Application fees will be reduced and the tax to be paid will not be increased as previously announced. Plus, some flexibility to the work limitations of these visas.
Are you in Australia on a Working Holiday Visa?
Are you thinking about coming to Australia on a Working Holiday Visa?
Or in your case it is a Work & Holiday Visa? Yes, there are 2 types of visa with slightly different names.
Last year the Australian Government had announced that people on the visas above would have to pay tax of 32.5 per cent, and this caused a lot of commotion and complaints from visa holders and employers/business alike.
Today the Government announced that instead of 32.5% it will be 19% tax rate that holders of Working Holiday (Subclass 417) and Work & Holiday (Subclass 462) visa will pay on earnings of up to A$37,000.00, starting on 1 January 2017. Ordinary marginal tax rates apply after that.
This comes as part of a bunch of measures the Government wants to implement in order to attract more working-holiday makers, as numbers started to go down a couple of years ago.
The government will also be making some changes to the Working Holiday and Work & Holiday Visa in relation to the maximum age: applicants will be able to apply for these visas up until when they are 35 years of age. The current cut-off age is 30.
The official announcement from the Treasurer, Scott Morrison, said the following:
The Turnbull Government recognises that working holiday makers are an important part of Australia’s $43.4 billion tourism industry and a key source of labour, particularly in the agriculture, horticulture, tourism and hospitality sectors.
From 1 January 2017 the Government will set the tax rate applying to working holiday makers at 19 per cent on earnings up to $37,000, rather than the 32.5 per cent announced in the 2015-2016 Budget, with ordinary marginal tax rates applying after that. The Government will also reduce the application charge for working holiday maker visas by $50 to $390. These changes will lower the cost of coming to Australia for working holiday makers and leave them with more money in their pockets to spend while here. We will also seek to boost the arrivals of working holiday makers, which have been in decline since 2012/13 as a consequence of factors including exchange rate variations and changed economic conditions in source countries. We will introduce more flexible arrangements to benefit working holiday makers and industry, allowing an employer with premises in different regions to employ a WHM for 12 months, with the WHM working up to six months in each region.
In addition, we will task Tourism Australia to promote Australia to potential working holiday makers through a $10 million global youth targeted advertising campaign.
So good news all around!
Co-Founder, Director and Registered Migration Agent 0532487
As we reported in December 2015, the government announced it was going to implement a new visa for entrepreneurs as part of their A$1 billion plan to foster greater innovation across 11 different departments, including Immigration.
The new visa was supposed to start in November 2016 but it has kicked into effect on the 10th September, so it’s open for applications now.
As it happens many times, everyone is calling the visa the new Entrepreneur Visa when it is not a new visa and that is not really its name.
We are going to get really technical here, but what is being called the new Entrepreneur visa is actually a new stream within the existing Subclass 188 Business Innovation and Investment visa, which is part of the Business Innovation and Investment Program. This program is the one that includes the controversial Significant Investor Visa (requiring investment of A$5 million) and the Premium Investor Visa (requiring investment of A$15 million.
The new Entrepreneur stream within the Subclass 188 Visa is a 2-stage visa, first starting with a Provisional (Temporary) Visa stage and later leading to a Permanent Visa, after the holder satisfies several requirements.
To be able to apply and be granted the first provisional stage of the visa, applicants will have to meet several requirements, including the following:
- have a funding agreement from a third party for at least AUD$200,000.00;
- such funding must be to undertake a complying entrepreneur activity;
- applicants must also be nominated by a state or territory government;
- must be under 55 years of age,
- must have competent English skills.
What is a “Complying Entrepreneur Activity”?
It is an activity that the visa applicant is undertaking, or proposing to undertake, relating to an innovative idea, proposing to lead to:
- the commercialisation of a product or services in Australia; or
- the development of an enterprise or business in Australia.
At the moment the visa excludes enterprises in the fields of labour hire businesses, residential real estate and buying into an existing businesses (including franchises), as the government considers these activities to be “insufficiently innovative”.
I am assuming this is something the government may change according to their economic objectives, let’s wait and watch…
The idea at the moment is for applicants to really be coming up with innovative products and services as well as business.
But what we are really interested in is how the Department of Immigration will decide what is “Innovative”, and what’s not?
At the moment policy is guiding case officers to consider the proposed activity as an ‘innovative business idea’ if the concept is supported by the nominator (an Australian State or Territory where the activity proposes to be undertaken) and the funding body.
So it seems that for now the decision will be made outside of the Department, which initially is a good thing as case officers are not always equipped to make decisions relating to business and entrepreneurship.
What kind of “Funding” will be accepted and who are the Funding Bodies?
There must be one or more third parties funding the enterprise with at least A$200,000.00 via one or more legally enforceable agreements between the applicant or its entity and the funding parties.
The funding party or parties must be within a list determined by the Department of Immigration as suitable and it includes only
- Commonwealth agencies;
- State and Territory governments;
- Publicly funded research organisations; and
- investors registered as a Venture Capital Limited Partnership/s (VCLP) or an Early Stage Venture Capital Limited Partnership/s (ESVCLP).
Funding from a combination of these sources is also acceptable.
The VCLP has a limited list of funders and some of them are looking to invest in/fund only very specific types of enterprise.
Which leads us to ask the question: how many foreign entrepreneurs and international students with business ideas will really be able to meet these visa requirements?
We will have to wait and see…
Co-Founder, Director and Registered Migration Agent 0532487
*If you would like to know if you are eligible for the Subclass 188 Business Innovation and Investment visa via the new Entrepreneur Stream, please contact us here.
We will then collect more information about you and assess your eligibility, determining which one of our services better suits your needs. We can assist you with other services as well in relation to starting and expanding an innovative business in Australia.
IMPORTANT: There are many other requirements outlined by the Department of Immigration. This article is to provide general information only and it is not to be taken as an exhaustive list of the requirements/criteria to apply for the Subclass 188 Business Innovation and Investment visa via the new Entrepreneur Stream.
If you are considering applying for the Subclass 188 Business Innovation and Investment visa via the new Entrepreneur Stream, please consult a Registered Migration Agent to find out if you meet all of the requirements.Read more
The ACT Government released its Occupation List on 30 August for the Skilled Nominated Subclass 190 Visa
UPDATE: Since publishing the list on the 30th August, ACT has already closed applications for State Nomination from overseas residents.
If you are living overseas you will not be able to commence an application for ACT nomination of a Skilled Nominated (subclass 190) visa until the program reopens in 2017.
Applications lodged on or before 13 September 2016 will still be processed.
If you are living in Canberra this announcement does not affect your application.
The Australian Capital Territory (ACT) Government released its Occupation List on 30 August 2016 which provides an overview of the occupations the ACT will be nominating for the Skilled Nominated Subclass 190 Visa for the new financial year 2016/2017.
Click here and check out the entire ACT Nominated Occupation List for the Skilled Nominated Subclass 190 Visa for the 2016-2017 program year.
Some of the popular occupations in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) Government list this year include:
Construction Project Manager
Real Estate Agent
The following popular occupations included in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) Government list previously, were removed:
Chief Executive or Managing Director
Corporate General Manager
Sales and Marketing Manager
Public Relations Manager
Child Care Centre Manager
If you would like to know if you are eligible for the Skilled Nominated Subclass 190 by the ACT Government, please contact us here.
We will then collect more information about you and assess your eligibility, determining which one of our services better suits your needs.
IMPORTANT: There are many other requirements outlined by the Department of Immigration, Skills Assessment Authorities and also by the ACT Government. This article is to provide general information only and it is not to be taken as an exhaustive list of the requirements/criteria to apply for the Skilled Nominated Subclass 190 Visa with the ACT.
If you are considering applying for a Skilled Nominated Subclass 190 Visa nominated by the ACT, or any other states, please consult a Registered Migration Agent to find out if you meet all of the requirements.