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I’ve left my employer, what does this mean for my TSS visa?

By January 26, 2020October 10th, 202158 Comments

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There are a number of reasons for employees to leave their employers, both voluntarily and non-voluntarily. For individuals on Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) Subclass 482 visas, there is an additional layer of complexity due to certain visa conditions applicable.

In the backdrop of German retailer Kaufland’s withdrawal from Australia, we discuss the general implications of a TSS visa holder leaving their employment, and what options may be available to them.

What visa conditions are applicable to me?

All TSS visa holders are subject to condition 8607 which, amongst other things, requires the visa holder to:

  • not cease employment for over 60 consecutive days;
  • work only in a position in the nominating employer’s business (or an associated entity) – unless one of limited exempt occupations.

What happens when I leave my employer?

Once a TSS visa holder ceases employment with their sponsoring employer, the sponsoring employer has an obligation to notify the Department of Home Affairs (Department) of that individual’s cessation.

After the 60-day period, the visa holder would be in breach of condition 8607.

What happens if I breach my visa conditions?

In circumstances where an individual is in breach of their visa conditions, their visa is liable to cancellation.

Typically, when the visa holder is in Australia, the Department would first contact the individual to advise them that they are considering cancelling their visa. Where an individual is outside Australia, the Department may cancel their visa without notice.

Does this mean that I should leave Australia within 60 days of ceasing employment?

Not necessarily.

Where a TSS visa holder can find another employer that is willing to sponsor them, the new employer is able to lodge a TSS “nomination transfer” to transfer the sponsorship of their visa to their business. This would enable the visa holder to not be in breach of their visa conditions.

Where a TSS visa holder is unable to find another employer that is willing to sponsor them, they would need to either:

  • depart Australia;
  • apply for another visa; or
  • risk breaching their visa conditions (and having their TSS visa liable for cancellation).

Although the Department do not necessarily always contact an individual immediately after the 60 days permitted by the TSS visa to arrange for cancellation, a failure to comply with visa conditions may be considered as part of future visa applications.

What other visas can I apply for?

This depends on your personal circumstances and your options can vary greatly.  We recommend that you speak to a professional to assess what options may be most suitable for you.

In the first instance, feel free to review our services page to read more about the available options.

Next Steps

Hannan Tew Lawyers have advised both businesses and individuals in relation to the cessation of employment of TSS visa holders.

Hannan Tew have advised businesses who have had to let staff/employees go by way of poor performance, or in situations where overseas businesses have closed their entire Australian operations and made staff redundant.  Hannan Tew have also advised countless individuals who have left their former employers on visa pathways and planning.

The most suitable pathway is individual and circumstance specific and you should consult with a professional about what may be the best options for you.

If you’re an individual who has recently left their employer, please feel free to contact us by email at [email protected] or phone +61 3 9016 0484 for a discussion.

THIS DOCUMENT DOES NOT CONSTITUTE LEGAL ADVICE OR CREATE AN ATTORNEY-CLIENT RELATIONSHIP. PLEASE CONSULT AN IMMIGRATION PROFESSIONAL FOR UP TO DATE INFORMATION.
Jordan Tew

Author Jordan Tew

Jordan is one of less than 50 lawyers who are Accredited Specialists in Immigration Law by the Law Institute of Victoria, and less than 100 nationally. Accredited Specialists undergo a vigorous assessment process, and make up about 1% of all registered migration agents.

More posts by Jordan Tew

Join the discussion 58 Comments

  • ronilo villsarosa says:

    my visa is Tss 482 midstream , im 49year old , I have 24months working to my previous Company in Perth now Im leaving here in Melbourne Victoria , my wife is 44yrs old, my daughter is 7 and 3 . I want to apply for PR , what option would you recommend to me or any visa for me .

    thanks.

    • admin says:

      Hi Ronilo,
      Your age is a challenge but the easiest way to PR might be for you to find a new sponsor and work with them for 3 years at above the FWHIT.
      Feel free to contact us at [email protected] to discuss your situation in more detail.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Sonali Vaidya says:

    I am on the verge of changing employer, I have got a new sponsor but they are in the process of labour market testing. What happens if I resign and sit home until the transfer of nomination comes through? Will that be a breach?

    • admin says:

      Hi Sonali,
      Once you have ceased work you ordinarily have 60 days in which to find a new sponsor. You can stay home during this time, but you can’t work for any other employer.
      Ideally your new nomination is approved before that 60 day period, and once it does, you can commence work with your new employer. If it doesn’t, you would technically be in breach, but pragmatically the Department is unlikely to take steps to cancel your visa if they can see a nomination transfer is being processed.
      Let us know if you require our assistance, otherwise good luck!
      Hannan Tew

  • Jay says:

    Hello I need to go back to my county so I resign my job and I was 482 visa holder just yesterday company canceled the visa. I was chef role in 482 visa and head chef undetstand my current situation. However he needs to me work 2 more weeks. My visa has been canceled and I received email that I can stay in Australia for 60 days. Within 60 days can I still legally work?

    • admin says:

      Hi Jay,
      If your visa was cancelled you’d usually be on a Bridging Visa E without work rights.
      If its just a case that your employer has notified the Department of a cessation date, the situation might be different (your employer could write to the Department to advise that the situation is a different date).
      Feel free to contact us at [email protected] if you’d like to discuss further.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Elizabeth says:

    Hi. I am currently on a 482 visa and have my husband as a dependent. I would like to cancel my current visa, if I do so what other visa me and my husband can apply for without leaving the country? And Just to make sure that all the cost that we spend on my 482 visa will not be refunded is that correct?

    • admin says:

      Hi Elizabeth,
      There are many visas you can apply for onshore depending on your particular circumstances (see here).
      If you seek to stay for a short time, the most likely ones are the Visitor or Subclass 408 (COVID-pandemic stream) visas.
      The cost you spent on your 482 visa is also unlikely to be refunded.
      Feel free to contact one of our lawyers at [email protected] if you’d like to discuss further.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Paula says:

    Hi, I have the 482 visa medium term (4 years), If I change employer, does the 03-year period to apply for the PR start again from 0 or continue from where it was?

    • admin says:

      Hi Paula,
      Thanks for reaching out.
      If you move to a new employer, your 3 year eligibility under the Temporary Residence Transition Stream restarts. However, you can still apply for PR directly through Direct Entry (if you have a skills assessment and an overall 3 years of experience).
      Feel free to contact us at [email protected] if you’d like our assistance.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Sam says:

    Dear Hannan

    Thank you for a very insightful post. I’m hoping you would be able to give guidance on my current situation.

    I’m on a TSS 482 which will expire 8 January 2022. My Australian de factor partner and I will submit an application for the 820/801 partner visa within a few weeks.
    I really want to leave my current employer due to workplace issues. I’m considering handing in my resignation on Friday 15 October 2020. With 30 days notice for my resignation + 60 days period by the Department (total of 90 days) this will then take me to the 13 January 2022 and past when my 482 would naturally expire.

    My question is therefore: do you see any issues with me resigning before my tss expires? My concern is whether there is a bridging visa I will be granted until the 820 is processed – and whether this bridging visa would make me in breach of the original work requirements of the TSS to remain working for my sponsored employer?

    Thank you in advance for your reply.

    All the best,
    Sam

    • admin says:

      Hi Sam,
      Thanks for reaching out. Assuming you lodge your Partner visa prior to your visa expiry, those dates check out.
      The main thing to look out for is that you don’t cease work for more than 60 days whilst holding a TSS visa. On 9 January you’ll move onto the BVA which will have unrestricted work rights.
      Feel free to email us at [email protected] if you have any other questions.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Anupama says:

    Dear Hannan,

    Thank you for the useful post.

    I am currently on a 482 visa (Medium Term) which expires in July 2022. I wanted to change the employer due to better career opportunities with another new employer. Furthermore, I was offered a new post with a new employer, and they had lodged a nomination for a different post. As I was advised that it will just be a nomination transfer, I had resigned from my previous employer to join the new employer. However, I got to know that I have to apply for a whole new visa, as it is for a different post after resigning. I have already submitted my new visa application, and it has been about 45 days since I have left my previous nominating employer. Given the current situation of COVID restrictions, I cannot arrange visa health assessment immediately. Due to this, it is highly unlikely that my new visa application will get finalised within the given 60-day period. I was granted a bridging visa, which will become active only after July 2022.

    If my visa application does not get processed within 60 days of me ceasing employment with my previous nominating employer, does this mean I have breached condition 8607?

    I would appreciate if you could advise me to regard this. Thank you.

    • admin says:

      Hi Anupama,
      Yes, technically if you don’t get your new visa approved within the 60 day period you will have breached the “must not cease work” condition.
      However, the standard practice is that before any cancellation the Department would write to you without a “Notice of Intention to Consider Cancellation” where you could provide an explanation as to why your visa should not be cancelled (including that you have found a new employer and delays are due to the visa process).
      Feel free to email us at [email protected] if you would require specific advice.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Dylan says:

    Hi i want to resign from the company and go home to my country i havent taken leave for two years.Will they pay me my leave and more if i resign.Thank u.

    • admin says:

      Hi Dylan,
      Your leave entitlements depend on your contract so you should check that.
      From an immigration point of view, once you cease working your employer will notify the Department and they will take steps to cancel your visa.
      Feel free to contact us at [email protected] if you have specific questions.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Carlos says:

    after 11 months of waiting Grant my visa last january 9, 2019 while offshore but my employer suddenly change mind saying my spot has been replaced so they can no longer hire me until now im still here i my country then i found a new employer after almost three years past do you think i can still use my visa i still have 13 months on my visa left..if ever they lodge my new nomination is there gonna be a conflict on that? Thanks

    • admin says:

      Hi Carlos,
      It’s likely that your old visa from 2019 was cancelled by now (you should do a VEVO check to determine).
      If not, you may be able to lodge a new nomination if you have found a new employer since you never commenced work with your last employer.
      Feel free to contact us at [email protected] if you’d like to discuss further.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Mercy sims says:

    Hi, I hold a DAMA VISA 482 under labour agreement as a childcare worker. I am not happy with my current employer and want to transfer to another employer that just got their 482 labour agreement approved. How is the processing done? Do I need to apply for another visa or I just need to do the nomination? Kindly advise
    Reply

  • Paige says:

    Hi, looking for an answer re: travelling overseas while a visa is being transferred from one employer to another. I’m on a 482 and the border just opened so hoping to go home for Christmas. However, the earliest my new employer could apply for the transfer would be after labour market testing on 17 December (and I’d finish up at my current employer on that same day – planning to fly out on the 18th). Is it okay to be away while the visa is under review? I know I have 60 days to find a new employer once I resign, but can I be overseas in that time? I started on a 457 in 2017, then to a 482 in 2019 and have just renewed the 482 in October this year. Thanks!

    • admin says:

      Hi Paige,
      It is okay for you to be overseas during the nomination transfer application but risky.
      This is because if there are delays to processing and you are overseas, the Department could technically cancel your visa after the 60 day period.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

    • Mercy sims says:

      Hi, I just want to find out a few things. I am currently on 482 visa and wanting to change employers. Have worked with the current employer for 2 years and have done 1 year plus on my visa. How much notice do I need to give them before moving yo another employer?

      • admin says:

        Hi Mercy,
        Your notice period is set out in your employment contract (not in your visa).
        Let us know if you’d like our assistance with the visa transfer.
        Kind regards,
        Hannan Tew

  • Maurice says:

    Hey,

    I’m on a 482 visa but unfortunately I was sponsored under a different profession to my qualifications / experience and I can’t get PR as soon as I’d like because my experience doesn’t count under my nominated profession.

    I also wish to change employer.

    What is the easiest way to get PR as quickly as possible while changing employer?

    Also, is there an interim visa (maybe a student visa or something) that I could get to give myself more time than the 60 days?

    Thanks,

    Maurice

  • Chen says:

    Hi,

    I’m an Australian Citizen, my partner is currently on 482 Visa, He wants to resign to his current Job due to irregular schedule, work location, and job description issue. We would like to know if we can apply for a partner visa 820/801 and if He will resign to his current job considering still having a 482 visa which will be expired on march 2023, . Whats the best option we can do. if He resign to his current job, and if he’ll hold a BVA visa (partner visa) and current 482 as above expiration. Can he find another job? while on this situation.

    • admin says:

      Hi Chen,
      Thanks for reaching out.
      Even if your partner lodges a Partner visa they will still be holding a 482 which means that they should continue working with their former employer (until the BVA comes into effect in 2023).
      The best option might be to find a new employer and undertake a nomination transfer first.
      Feel free to contact us at [email protected] if you’d like to discuss further.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Simon says:

    Hi there,

    I left my employer over 10 days ago (in fact over 30 days ago), yet they haven’t contacted immigration as my 482 visa status says I am still with them. This means I cannot apply for a new visa as I am technically still sponsored with them. Should I contact immigration myself? I thought it was the employers responsibilitiy. I am still in Australia.

    • admin says:

      Hi Simon,
      There’s nothing stopping you from applying for a new visa (even if you are sponsored with your old employer).
      An employers obligations and a visa holders obligations are different – yours is just to comply with your conditions (which among other things, currently is likely to include a condition to not cease work for more than 60 days or work for an employer that is not your sponsor). If you find a sponsor you can usually transfer over to them.
      Feel free to contact us at [email protected] for further information.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • San says:

    Dear Hannan,

    Thank you for the insightful post.
    My partner was on a 482 visa for last 4 years and he finished his sponsorship on 20th of November. After that we applied for a covid visa which is on a bridging visa as I have to undergo a medical examination which is not due till Feb 12 2022.
    Although his employer referred him for the covid visa, now he is not willing to take him back to work as he finished his employment with them.
    And it would be more than 60 days till my heath assessment date. What are the possible options we could go through at this time?

    Please advise and thank you for your time.

    • admin says:

      Hi San,
      We’d need to review your situation in more detail, but if there is no longer a valid TSS visa in place the sponsor might not have an obligation to employ your partner. Your partner’s current visa obligations are also likely to be different (set out on any bridging visa grant they have).
      Feel free to contact us at [email protected] with further information if you’d like more specific advice.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • SD says:

    Dear Hannan, I am currently on 482 TSS but have found another employer willing to sponsor under 186 ENS. Could you let me know how soon should I be informing my current employer about this change. Should it be after the Visa nomination is approved? Technically I need to cease employment once the 186 is granted, but I also need to provide a 6 week notice to my current employer. Looking forward to your advice.

    Thanks

    • admin says:

      Hi SD,
      Once you have your 186 ENS visa it no longer has Condition 8607 (which was the condition about continuing work with your former employer).
      From an immigration point of view, you will have no more obligations to the earlier employer. You might want to check your employment law obligations with an employment lawyer, however.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Rayne Leandro says:

    Hello,

    Hopefully you can help me. I was on a TSS medium stream due to expire 2024 and have left my employer. I have applied for a student visa and been granted a bridging visa A with work limitations 8607. my question is what will happen after the 60 days of having left my employer? Will I be able to work for a new employer while my student visa is awaiting grant? As my TSS visa will technically be invalid?

    • admin says:

      Hi Rayne,
      Though you’ve been granted a Bridging Visa A, you technically still hold a TSS visa until it is cancelled (or the new Student visa comes into effect).
      This means you don’t yet have permission to work with a new employer.
      It can be complicated, so feel free to email us at [email protected] to discuss further.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Nandha says:

    I am on TSS 482 visa and planning to resign on April 1st 2022 and relocate to another country. My spouse is also working here in Australia with TSS 482 Dependent visa (Unlimited work rights). Can she work till April 30th 2022 even though, I have (Primary TSS 482 applicant) left the job on April 1st 2022 because she wanted for work here till end of April 2022.

    • admin says:

      Hi Nandha,
      Yes, generally speaking your visa won’t be cancelled until at least 60 days from when you cease employment.
      During this time, your spouse will retain their unrestricted work rights.
      Good luck,
      Hannan Tew

  • satty says:

    Hi Hannan,

    I am on TSS 482 visa and I find new employer who is sponsoring my visa transfer, but I want to understand some things about my notice period.

    On my deputation and on deputation letter provided by my employer when I was in India saying 90 days notice period mentioned if I will put termination, I am very confuse as we know that only 30 days Australian law says to serve notice period and even market only entertain employee with 30 days notice period.

    so once visa transfer completes by new employer should current employer force me to serve 90 days notice or they can force me to go back my country.

    FYI -I already started visa process as current company saying only 30 days notice you need to serve if you employed in Australia kindly suggest me and guide me.

    • admin says:

      Hi Satty,
      From an immigration point of view, once a new nomination is approved by a new sponsor, your visa condition is that you must only work with that new sponsor. However, the regulations hold that you can continue working with your previous sponsor to fulfil a requirement to give notice of termination of employment under industrial relations law. You therefore need to speak to an employment lawyer to review your notice period and determine whether it is valid within industrial relations law.
      Sorry we can’t be of more assistance, but feel free to email us at [email protected] if you’d like us to refer you to an employment lawyer.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • katherine says:

    Hi there, I am on a 482 visa which expires in July 2022. I will cease employment with my current company on 1 April 2022 and then will leave Australia permanently before the 60 day period ends (leave permanently before the end of May). I wanted to know if I would be allowed to leave and re-enter Australia on my 482 visa during the 60 day period where I am not employed (between April-May)?

    • admin says:

      Hi Katherine,
      Yes, that’s right, as 482 visa holders are currently exempt from travel restrictions, you should be able to enter and exit within that 60 days of cessation period.
      Just be aware that any point after that, the Department may take steps to cancel your visa.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • I Made Budiarta says:

    Hi there,i am on 482 visa wich expires in march 2023, i would like to go to my country and stay there for 4 months, how long i can stay at my country?

    • admin says:

      Hi Budiarta,
      It depends. As TSS visas enable multiple entry to Australia, visa holders who spend periods outside Australia are not considered to have ceased employment solely because they are or have been absent from Australia. If a visa holder spends significant periods outside Australia, they and their sponsor should, however, be counselled regarding the continued need for the TSS visa and whether it is the appropriate visa for their circumstances. Provided the visa holder has not ceased employment and there are reasonable grounds for the visa holder to be regularly absent from Australia, the visa holder will not be considered to be in breach of condition 8607.
      Feel free to contact us at [email protected] for more detailed advice.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Seb says:

    Dear Hannan

    Thank you for your post. Maybe you can give guidance on my current situation.

    I’m on a TSS 482 which will expire 14 Feb 2022. My partner and I submitted an application for a 482 visa 3months ago (Oct 2021).
    Our bridging visa that will start on the 14th Feb (where I’ll be partner), still has the 8607 condition.
    For what I understand, if I left my current employer (or they fired me), I wouldn’t be able to work for another one until my partner’s 482 visa is approved.

    Is that correct?
    Is it possible to ask for a waiver of the 8607 condition in this case, where I am already on a bridging visa, waiting for my partner’s visa being granted?

    Thank you in advance for your reply.
    All the best,

    • admin says:

      Hi Seb,
      Unfortunately what you’ve outlined is correct, as your BVA will be subject to condition 8607 you are not able to work for another employer until your partner’s TSS visa is approved (after which as a dependent you would have unrestricted work rights). There are also no provisions to waive this either. Best of luck!
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Shaun morgan says:

    Hello I am on a tts visa for 4 years as a mental health nurse I understand that I have a option of extending that for another 4 years once that is up . If I transfer to another job dose that mean I can’t extend for another 4 years or can I transfer as many times as I want and it will not effect the times of the visa

    • admin says:

      Hi Shaun,
      Thanks for reaching out. As long as your occupation is on the MLTSSL (here) and you have an employer willing to sponsor you, you can continue to get 4 year TSS visas, including with different employers.
      Feel free to get in touch with us at [email protected] if you’d like to discuss.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • CT says:

    Hi there,

    Really appreciate the detail here. I am currently on a 482 visa as a Corporate General Manager (ANZSCO 111211) — for which I understand some exemptions apply (although I’m not completely clear how that works!). It is not set to expire until July 2024.

    I’m currently contemplating leaving my employer and potentially taking an extended break. Ideally however, I would like to be able to stay in Australia. My partner is a citizen (imminent at least, just waiting for his ceremony) and so we have been considering applying for a partner visa. Without applying for a new job (as I am looking for a break of maybe more than 60 days) and transferring my 482, would that be possible at all? What would be the best way to get on a bridging visa with unrestricted work rights prior to a partner visa being granted? I know getting the partner visa may take a while so at some point would like flexibility in work — I just don’t necessarily want to rush it in 60 days!

    Would really appreciate any insight!

    • admin says:

      Hi CT,
      Thanks for reaching out.
      As your husband is already a permanent resident (almost a citizen) you may already be eligible for a Partner visa.
      The challenge is that you won’t get a bridging visa in your current situation until July 2024 and you still have a condition to not cease working with your employer for more than 60 days.
      One work around is to move onto another visa, and then apply for a Partner visa.
      Feel free to contact us at [email protected] to discuss.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Kween says:

    I’m holding TSS482 and BVA 491 not active.I am wondering to leave my current employee. Will my BVA become active when they withdraw 482 sponsorship ?

    • admin says:

      Hi Kween,
      The BVA is actually attached to your new visa application (assuming it’s the 491) and comes into activation when your old visa (assuming its the 482) ceases.
      Withdrawing a sponsorship can be problematic because it can lead to a visa refusal (and loss of the associated BVA).
      Feel free to contact us at [email protected] to discuss further.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • Daisy says:

    Can a not for profit organisation become a sponsor?

  • Kashif says:

    Hi,

    My TSS 482 Visa long term 3 years was granted in March 2020 but I couldn’t travel to Australia due to covid lockdown. I kept working for the employer remotely till March 2022 not on an australian paycheck, but on Indian Salary as an employee of the Branch of company in India. Post that I travlled in March 2023 here and working for my employer on Australia salary. I have an overall experience of 9 years in India and currently my Visa is on SOL list. My question is, I would complete 3 years visa next year in March 2023, Can I ask my sponsor to nominate me for 186 employer nomination scheme although I have worked in Australia only a year?

    • admin says:

      Hi Kashif,
      Firstly, based on your description of salary, it seems like you did not start the position until March 2022 (or if you did, you would have been underpaid according to your TSS visa) so your TRTS eligibility could not start until that date.
      Secondly, if your occupation is on the STSOL (and you don’t meet an exemption here) you are not going to be eligible for the 186 visa.
      Feel free to contact us at [email protected] if you’d like us to assess this in detail.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

  • John says:

    Hi Hnnan,
    I will be thankful for your kind response. I am here with my family on 482 visa. I want to go back for some reason but want my family to live here for next few months so they can complete their study at least till the end of this academic year. Is there any leave without pay/other option, so that I am outside of au but family can live lawfully. If is there any option then how long they can live. Thanks again.

    • admin says:

      Hi John,
      Under policy, TSS visa holders on unpaid leave (e.g.: study or sabbatical leave; recreational or holiday leave without pay; sick leave without pay; maternity and/or paternity leave and/or parental/carer/personal leave), are not considered to be in breach of condition 8607 solely on the basis of this unpaid leave. This is because these visa holders may be considered to continue to be in the employ of the sponsor (although not working or receiving a salary). However, this period should not generally exceed 3 months. Just note that your employer must be clear that the period is leave without pay (and not terminate your employment).
      It can be complex, so feel free to email us at [email protected] if you’d like to discuss further.
      Kind regards,
      Hannan Tew

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