With major reforms to Australia's skilled migration program set to come into effect from July 1 this year, representatives from the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) are visiting regions across the country to explain the changes.
The next information session, which will be held in Darwin on May 8, is set to discuss the integration of the new Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) - as well as the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme - into SkillSelect, the new online skilled migrant selection register.
SkillSelect will offer more flexibility than the current system, according to a DIAC spokesperson.
"These new arrangements are designed to better respond to labour market demands and form part of ongoing reform of the skilled migration program," the spokesperson said.
The July 1 changes will streamline the current pathways for skilled migration in Australia and will have important implications for employers looking to sponsor migrant workers for permanent visas, as well as those who currently sponsor workers under the 457 visa scheme.
"Sponsors must … demonstrate they have a genuine need for the workers and that the skills required cannot be found in their region," the spokesperson explained.
There are special provisions that are made for employers and employees based in some regional areas of Australia, which the departmental representatives will clarify.
DIAC officers will be on hand in Darwin to provide information on the new migration changes, including temporary and permanent employer-sponsored visa options for local businesses.
If you are an employer planning to sponsor an overseas worker for an Australian visa, seeking out advice from a trusted migration lawyer can be an excellent idea.
A lawyer can give you valuable insight into the likelihood of a successful visa application - and if you decide to go ahead, they can help you prepare your submission to the DIAC.
Immigration lawyers are often a better resource than migration agents without specialised legal training - lawyers have years of education under their belts and can provide you with assistance if you need to make an application to an Australian court regarding your visa.
Lawyers also have a more developed knowledge of the proof and evidence required to make a visa application - and know how best to use this evidence to your advantage.