Training obligation for companies under the 457 visa program

The training obligation required of businesses engaged in the 457 programme involves training Australians for the entire time they are approved as a standard business sponsor (SBS) and employ 457 visa holders.

What is the training commitment?

Australian businesses sponsoring 457 visa holders must meet at least one of the following training benchmarks:

  • expenditure of at least 2 per cent of the payroll of the business, in payments allocated to an industry training fund that operates in the same industry as the business, or
  • expenditure of at least 1 per cent of the payroll of the business, in the provision of training to Australian employees of the business.

Businesses are required to continue to meet one of these benchmarks for as long as they employ a 457 visa holder and are approved as a sponsor.

What happens if a business doesn’t meet the benchmarks?

The DIBP regularly checks businesses that sponsor 457 visa holders to make sure they are complying with all of the sponsorship obligations, including meeting one of the training benchmarks. If during these checks they become aware they have not fully met the training requirement they have a range of options available, including:

  • issuing a formal warning
  • barring the business for up to five years from sponsoring overseas workers
  • cancelling the business’ sponsorship
  • issuing an infringement notice to a maximum value of $10 200
  • entering into an enforceable undertaking (a court-enforceable undertaking between the minister and sponsor) applying for a civil penalty order with a maximum penalty of $51 000.

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