NEW INSTRUMENT: 482 and 494 Visas

The instrument, departmental reference LIN 23/067, is made under the following provisions:

·           subregulation 2.72(9) of the Migration Regulations 1994 (the Regulations); and

·           subregulation 2.72C(11) of the Regulations.

The instrument amends the following:

(a)          Migration (LIN 19/048: Specification of Occupations – Subclass 482 Visa) Instrument 2019 (LIN 19/048); and

(b)          Migration (LIN 19/219: Occupations for Subclass 494 Visas) Instrument 2019 (LIN 19/219).

 The above instruments are amended in accordance with subsection 33(3) of the Acts Interpretation Act 1901 (the Acts Interpretation Act).  That subsection provides that a power to make a legislative instrument includes a power to amend or repeal that instrument in the same manner, and subject to the same conditions, as the power to make the instrument. 

  The instrument commences on 16 September 2023, and is a legislative instrument for the Legislation Act 2003 (the Legislation Act). 


Regulation 2.72 of the Regulations sets out the requirements that must be met for the approval of a nomination of a proposed occupation in relation to an applicant for or holder of a Subclass 482 (Temporary Skill Shortage) visa (Subclass 482 visa), and regulation 2.72C of the Regulations sets out requirements for a nomination in relation to an applicant for or holder of a Subclass 494 (Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional)) visa (Subclass 494 visa).

One of the requirements is that the applicant must be nominated for a proposed occupation specified in a legislative instrument (for an application for a Subclass 482 visa in the Short-term or Medium-term streams or a Subclass 494 visa in the Employer Sponsored stream) or a work agreement (for an application for a Subclass 482 or Subclass 494 visa in the Labour Agreement stream).  The Minister may further specify any matters for the purposes of determining whether the occupation applies to an identified person under subregulation 2.72(9) of the Regulations for a Subclass 482 visa and subregulation 2.72C(11) of the Regulations for a Subclass 494 visa.

 Such matters include the circumstances in which the occupation is undertaken and the circumstances in which the person is to be employed in the position (see subparagraphs 2.72(9)(d)(v) and (vi), and subparagraphs 2.72C(11)(c)(v) and (vi)).

  Under the powers mentioned above, the Minister specified in LIN 19/048 and LIN 19/219 a requirement, amongst others, that a health workforce certificate (HWC) or a health workforce exemption certificate (HWEC) from a health workforce certifier be provided when an employer nominates a person for a position in one of the following occupations: general practitioner (ANZSCO code: 253111), resident medical officer (ANZSCO code: 253112), and medical practitioner (nec) (ANZSCO code: 253999) (medical occupations).

 The HWC and HWEC requirement formed a measure introduced as part of a joint program between the Department of Health and the Department of Home Affairs.  The purpose of the program was to manage the growth of overseas trained doctors entering primary care in well-serviced major capital cities and metropolitan areas.  Given widespread shortages of doctors in Australia, the measure is no longer fit for purpose.  The Minister for Health and Aged Care and Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs have agreed to end the program, and as such the HWC and HWEC requirement is no longer required.

The purpose of this instrument is to amend LIN 19/048 and LIN 19/219 to remove the requirement for employers to provide a HWC or a HWEC for the abovementioned medical occupations.  The amendments remove all definitions and references to HWCs, HWECs and health workforce certifiers.

The amendments made by this instrument enable employers to nominate a proposed occupation in relation to a person with one of the abovementioned medical occupations who is the holder of or who has applied for a Subclass 482 visa or Subclass 494 visa without being required to provide a HWC or HWEC.

These changes remove the administrative burden for health workforce certifiers to issue certificates, and benefit employers and intending migrants by streamlining the visa assessment process.  As a result, it is expected to attract more overseas doctors to work in Australia and increase community access to doctors.

Written by Ross Ahmadzai

16 Sep, 2023

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1 Comment

  1. Paul Guan

    Got it


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