What a mess!! Caution to 457 visa holders.
I wasn't going to post my news on here but was encouraged to by another PIA member to maybe gain some support and possibly some fresh ideas. I had some really bad news a week ago and hope that someone on the forum can offer some words of wisdom or support as Wayne and I are at the point where we're not sure what to do.
We came here on a 457 visa in July this year with me being sponsored by one of the big 4 accountancy firms as an indirect tax specialist. I have over 20 years experience of VAT in the UK and this firm desperately needed someone to take the GST practice forward in Adelaide. I fitted the bill and they brought me and my family here on a 2 year contract. Indeed, they all agreed that it would take time to build the business and said they were prepared to give it 2 years to get the business off the ground. If it hadn't worked out we would have returned to the UK and it would have been worth it for 2 years. However, last Thursday they changed their minds and sent me packing. I've not been dismissed rather the contract was terminated. I have been paid until 1st January and after that we have no means of supporting ourselves other than a small amount of savings.
I have had a lawyer look at the contract and think that they can legally do what they have done. It says in the contract that either side can give a months notice.
My main concern is how they have treated us considering the discussions I had at the start of the placement, ie the 2 year period. I never really felt safe on the 457 visa although I was advised by the in-house migration people in Sydney that it was a really strong visa and the best one for us.
So, where are we now?
We reminded ourselves of the reasons we came here in the first instance and decided that we should seek out every opportunity to stay. Basically this means that we need to find another sponsor asap. This is not so easy as Wayne was in the Fire Brigade in the UK and my job isn't on the skills in demand list either. The time of year and the global financial situation aren't helping either. There was a job for an emergency services officer at Olympic dam although when he rang and spoke to HR the recruitment for that post is on hold. He does have many transferable skills ie management experience, dealing with the commumity and training etc.
I have been offered an outplacement service and we are using every contact we have gained over the last five months to seek out opportunities.
Today my former employer said that if we don't leave the country by 28th January they won't pay for our flights home to the UK if that is what we decide to do. I don't think this is correct but it still leaves us in an unclear position and we need to know where we stand legally. I'm also in discussions with them about payment of relocation costs which were built into the salary over two years and which I have only received 5 months out of 22 months and which I think they are trying to get out of paying. When I rang the legal services line I was told to hire an Immigration Lawyer which would be very expensive and at the moment we truly need to batten down the hatches. I'm trying to talk to a local independent Senator who I understand is sometimes interested in taking on "lost causes". We have also been down to Immigration and understand that we won't be chucked out of the country immediately. That's very niice to know. We also have a house to sell.
So, you can see that the whole Adelaide experiece has gone rather pear-shaped for us - just in time for Xmas. The kids have really settled well into school and have made some lovely new friends. They are thriving on the new life that we have introduced them to. How can we tell them to say goodbye to these new friends only 6 months after they did the same thing in Bolton?
I'm recording everything that happens. In a few years I may well publish my memoirs. Although in the meantime I think an interview with some of the papers may be appropriate. I'm angry that they can treat people this way and in fact we have never been treated so badly ever.
Anyway, rant over for now:cryxmas:. We'll see what next week brings and hopefully some positive news.
I would also like to say that at times like these you certainly know who your fiends are. Many people scarper at the slightest whiff of bad news but there are people who are more than willing to turn up with a hanky or two and a box of red wine! (Or do I mean a hanky and a box of wine or two?!!!)
Last edited by caz and wayne; 15-12-2008 at 10:55 PM.
Cant offer any professional advice but i have to agree the way you have been treated looks disgusting, i would follow up every avenue you have even if it does mean a call to the paper....!!!, it looks like there has been something going on behind the scenes out of your control. I wish you all the best , iam sure she wont mind but give sarah of guzzler and sas a PM she works for a very good agency in the city
i cannot offer any advice unfortunately though i just wanted to say i really hope you can work something out in order for you to stay. it wouldnt seem so bad if it were the 2 of you but when children are involved it is just that much worse.
the best of luck and i hope the new year brings good news
That is so crap, don't know about that visa to be honest, and you seem to have most of your options covered - contacting people for a new sponser and having visited immigration.
From what I understand, now you have told immigration, this company should not be allowed to sponser another employee. (doesn't help you I know)
Best of luck in sorting something out.
Originally Posted by graandjac
Sas's is already on the case!
Again can't offer any legal advise, but just wanted to say how sorry i am to hear your sad and bad news, i can't believe you have been treated so badly. It does scare me abit, as i am coming over on a 457 visa, just shows nothing is set in stone.
So sorry again, and wish you every luck in the furture for you and your family
Hope fully you'll laugh to begin with...
How hot is your hubbie? The reason I ask is that the Firies, bless them for wanting to sound like Fairies, are currently selling a calender with hot firemen from round SA in it. Maybe he can be persuaded to sign up for next year.
Seriously though, at work the other day, we had training from the Fire Education S.... Training. I can't remember the exact details although I do know the initials were FEST. Either way, it might be worth giving them a call.
Sas is a superstar. I can't give you any promises but she'll try. Presumably you have already contacted other companies as well.
As for how you've been treated, I'd be reminding them that this kind of service goes both ways. And while they are treating you like this, two can play that game. The headlines would be great, think about it, British family kicked out of Oz just before Xmas. Better still, company makes new Aussies homeless. Guess who ruined Xmas? Play with the headlines. Hell somewhere on this site is a thread about GMTV. Contact them.
Have you contacted Immigration SA? The department which is trying to promote SA as the be all and end all of places to head towards. It might be an idea to say that as your experience has been so negative, then you are currently in the process of warning other migrants through the internet and are about to call the papers etc to warn them about the dangers of being associated with SA businesses.
If you used an agent in the first place, I would also contact them. Warn them this has happened to you, you were advised that this was the safest visa, what are your options now?
Personally, I am at my best as a vengeful bitch with PMT when protecting my loved ones. I'll be the heavy you need!!!!
I am thinking of you, take care, big huggles to you xx
I was at an expo last weekend in Belfast and heard a lady from a company who take people out on 457 visas describing the visa as 'The Golden Ticket'. I was a horrified there was no mention made of the very 'temporary' nature of the visa or the fact you have 28 days to leave if they put you out of work or what happens if you don't like your employer.
They want my OH to go on this visa and yes we would be out there in a few months but I am wary of him not liking Aus as he feels he is trapped with an employer so we can say. Now I realise there are a lot of great employers offering 457 visas and if he is made redundant in the New Year (which might well happen) we would go on this - we would have to as so little work here, but we are going for the 475 and hoping to hold out til it comes through.
Also a lot of the people at the Expo didn't seem to have done much research so I thought it wasn't good that they are 'bigging up' the visa without mentioning any of the pitfalls. The like of this forum is a great source of info for checking things out.
I hope something works out for you and you get to stay, it is such a big move to have to come home after six months. Fingers crossed.
So sorry to hear about your situation, I really hope something turns up soon. Might be worth checking out, but I'm sure I read somewhere on immi.gov.au that employees in regional areas (of which the whole of SA is for immigration purposes) could be exempt from the skills test so it may be possible for your husband to plead with SA Fire Service for a sponsorship or employer nomination. Could give you a few more options if you are both looking. I think it would be worth contacting Immigration SA too, as well as DIAC, as they should have more idea of any openings in this state.
However, I'm sorry Libby, but i don't agree with your suggestion of bad-mouthing the whole of SA business, as it will achieve nothing and will only result in making a lot of other people suffer. Whilst it's terrible what is happening to Caz and Wayne, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of people on 457 visas who are treated very well, or who have successfully gone on to become permanent residents. The 457 program has been terrific, not only for the businesses concerned but also in helping a lot of people come to this country who might not otherwise been able to get in.
Carolin and Wayne,
i am so very sad for you. what a crock of; pardon the french...........and at this time of year too. Bloody hell that's bad. I hope you guys get sorted very soon; as much for the children as yourselves. Best of luck to you all.
Cara, please dont worry; the situation for nurses is, i am sure very different. So far, my experience has been positive, at work anyway, but the rest is for another story!!! suffice to say, teenager troubles.
Carolyn, i have had a few pts this week, on mat leave, who assure me the banking industry is looking for staff; it may not be your thing, but it might be worth a shot. Sorry, i cant remember which banks, or which particular field, but when i inquired for the OH, they tell me they cant get enough people in!!
To all on this visa, have a written clause for PR after 6 months, many employers will do this, if you are the right person for the job.