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Sponsorship Obligations 

Understanding your obligations as an approved sponsor is crucial to avoiding sanctions being taken against your business for failing to satisfy a sponsorship obligation. With penalties ranging from warnings to cancellation of approval, sponsorship barring and even civil penalties, it makes sense to take your sponsorship obligations seriously. 

Whether it's maintaining proper records or advising the Department of Immigration of a notifiable event, we can provide your business with comprehensive support and guidance to ensure compliance with your sponsorship obligations will never be an issue. To find out how we can help protect your business call or email a member of our compliance support team. 

A Guide to Standard Business Sponsorship Obligations

The Migration Regulations set out the sponsorship obligations in detail but they can be summarised as follows:

  • Co-operate with inspectors
  • Ensure equivalent terms and conditions of employment
  • Pay travel costs to ensure sponsored persons can leave Australia
  • Pay costs incurred by the Commonwealth to locate and remove unlawful non-citizens
  • Keep records and provide these to the Minister if required
  • Provide information to the Department of Immigration when certain events occur
  • Secure an offer of a reasonable standard of accommodation
  • Ensure primary sponsored person works in nominated occupation
  • Not recover, transfer or take actions that would result in another person paying for certain costs
  • Provide training

Monitoring by the Department of Immigration

The Department of Immigration carries out routine monitoring of approved sponsors to determine whether they have complied with their sponsorship obligations. This normally involves the provision of records and documents and may also involve a site visit where employees and sponsors are interviewed.

Penalties imposed for failing to comply with sponsorship obligations

There are a number of penalties that can be imposed on sponsors, depending on the nature and seriousness of the sponsorship obligation breaches.

If a minor failure is identified then the Department will normally attempt to resolve the failure informally by for example issuing a 'reminder to comply' letter. If there has been a significant or serious failure then the Department may issue a written formal warning. This is considered to be 'adverse information' and can have an effect on future sponsorship applications. In more serious cases the Department can cancel the sponsorship approval or bar the business from applying to be approved as a sponsor in the future. Infringement notices specifying financial penalties can also be issued and in extremely serious cases civil action may be taken against the business.