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Sanctions imposed on sponsors of skilled foreign workers

 

​​Visas and sponsorship

Sponsor sanctions

A sponsor who fails to meet their sponsorship obligations may face a range of possible sanctions including:

  • cancellation of their approval as a sponsor
  • being barred from sponsoring other workers
  • being barred from making future applications for approval as a sponsor
  • being issued with 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.
  • civil penalties imposed by the courts (for example, up to AUD66,600 for a corporation and AUD1​3,320 for an individual for each failure)
  • Enforceable Undertaking between the sponsor and the Department of Home Affairs / Australian Border Force.

More than one sanction can be imposed.

To pay an infringement notice you can use the Westpac online payment facility or BPAY. For further information, see ​​​​​​Paying ​an employer or sponsor infringement notice​​​.

Publishing sanctioned sponsors

In accordance with section 140K of the Migration Act 1958, the Minister must publish the details of sanctioned sponsors.

Section 140K states in part:

  • (4)  The Minister must, subject to subsection (7), publish the information (including personal information) prescribed by the regulations if an action is taken under this section in relation to an approved sponsor or former approved sponsor who fails to satisfy an applicable sponsorship obligation.
  • (5)  The Minister is not required to observe any requirements of the natural justice hearing rule in publishing information under subsection (4).
  • (6)  No civil liability arises from action taken by the Minister in good faith in publishing information under subsection (4).
  • (7)  The regulations may prescribe circumstances in which the Minister is not required to publish information under subsection (4).

Paying for visa sponsorship

It is against the law for a sponsor or any other person to ask for or receive a benefit in exchange for visa sponsorship. It is also against the law for you, or any other person to offer or provide a benefit in exchange for visa sponsorship. Sponsors or visa holders can face civil and criminal penalties.

Recovering costs

Sponsors cannot request visa holders to cover costs associated with gaining a sponsorship or nomination, including the associated migration agent costs, or the Skilling Australians Fund levy.

Cancelling visas

Sponsors cannot cancel visas. Only the Department of Home Affairs and the Australian Border Force can cancel visas.

See our Disclaimer.