Sponsorship Obligation – What do organisations that hold a sponsor licence in Australia need to do if a Skilled Worker resigns?
Responsibility for sponsored workers starts from the day a Temporary Skill Shortage visa (TSS) (subclass 482) or the Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) (SESR) visa (subclass 494) work visa Australia is approved under the sponsorship of the employer.
Responsibility ends in accordance with the end date for employment (as stated on the visa grant letter), but it can end earlier if, for example, a worker resigns from their role. In such circumstances,the sponsorship obligation and responsibility for the worker will end when the Department of Home Affairs is notified that the sponsoring organisation is no longer sponsoring the individual and the visa holder has ceased employment with the business.
Sponsors have 28 working days from the date of cessation of employment to report the change to the Department of Home Affairs. Note that this duty arises only upon the employee’s actual departure from the business – usually the end of a notice period.
Failure to report a resignation for a work visa Australia holder is a breach of sponsorship obligation. If the Home Affairs were to conduct a compliance check and become aware of the breach, they could suspend a sponsor licence while they undertake an investigation and consider whether to revoke the sponsorship, they could revoke the sponsor licence without suspension in the most serious cases, or they could impose extremely high penalties, such as:
- issue an infringement notice of up to:
AUD1,332 for individuals and AUD6,660 for bodies corporate per obligation breach for a first notice
AUD2,664 for individuals and AUD13,320 for bodies corporate per obligation breach for subsequent notices
- apply to a court for a civil penalty order of up to AUD66,000 for a corporation and AUD13,320 for an individual for each failure.
Those who hold a sponsorship and have been approved as standard business sponsors must follow extensive reporting and record-keeping duties, in addition to ensuring that immigration laws and wider Australian laws are met. this is to avoid any breach of the sponsorship obligations.
If you would like to speak to one of our immigration experts about your sponsorship duties or recruiting skilled workers under the work visa Australia program, call us now on +61 7 3040 8444 or complete our online enquiry form.