Three year WHV and changes to Seasonal Worker Program
Ministers Coleman and Littleproud have announced by media release changes to visa programs that will assist farmers access a larger number of overseas workers.
Changes to Working Holiday Maker visas
• Work and Holiday makers (subclass 462) will be able to undertake regional plant and animal cultivation work in additional priority areas to become eligible for a second visa.
• Extension of the period a WHM (subclass 417 and 462) may work with the same agricultural employer from six to 12 months.
• Introduction of a third year visa option for WHM (subclasses 417 and 462), who from 1 July 2019 onwards complete six months of regional work in the second year.
• Increase the number of places available for Work and Holiday Maker program (subclass 462) by
lifting annual caps available to a number of countries participating in the subclass 462 visa program.
These changes require a strict workforce test to be applied to ensure Australian workers are given the first opportunity for work.
Changes to the Seasonal Worker Program
• Increase work period in Australia to nine months for all workers (currently six months for some countries).
• Increase validity of labour market testing prior to taking on workers from three to six months.
• Reduce out of pocket expenses for employers (workers repay their full travel costs except for the first $300; a reduction from the previous $500).
Working Holiday Maker Visas – third visa amendments
Legislative Instrument – F2019L00196 – Migration Amendment (Working Holiday Maker) Regulations 2019, increases the maximum number of Subclass 417 and 462 visas a person may hold in Australia to three visas.
These Regulations increase the maximum number of ‘working holiday maker’ visas from two to three, where the visa holder meets additional work requirements.
The applicant is required to complete 6 months specified work in specified circumstances in order to be eligible for a third ‘working holiday maker’ visa.
Applicants for third WHV must have undertaken 6 months specified work while holding a second WHV and that this work was carried out on or after 1 July 2019.
This Instrument commences on 1 July 2019.
Subclass 462 – Extra postcodes for areas of work in all states, NT and Norfolk Island
Additional postcodes for NSW, Norfolk Island, the NT, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria and WA are specified for the work specified in Schedule 4 of this Instrument. Schedule 4 of this Instrument contains a list of jobs in the agricultural industry only.
Work and Holiday visas – Spain and Israel – increases
In common with general increases in the number of working holiday maker, and work and holiday visa places available, further places have been announced for citizens of Spain and Israel.
The number of places available to Spanish citizens will increase to 3,400.
The number for Israeli citizens will increase to 2,500.
These changes came into effect on 28 December 2018.
Citizens of both countries will be eligible to extend their stay for a second and third year where they meet the criteria for those extensions.
Minister Coleman’s full media release is available here
Working Holiday visa (subclass 417)
Work and Holiday visa (subclass 462)
Working Holiday Visa Assessment
Find out if you qualify for a Working Holiday visa.