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DIBP are refusing 457 SBS, nominations and 457s for any reason 

The Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) are doing their utmost best to refuse any component of the 457 application process, but most of all, 457 nominations.

Example of a large supermarket refusal

A large supermarket with more than 20 staff in a regional area is trying to sponsor a marketing specialist.  The DIBP have refused the application on the basis that the salary offered is too low, at $55,000.  However the market salary rates show $50K-$60K and TSMIT is $53,000.  And yet the DIBP are still saying that $55,000 is too low and have refused the application without giving a chance for the sponsor to increase the salary.  The sponsor is more than happy to increase the salary to whatever the DIBP want it to be as they need the person badly.  See the end of this article for the interesting salary offered to ACS ICT case assessors in Sydney city.  Proceed to roll your eyes.

Refusal on ‘Genuineness’ Criteria 

Now let’s look at the ‘genuineness’ criteria. The DIBP have for a while ‘deemed’ that a position is not necessary for the operation of a business and is hence, not a genuine position.   Don’t you just love the word ‘deem’ in the context of a case officer and their decisions?

Take the example case of Mr S.   Mr S is a man who has given up a career in his home country and moved to Australia on a 457 visa in around 2009.   Mr S qualified for permanent residency (PR) to Australia but the business Mr S was sponsored by was taken over by another company with a different ABN. The PR application could therefore not be lodged.   Mr S originally started on his 457 as a project and programme administrator, but now to obtain a new 457 visa for the same job at the second company, he needs to undergo a skills assessment for the position of project and programme administrator (the position he currently holds and has held since 2009).  Mr S holds a bachelors degree in nursing from Indonesia.

Refusal due to PAMS conflicting with ANZSCO

On closer inspection, there is a discrepancy between the skills assessment requirement (qualification plus work experience) and ANZSCO requirement. ANZSCO states that only work experience is required, and not necessarily  a qualification.

In the case of Mr S, the DIBP case officer inflexibly applied PAMS.  Whoever created this rule in PAMs is probably referred to as the ‘PAM GOD’ within the DIBP, such is the size of the brick wall for applicants and their sponsors.  Registered Migration Agents are getting to the point where they just tell clients that applying is like gambling and say, ‘do you want to go ahead or not?’

Refusal based on ‘Training Receipts’

In relation to the Standard Business Sponsorship (SBS) it is interesting that refusals are coming through saying there is no evidence that the training receipt provided has been used to train Australians, even though the company structure chart shows that all employees are Australian citizens.  This was previously not happening.

Refusal because a ‘Small Business’

It seems that DIBP are prone to refusing small businesses. The DIBP case officers automatically assume that the small business owner should do the job themselves and do not need the employee or any managerial position.  Typical refusals for small businesses are in the occupations of Customer Service Manager, Facilities Manager, Retail Buyer and other Managerial positions.  DIBP case officers, with all their business management experience in the real world (cough) assume that the business owners can carry out these functions on their own, and hence refuse the applications.

Think about the feeling of a small business owner if they are forced to do the work themselves instead of expanding the business do do other upper-level development on their business.  All because a DIBP case officer says they should be able to.  Case officers are now deciding for small business owners who and what they need to run their businesses, stifling business owners and preventing optimum growth.

Refusals since the DIBP’s name change to ‘Border Force’

Agents are reporting that since the DIBP changed it’s name to Border Force, their refusal rates are up as high as 80%.  Migration Agents, do not lose heart.  There is now a pattern of refusals that cannot be ignored.  This blog post serves as a line in the sand and trumpet sound that something is going on in there.   The legislation remains the same but the way the DIBP handle and decide assessments is at a completely different level now.

Refusals because of a disjointed assessment process

The process is now disjointed and haphazard within the DIBP.

First, 457 applications now go through initial division will have one case officer look at it and send a request for further information whenever they are not satisfied.   The requested documents and extra information are then attached online by the RMA.

The application then moves back to the queue and is then allocated to a different case officer who will then make a decision on the information in front of them.  The trend now is that the second case officer makes the decision without asking for any additional information.

The following is a typical example of the disjointed assessment process:

The first case officer asks for extra documents A C and F.

The second case officer refuses the application because B, D and E do not satisfy them.

The fact that the first case officer did not ask for B, D and E along with their request for A, C and F deprives the sponsor / applicant of the opportunity to provide what is actually needed.  The second case officer requests nothing and therefore deprives the sponsor / applicant of chance to have their application/s fairly assessed.

I call this ‘case officers working in silos’.

DIBP case officers refusing cases like street rangers fine cars

DIBP are now acting like street rangers who must book and fine a target number of cars per day.  The more you fine the more rewarded you are.

The greater scrutiny of 457 visa applications is leading to a fall in grants.  Red tape has gone mad, with 457 applications even voided because of typos and spelling errors.

DIBP decisions are hypocritical

It is interesting to note that a full time ‘Case Assessor – ICT skills assessment’ position at the Australian Computer Society in Sydney city (non-regional) is being advertised on SEEK.com at $45,000.  If that is not a kick in the teeth then what is?  I rest my case.

My crystal ball prediction

If this continues, people desperate to stay will have no other option but to become unlawful because it is all too hard.  Either that or other subclasses of visa will be rorted so that they can stay in Australia.  No wonder 62,000 foreigners are now living in Australia without any visas.