The contents of this article are correct as at 28 February 2014.
The ceiling on 457 Nominations has now been abolished for standard business sponsors.
On 14 February 2014, amendments were made to the regulations to remove references to 457 business sponsorships ending once the number of approved nominations (the nomination ceiling) had been reached.
Immigration policy now only refers to the end date of approval of the sponsorship as the expiry of the sponsorship approval.
Sponsorships that were approved prior to 14 February 2014 and were subject to a nomination ceiling will still cease when that ceiling is reached. If these sponsors are getting close to reaching their nomination ceiling, they can lodge a sponsorship variation application.
The regulations still require a standard business sponsor applicant to provide the number of persons that it proposes to nominate during their period of approval as a sponsor. However, this number is now indicative only.
For business sponsorships approved after 14 February 2014, the sponsor can continue to make 457 nominations even after it has reached the number of nominations indicated, until the expiry of the sponsorship approval.
Please note that the Department may still question the genuineness of any appointment, as part of assessing a nomination and visa application under the 457 scheme.
If you have any questions or require assistance with a 457 application, please feel free to contact us.