Pacific Labour Scheme jobs are advertised through the SEFOPE facebook page and on this website
For Timor-Leste workers: follow the SEFOPE facebook page or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Employers that wish to access the Scheme will need to be accredited as an Approved Employer by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. The Employer Self-Assessment Eligibility Checklist will help you to determine whether your business fulfils the minimum requirements of the Scheme. Employers will also need to be a Temporary Activities Sponsor with the Department of Home Affairs. Current Seasonal Worker Programme (SWP) Approved Employers can apply to join the Scheme, but will need to undergo the Scheme Approved Employer assessment process. Further questions should be directed to: email@example.com
Connecting workers, employers and training institutions; providing education on financial literacy, including banking services, remittance transfers, tax returns, and access to superannuation benefits (when their visa has ceased); accessing affordable accommodation and appropriate living arrangements for workers; facilitating the introduction of workers to their local communities, including their local diaspora communities; a 24/7 information hotline for employers and workers; and monitoring the impact of labour mobility programs, both in Australia and in Pacific countries, to improve support provided to workers.
The Scheme puts Australian job-seekers first. Employers under the Scheme must first advertise jobs in Australia and demonstrate that there are no Australian workers before accessing workers under the Scheme.
The Scheme complements the existing Seasonal Worker Programme (SWP) which, since 2012 has given more than 31,000 seasonal jobs to workers from the Pacific and Timor-Leste.
The Scheme enables citizens of partner countries to take up low and semi-skilled work opportunities in rural and regional Australia for up to three years.
The Labour Sending Unit can help you with information on claiming superannuation. Email … or go to the live chat page to request support.
You can access your superannuation once you depart Australia and your visa has ceased. If you want to access your superannuation before your visa has ceased, you will need to request your visa to be cancelled.
Further information can be found at https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/entering-and-leaving-australia/leaving-australia
You must depart Australia at the end of your seasonal work contract, and before you visa expires. If you are not able to leave Australia before your visa expires you must contact the Department as soon as possible to resolve your situation.
No. The SWP visa is to undertake seasonal work with your employer only. If you use this visa to enter Australia for any purpose other than to participate in the SWP you will be in breach of your visa conditions and your visa may be cancelled. However, it is important to know that you can only hold one visa at a time so if you are granted another type of visa while you hold your SWP visa, you SWP visa will automatically cease.
Since 5 November 2018 all SWP visa holders can work in Australia for up to 9 months. To ensure greater flexibility for employers and workers, all multi-year visas will be granted with a ‘Length of stay’ of 9 months, as visa dates cannot be changed after grant. This approach is to facilitate possible variations in seasons from one year to the next. Regardless, if the length of stay is 9 months, you should still only remain in Australia for the duration documented in your seasonal employment contract.
Single season visas are only granted for the ‘Period of stay’ aligned with the dates specified in the employment contract.
The ‘Period of stay’ is granted in line with the duration of your employment contract, which can be up to 9 months. The 8575 or 8576 condition compliments the ‘Period of stay’ that your visa was granted for and refers to the general requirements of the SWP. You must ensure that you do not stay in Australia longer than allowed by the ‘Period of stay’ on your visa.
A detailed explanation of each condition that applies to your visa is included in your visa grant notification letter. You must abide by every condition applied to your visa.
8575 – Stay limitation
8576 – Stay limitation
8303 – Activity limitation
8501 – Maintain health insurance
8503 – No further stay
8577 – Work limitation
You can check which conditions apply to your visa at any time using the Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) service. The four-digit number shown next to each condition above is used to identify each condition that applies to your visa.
To access VEVO visit https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/busi/visas-and-migration/visa-entitlement-verification-online
You can find out more about visa conditions at https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/already-have-a-visa/check-visa-details-and-conditions/see-your-visa-conditions?product=403-60#
The ‘Must not arrive after’ date prescribes the last date on which a visa holder can enter Australia. If a visa was granted on 10 January 2018 with a ‘Must not arrive after’ date of 15 May 2018, the visa holder can enter Australia as many times as needed between 10 January 2018 and 15 May 2018. Note, if a visa holder enters the day before the ‘Must not arrive after date’, they will be able to remain in Australia for the ‘Period of stay’ specified in their visa grant notification letter.
There are 2 important dates on your visa grant letter:
Must not arrive after is the last date that you can enter Australia. You will not be able to enter Australia after this date. For a single season visa this date will be set for one month after the end of your employment contract. For multi-year visa the date will be 2 or 3 years from the date your visa was granted, allowing you entry to Australia to undertake SWP employment contracts in year 2 and/or 3.
Length of stay is the period of time you can lawfully stay in Australia. This period commences on the day you arrive in Australia. ‘Length of stay’ is also referred to as ‘Period of stay’.
Example: If your length of stay is 6 months and you arrive in Australia on 1 December 2018, you must depart on or before the 1 May 2019 (6 months). If you are still in Australia on 2 May 2019, your visa will expire automatically and you will become unlawful.
Your SWP visa is granted with condition 8577. This condition means that while you are in Australia you must not work for any person other than your sponsor while you hold this visa and must not engage in other work activities. If you wish to change your SWP sponsor you will need to depart Australia and lodge a new SWP visa application offshore. There are exceptional circumstances where the Department of Jobs and Small Business (DJSB) may permit you to change sponsors while in Australia. DJSB will notify you if you can change your sponsor.
The visa ‘Period of stay’ starts on arrival. Consistent with other temporary work visas, SWP visas are granted with a ‘Length of stay’ in accordance with the duration of the employment contract. If your contract is for 4 months exactly then the period of stay on your visa will also be 4 months.
The SWP visa allows you to enter and stay in Australia for the duration of your season of work. Your visa specifies this period as a ‘Length of stay’. The ‘Length of stay’ on your visa starts when you arrive in Australia.
It is important to note, that the ‘Length of stay’ can only be granted in months. Therefore, if your employment contract duration is 5 months and 2 weeks, then your visa will be granted with a ‘Length of stay’ of 6 months. You must only stay in Australia for the period specified in your employment contract and must depart Australia at the conclusion of your work and before your visa expires.
The terms ‘Period of stay’ and ‘Length of stay’ are the same. Both state the length of time that you are allowed to stay in Australia. ‘Period of stay’ is used in VEVO while ‘Length of stay’ is used in the visa grant notification letter.
“Period of stay’ specifies the length of time you are allowed to stay in Australia upon each arrival. If your visa is granted with ‘Period of stay’ of 3 months and you arrive in Australia on 15 January 2019, you must depart Australia no later than 15 April 2019. If you are still in Australia on 16 April 2019 the visa will cease automatically which means you will become unlawful.
The validity of your SWP visa will depend on the number of seasons offered in the employment contract signed by you and your employer. If your employer offers you an employment contract for one season only, then you can only apply for a one-year (single season) visa. If you employer offers you a contract for two or three seasons then you can apply for a multi-year SWP visa that aligns with your contact.
You must meet the character requirements if you are applying for a visa. You will be asked to provide a police certificate (also called a penal clearance certificate) if you have applied to be granted a visa that allows you entry into Australia for 12 months or more for the life of the visa (this includes multi-year SWP visas) or if you have declared a serious criminal offence in your application. You will be asked to provide a police certificate from every country you have lived in, including Australia, for at least 12 months in the past 10 years.
Health examinations conducted for a grant of a temporary visa that were cleared, without any conditions attached, are valid for 12 months. This means that this cleared health examination might be reused in a further SWP visa application that is finalised within 12 months from the date your health assessment was cleared.
All visa applicants must meet minimum health requirements before they can be granted a visa.
Visa applicants from higher TB risk countries or those who declared any circumstances of special significance must undertake a health assessment if they are to be granted a visa for ‘Period of stay’ of 6 months or more.
SWP visa processing times are impacted each month by changes in visa application volumes, seasonal peaks, complex cases, and incomplete visa applications. For current processing times refer to:
Complete visa applications lodged with all supporting documents, including health and character checks if required, are processed more quickly.
It may take longer to process your visa application if you did not provide all the required documents or if additional information is required.
Your employer and the Labour Sending Unit begin your visa application as soon as your employment contract has been approved. Your job is to ensure you have provided all the required visa documents as soon as the LSU requests them.
The Visa Application Charge (VAC) for a Temporary Work (International Relations) subclass 403 visa under the Seasonal Worker Program stream (SWP visa) is currently $285. The VAC, payable per visa application, is the same for single year and multi-year visa. It is important to keep in mind that there may be additional costs associated with meeting the visa requirements, such as health examinations and obtaining police certificates.
The Australian Government funds Add-on Skills Training for seasonal workers. There is no cost to the seasonal worker or the approved employer.
Yes, the Add-on Skills Training component of the program allows seasonal workers to access basic training in First Aid, English and IT skills. These skills can help seasonal workers while on the job in Australia and when they return to their home country.
The Add-on Skills Training component of the Seasonal Worker Programme (SWP), previously administered by the Department of Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business (formerly the Department of Jobs and Small Business), was transferred to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), effective from 1 July 2018.
Any questions regarding these arrangements can be directed through the Pacific Labour Facility (PLF) at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Employers can fill low and unskilled seasonal vacancies in:
Please visit “Jobs for seasonal workers” to learn more about what work these industries cover.
Effective from 5 November 2018, employers can employ seasonal workers from all participating countries for a maximum of nine months. Seasonal workers can work in Australia for up to nine months, but must spend three months out of every twelve in their home country.
Prior to 5 November 2018, only seasonal workers from Kiribati, Nauru and Tuvalu could be employed for a maximum period of nine months.
Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.
The Seasonal Worker Programme assists Australian employers in the agriculture sector nationwide and the accommodation sector (in selected locations) that are unable to find enough local Australian labour by providing access to workers from Pacific island countries and Timor-Leste. Seasonal workers can return in following seasons, providing employers with access to a reliable, returning workforce.
The programme contributes to the economic development of eligible Pacific island countries and Timor-Leste by providing access to low and unskilled work opportunities in Australia.