Obligations as a Standard Business Sponsor

Your Obligations

What you must do

You have obligations as a sponsor. Some of your obligations apply beyond the term of sponsorship approval.

To retain or renew your standard business sponsorship, you must continue to meet your sponsor obligations.

Tell the Department or Ethos Migration Lawyers when certain events occur

You must tell us, in writing, when certain events occur.u

Examples of things you must let the Department know about in writing include changes to your:

  • legal name
  • trading name
  • registration details
  • business structure
  • ongoing communication contact
  • owners, directors, principals or partners
  • business address

You must let the Department know in writing if your business:

  • becomes insolvent or is bankrupt
  • goes into receivership, liquidation or administration
  • ceases to exist as a legal entity

You must let the Department know in writing if the person you sponsor:

  • ceases employment with you
  • has a change in duties
  • did not commence working with you

You must also let the Department know in writing if there are any changes to how you meet your training obligations.

This obligation starts on the day The Department approve your standard business sponsorship or the work agreement commences.

This obligation ends two years after:

  • your sponsorship or the work agreement ends and
  • you no longer employ a sponsored visa holder

All businesses

Let the Department know within 28 calendar days if:

  • the visa holder’s employment ends or is expected to end (the sponsor must tell the Department if the end date changes)
  • there are changes to the work duties carried out by the sponsored visa holder
  • you have paid the return travel costs of a sponsored visa holder or any of their family members in accordance with the obligation to pay return travel costs
  • you have become insolvent within the meaning of subsections 5 (2) and (3) of the Bankruptcy Act 1966 and section 95A of the Corporations Act 2001
  • your business ceases to exist as a legal entity

Companies

Let the Department know within 28 calendar days if a new director is appointed.

Also let the Department know within 28 calendar days if an administrator is appointed for the company under Part 5.3A of the Corporations Act 2001:

  • the company resolves by special resolution to be wound up voluntarily under subsection 491(1) of the Corporations Act 2001
  • a court has ordered that the company be wound up in insolvency under Part 5.4, or on other grounds under Part 5.4A, of the Corporations Act 2001
  • a court has appointed an official liquidator to be the provisional liquidator of the company under Part 5.4B of the Corporations Act 2001
  • a court has approved a compromise or arrangement proposed by the company under Part 5.1 of the Corporations Act 2001
  • the property of the company becomes subject to a receiver or other controller under Part 5.2 of the Corporations Act 2001
  • procedures are initiated for the deregistration of the company under Part 5A.1 of the Corporations Act 2001

Individuals

If you operate your business as an individual, let the Department know within 28 days if:

  • you enter into a personal insolvency agreement under Part X of the Bankruptcy Act 1966
  • you enter into a debt agreement under Part IX of the Bankruptcy Act 1966
  • a sequestration order is made against your estate under Part IV of the Bankruptcy Act 1966
  • you become a bankrupt by virtue of the presentation of a debtor’s petition under Part IV of the Bankruptcy Act 1966
  • you present a declaration of intention to present a debtor’s petition under Part IV of the Bankruptcy Act 1966
  • a composition or scheme of arrangement is presented in relation to you in accordance with Division 6 of Part IV of the Bankruptcy Act 1966

Partnerships

Let the Department know within 28 calendar days if:

  • a new partner joins the partnership
  • any of the events listed for an individual or a company occurs

Unincorporated associations

Let the Department know within 28 calendar days if:

  • a new member is appointed to the managing committee of the association
  • any of the events listed for an individual or a company occurs

Ensure your employee works only in the nominated occupation

You must ensure that your sponsored employee works only in the occupation you nominated them for.

If you want a visa holder to work in a different occupation, lodge a new nomination.

If you are sponsoring them under the Temporary Skill Shortage visa (subclass 482), the employee will also need to apply for and be granted a new visa.

This obligation starts:

  • on the day the Department grant the nominee a visa or
  • on the day the nomination is approved if the nominee is already working for you

This obligation ends on the day (whichever is the earliest):

  • your employee has a nomination approved for a different approved sponsor
  • the Department grant your employee a visa that is not a TSS, bridging, criminal justice or enforcement visa
  • your employee leaves Australia and their TSS visa (or any subsequent bridging visa) is no longer in effect

If you are a standard business sponsor, you must employ the person you have sponsored under a written contract of employment.

Unless the nominated occupation is exempt, you cannot supply or be involved in recruiting or hiring the sponsored employee to another business unless:

  • you were lawfully operating a business in Australia when the Department approved your standard business sponsorship or when the terms of your approval were last varied, and
  • the business is an associated entity

This obligation ends on the day the Department grant your employee a visa that is not a TSS, bridging, criminal justice or enforcement visa.

This obligation continues if the Department grant your employee another TSS visa to continue to work for you.

Ensure equivalent terms and conditions of employment

If you are a standard business sponsor:

  • the annual earnings of the employee must be at least the same as those stated on the nomination application when the Department approved the application
  • the employment conditions of the employee must not be less favourable than those of an equivalent Australian worker

Note, this obligation:

  • applies only if the annual earnings of the employee is less than AUD250,000.
  • also applies to labour agreement sponsors unless otherwise stated in the labour agreement

This obligation starts the day (whichever is the earliest):

  • the Department grant your employee TSS visa or
  • the Department approve your nomination if your employee already holds a TSS or subclass 457 visa

This obligation ends the day:

  • the nominated employee stops working for you or
  • the Department grant your employee a visa that is not a TSS, bridging, criminal justice or enforcement visa

This obligation continues if the Department grant your employee another TSS visa to continue to work for you.

Not engage in discriminatory recruitment practices

If you are a standard business sponsor who lawfully operates a business in Australia, you must not engage in, or have not engaged in, discriminatory recruitment practices that adversely affect Australian citizens, or any other person, based on their visa or citizenship status.

Keep records to show that in recruiting a TSS visa holder, you did not discriminate on citizenship or visa status.

Note: This obligation started on 19 April 2016. It is not engaged if discrimination in recruitment decisions is evident on other grounds such as sex, gender, race, social group or pregnancy. These issues are outside the remit of the Department and should be directed to other relevant agencies, such as the Fair Work Ombudsman or the Australian Human Rights Commission.

Keep records

You must keep records to show your compliance with your sponsorship obligations. All records must be kept in a reproducible format and some must be capable of verification by an independent person. In addition to records kept under other Australian government, and state or territory laws, also keep records of:

  • written requests for payment of travel costs for the employee or their family, including when the request was received
  • how and when you paid the travel costs, how much you paid, and who you paid it to
  • any event you need to report to the Department, including the date and method of notification and where the notification was provided
  • tasks performed by the employee in relation to the nominated occupation and where the tasks were performed
  • earnings paid to the sponsored visa holder (unless the sponsored visa holder earns AUD250,000 or more)
  • money applied or dealt with in any way on behalf of, or as directed by, the employee (unless the sponsored visa holder earns AUD250,000 or more)
  • non-monetary benefits provided to the employee. Record the agreed value and the time at which, or the period over which, those benefits were provided (unless the sponsored visa holder earns AUD250,000 or more)
  • if there is an equivalent worker in your workplace, the terms and conditions of the equivalent worker, including the period over which the terms and conditions apply (unless the sponsored visa holder earns AUD250,000 or more)
  • the written contract of employment you engage each employee under
  • how you are complying with the training obligations if you were lawfully operating a business in Australia when the Department approved your standard business sponsorship or the terms of your approval as a standard business sponsor were varied
  • the records you need to keep as party to a work agreement, if applicable

This obligation starts the day the Department approve your sponsorship or the nominee starts work with you.

This obligation ends two years after:

  • your sponsorship or the work agreement ends and
  • you no longer employ a sponsored visa holder

Provide records and information

You must provide records or information if requested by a departmental officer. The records or information will be those that:

  • you are required to keep under Commonwealth, state or territory law
  • you are obliged to keep as a sponsor

The records and information will be used to determine whether:

  • a sponsorship obligation is being or has been complied with, and
  • other circumstances in w