Media Statement
Australian Government Visa Reform Changes

What is changing?

On 18 April 2017, the Australian Government has announced it will abolish the Subclass 457 Visa program for foreign workers and create a new temporary visa restricted to critical skills shortages across a revised list of eligible occupations. Implementation of the new visa reform will begin immediately, with full implementation to be completed by March 2018. A summary of these changes is outlined below and effective from 19 April 2017:

  • the occupation list underpinning the sc457 visa is reduced to 435 occupations compared to the previous 651 occupations, a reduction of 216 occupations;

  • a further 59 occupations are restricted with caveats relating to work experience, regional location and occupation specific context requirements under the sc457 program;

VETASSESS continues to be an approved assessing authority for the purposes of migration, however a number of nominated occupations we previously assessed are removed as an eligible occupation under this Reform.

For a comprehensive overview of the full extent of the Australian visa reforms including the temporary employer sponsored skilled migration program, please refer to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (

What does this change mean for VETASSESS applicants?

  • If your nominated occupation isn’t affected by this reform, then you do not need to do anything. VETASSESS is continuing to process your Skills Assessment application as usual.

  • If your pending Skill Assessment application is significantly affected by this reform including removal from the list of eligible occupations, you will receive an email shortly from VETASSESS outlining the available options.

  • If you are a potential applicant waiting to lodge a Skills Assessment application through VETASSESS, please refer to the most current list of eligible occupations at It is your responsibility to ensure that you have nominated the correct occupation for the purposes of a skills assessment for the available visa category.