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Impact of the draft Consolidated Skills Occupation List (CSOL) on work visa

by | Apr 3, 2024 | Migration

On 26 March 2024, Jobs and Skills Australia released the draft Consolidated Skilled Occupation Released (CSOL). This list will be used as part of the work visa reforms that were flagged in Australia’s Migration Strategy.



Australia’s Migration Strategy, which was released in December 2023, outlined a once in a generation reform to the Australia’s visa system. As part of this, work visas will change from the existing system into a system with three categories. These are:

  • Specialist Skills Pathway (for highly skilled professionals with a salaries over $135,000)
  • Core Skills Pathway (for skilled workers with salaries between $70,000 – $135,000)
  • Skills in Demand Pathway (for medium and low skilled roles with salaries under $70,000).

It is envisaged that most employees using the current 482 visa program will fit into the middle pathway – the Core Skills Pathway. The draft CSOL released this week will determine which occupations are eligible for visa sponsorship by employers under the Core Skills Pathway.



The draft CSOL has been divided into 3 categories. These are:


  1. Occupation that will be on the list
  2. Occupations that will not be on the list
  3. Occupations where further community consultation is required to determine whether they will be in or off the list

Many of the occupations in category 3 (requiring further consultation) are occupations that have eligibility caveats under the current work visa systems. Some IT occupations that do not currently have caveats including ICT Business Analyst, Systems Analyst and Analyst Programmer have been flagged for community consultation.


As a first step we recommend employers review the occupations listed in each of the three categories above. These can be found here.


Occupations not on the draft CSOL

If occupations that your business sponsors, or may in the future sponsor, are on the list of occupations that will not be included in the new CSOL we recommend you review your employees and lodge work visa applications for them in the coming months.


Although no timeframe has been set down for the new visa system to be introduced, 1 July is always a favourite time for changes in immigration.


We will provide further updates as changes are announced and the draft legislation is released.


Occupations on the community consultation list

If occupations that your business sponsors, or may in the future sponsor, are on the list of occupations that have been flagged for community consultation we recommend that your provide a submission to Jobs and Skills Australia recommending the inclusion of the occupation on the new CSOL. You can complete a submission by either:


  • Completing a survey, or
  • Completing a survey questions and upload a separate submission, or
  • Uploading a separate submission only.


All submissions are due by 5pm on 10 May 2024.


Should you wish, you can also contact your professional body (eg: The Australian Computer Society for IT occupations) to see if they will be providing a submission on the proposed changes that your business can contribute to.


If you would like to discuss how your workforce may be impacted by the potential removal of occupations from the work visa system please reach out to Nevett Ford Lawyers by phone at 03 9614 7111 or by email at melbourne@nevettford.com.au. Our staff are able to assist to verify a candidate’s work rights and help with suggested visa options that may allow them to work full-time with your business.