New Legislation Outlaws Payment for Visas

On Wednesday 16 September, the new Turnbull government introduced legislation to Parliament to make it a criminal offence for a sponsor to be paid by a visa applicant in return for securing a migration outcome.

The changes are in line with the government commissioned Independent Review of the Integrity of the Subclass 457 Programme, in which 22 recommendations were made to effectively strengthen the programme.

“The Migration Amendment (Charging for a Migration Outcome) Bill 2015 implements this recommendation and expands the application beyond the 457 visa programme to other temporary and permanent work visas,” former Assistant Minister Michaelia Cash said.

She went on to say that “unlawful arrangements whereby payment, inducements or other incentives are promised or exchanged to try and achieve a migration outcome will not be tolerated by this Government.”

There will be a framework for criminal, civil and administrative sanctions against sponsors who try to ‘sell’ sponsorships, or seek to obtain some kind of advantage in return for sponsoring a person for a temporary or permanent work visa.

FCB Smart Visa will continue to provide updates on new migration legislation as it becomes available. If you have any migration matters that you would like to discuss, please call one of our migration agents on 02 9922 5188.