Australia: 457 programme sees longer processing times

Processing times for Subclass 457 visas are averaging eight to ten weeks, a time frame that is within the advertised range but nonetheless marks a significant increase from past years.


What does the change mean? Businesses should anticipate longer-than-average processing and submit 457 petitions earlier than usual if necessary.

  • Implementation time frame: Ongoing.
  • Visas/permits affected: Subclass 457 visas.
  • Who is affected: Sponsoring employers and foreign workers in the 457 visa category.
  • Business impact: Businesses may need to adjust timelines to account for the increased processing times.
  • Background: Processing times fluctuate regularly, and the current processing times are still within the range advertised by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (two months for low-risk applications, three months for high-risk applications). Processing times have increased compared with years past, however, perhaps due in part to more complicated integrity requirements and reduced staffing levels. Accredited sponsors will continue to receive streamlined processing.

    BAL Analysis: The DIBP has indicated that processing times are not likely to improve significantly in the near future. Sponsoring employers should take note of the trend and plan accordingly.

    This alert has been provided by BAL Australia. For additional information, please contact

    MARN: 9683856

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