Australian employers looking for overseas workers urged to be vigilant

by Ray Clancy on July 17, 2015

in Jobs in Australia

Changes to visa and immigration programmes in Australia mean that companies wishing to employ workers from overseas will have to be extra vigilant in sticking to the rules.

Figures from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) shows that there has been an increase in employer sanctions. In the 2013/2014 financial year they increased to 365 compared with 217 the previous year.


Australian employers looking to hire overseas workers will have to be extra vigilant to ensure they’re not violating rules

Many would-be expats looking for work in Australia do so through company sponsored visa schemes but there has been a crackdown in recent years to make sure employers are adhering to the correct formats.

According to Michael Wall, national leader for immigration services with KPMG, an increasingly compliance focused climate means that immigration professionals will need to think beyond the visa application process and work with companies to ensure they have internal controls in place to manage these increased compliance obligations.

He pointed out that companies who are compliant and recognised to be ‘low risk’, should receive faster processing of their visa applications and face a lower administrative burden, which can in turn save on time and cost.

‘Any business employing foreign nationals are potentially at increased risk. Now is the time for these businesses to review their internal immigration controls to stand up to this increased scrutiny, while at the same time taking advantage of more streamlined visa processes,’ said Wall.

With the functions of the DIBP and the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service now integrated into the new front line operational Australian Border Force (ABF), there is likely to be a more compliance focussed regime.

The crackdown has seen the introduction of a non-fault civil penalty regime, greater criminal penalties, and extended investigative powers via the Migration Amendment (Reform to Employer Sanctions) Act 2013.

There is also greater inter-departmental cooperation on auditing and site visits with the Fair Work Ombudsman and data sharing with the ATO and other government organisations.

Wall added that KPMG’s Immigration Practice has developed a robust risk review framework to assist companies with managing their immigration compliance obligations as well as assist with any direct audit activities conducted by DIBP or the Fair Work Ombudsman.



{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Rod - VA Philippines July 18, 2015 at 4:49 am

I would like to know if somehow this would affect outsourced remote staff.


Lorraine July 23, 2015 at 5:26 am

Is someone on a 547 Visa are they able to be employed by more than 1 employer


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