Department Announces LMT and SAF Levy Policy Updates

The Department of Home Affairs has published a new update concerning the upcoming rollout of the government’s Skilling Australians Fund (SAF), and revised Labour Market Testing (LMT) requirements.

Although the Department has yet to set an official launch date, it has announced that the SAF legislation—which was passed by the Australian Parliament on 9 May 2018—is expected to come into effect during the first quarter of the 2018-2019 period.

Once the legislation is implemented then multiple new regulations will begin to come into effect, including the introduction of the SAF tax levy, which will be payable for:

  • The Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) Visa,
  • the Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) subclass 186 Visa,
  • the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) subclass 187 Visa.

The government’s LMT regulations have also been considerably tightened, and feature a series of new restrictions, including:

  • A requirement that LMT must be conducted no more than four months before a sponsorship application is lodged,
  • The LMT period must consist of at least four weeks,
  • Any advertisement posted as part of a company’s LMT must stipulate any skills or experience requirements that are necessary for the position.

The list of acceptable mediums in which a nominated position may be advertised for LMT purposes has also been extended to include:

  • The LinkedIn online recruitment platform,
  • Any industry specific recruitment website that is relevant to the nominated position.

Employers should also remember that until the new regulations come into effect, previous LMT requirements must continue to be undertaken in accordance with the arrangements specified in the Procedural Instructions Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa (subclass 482) – nominations section.

Further information regarding the aforementioned changes can be found here.

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