The new costs in sponsoring an overseas employee in your business

dollar sign drawn on empty notebook

The Federal Government recently introduced a Skilling Australians Fund (SAF) levy for employers wishing to sponsor overseas employees on certain temporary or permanent visas. The revenue from the SAF levies will contribute to the Skilling Australians Fund, which was designed to support the skilling of Australian workers through the growth of apprenticeships and traineeships. We explain what the costs will be for businesses seeking to employ migrant workers. 

From 12 August 2018, a Nomination Training Contribution charge (SAF levy) will be payable at the time of nomination for any employer wishing to sponsor an employee on one of the following visa subclasses: 

  • Temporary Skills Shortage (TSS) subclass 482

  • Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) subclass 186

  • Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) subclass 187

Sponsoring temporary visa applicants (TSS subclass 482)

  • Businesses with an annual turnover of less than $10 million in the most recent financial year, a SAF levy of $1,200 per year for each sponsored employee.

  • Businesses with an annual turnover of more than $10 million, will be required to pay a SAF levy of $1,800 per year for each sponsored employee on the TSS visa.

Below are some examples: 

Example 1

Company Name: ABC Pty Ltd
2017-18 turnover: $2.75m
Number of employees to be sponsored on the TSS visa: 1
Proposed length of visa: 2 years
SAF levy: $1,200 x 2 (years) = $2,400

Example 2

Company Name: XYZ Pty Ltd
2017-18 turnover: $14.8m
Number of employees to be sponsored on TSS visa: 2
Proposed length of visa for employee 1: 4 years
Proposed length of visa for employee 2: 4 years
SAF levy: $1,800 x 4 (years) x 2 (employees) = $14,400

Sponsoring permanent visa applicants (ENS and RSMS)

  • Employers with an annual turnover of less than $10 million, will be required to pay a SAF levy of $3,000 for each employee they wish to nominate on the ENS or RSMS visa.

  • Businesses with an annual turnover of more than $10 million, this levy will be $5,000 for each employee.

Below are two examples: 

Example 3

Company Name: Dutton Pty Ltd
2017-18 turnover: $9.1m
Number of employees to be sponsored on ENS/RSMS visa: 1
SAF levy: $3,000 x 1 (employee) = $3,000

Example 4

Company Name: Trump News Pty Ltd
2017-18 turnover: $27.7m
Number of employees to be sponsored on ENS/RSMS visa: 4
SAF levy: $5,000 x 4 (employees) = $20,000

Refunds

In limited circumstances, employers may be entitled to a refund of the SAF levy. These scenarios include: 

  • The nomination was withdrawn because the SAF levy payment made was incorrect

  • The nomination was withdrawn because the application to become an approved sponsor was refused

  • The nominee’s related visa application is refused on health or character grounds

  • The visa is approved but the visa holder fails to commence employment

  • The visa is approved for 2 years and the visa holder’s employment ends within the first year (the second year SAF levy may be refunded.

If you’re an employer who is seeking more information on the new costs and obligations of sponsoring overseas workers, contact Titan Migration on +61 404 010 815 or email us at info@titanmigration.com.au. We can explain it all to you in way that is easy to understand.