In order for a business to operate smoothly and at its peak capacity, it must have responsible, reliable skilled employees. But when there is a labour shortage or a shortage of skilled workers, employers might have difficulty filling the necessary employment positions within their companies. One way to resolve this issue is to apply for a Visa to bring employees from overseas to work for your company.
There are several types of Visas available for employers to apply for. These Visas include; 482, 186 or 187 Visas. A 482 Visa is available to employers if there is a temporary skills shortage in a skilled area of employment. A 186 Visa is for employers to nominate skilled overseas workers to remain in their employ and work in Australia permanently. Finally, a 187 Visa is similar to a 186 Visa but requires the employee to remain with the employer for at least 2 years after receiving the visa. However, it is possible that an employer could have a position(s) to fill that does not meet the requirements of any of these Visas.
In the instance that the position you have available does not qualify for a 482, 186 or 187 Visa you will need to enter into a different type of labour agreement. This type of labour agreement allows an employer to bring an overseas worker to Australia to work for a limited period of time. This agreement can be entered into between an Australian business and the Australian government. The agreement will only be granted by the government if the employer can show that there is a need for the overseas worker because the Australian employee base cannot provide the needed worker. In addition, the employer must be able to show that, in the future, they are committed to hiring Australian workers, rather than becoming dependent on overseas workers.
The types of agreements that can be entered into include;
- Company Specific labour Agreements – specifically between the Australian government and one specific business.
- Industry labour Agreements – where several same businesses approach the Australian government to hire specifically for their industry
- Designated Area Migration Agreements (DAMA) – these agreements are between a specific area of Australia and the government
- Global Talent Scheme Agreements – these agreements are for highly specialized and specifically defined skills that cannot be found amongst Australian workers
- Project Agreements – these agreements are for particular projects such as construction or infrastructure, for which an employer cannot find enough skilled workers to do the jobs required for the completion of the project
An employer who wants to enter into a labour agreement must;
- Complete all of the specific steps of the type of agreement they are trying to procure
- Complete the appropriate nomination application for the position they are trying to fill
- The employee who is expected to fill the position must also complete the proper application and visa forms
Before an application will be granted and a labour agreement entered into, the employer must show the following;
- They have been a business in Australia for at least 12 months and in good standing
- The business is financially solvent and can support the salaries of the requested workers
- The business has not had any legal violations filed against it nor is it under investigation for any violations
- Is in good financial standing, overall
- Has provided truthful and accurate information on their application
If these requirements are met, it is possible the labour agreement will be approved and the employee will be able to be hired by the Australian employer.
While the Australian government is not likely to allow Australian businesses to hire from overseas when Australian workers are sufficiently skilled and available to fill open positions, they do realize that there may be times when such workers are not available. During these times, if an employer takes the proper steps to secure a labour agreement, and can show that the overseas workers are necessary for the current success of their business, it is likely that a labour agreement will be granted and an employer will be permitted to hire workers from overseas.
In the event that you find yourself in need of assistance, please contact the law offices of Owen Hodge Lawyers. At Owen Hodge, we are always happy to assist clients in understanding the full ramifications of any and all of your legal needs. Please feel free to call us at your earliest convenience to schedule a consultation at 1800 780 770.