.

Additional information regarding these updates will be provided closer to their implementation date. Regular updates regarding these changes will be published on the Department of Home Affairs website. Stay informed by visiting the website regularly for the latest information.

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