9.4.3.30 Assurer eligibility requirements – corporations and state agencies

Requirements for corporations

If a corporation wishes to provide an AoS, it must be incorporated in Australia (within the meaning of the Corporations Act 2001) and intend to remain incorporated in Australia while any AoS given by the corporation remains in force.

When assessing the AoS, the Secretary (or their delegate) must be satisfied that the corporation has not been set up for the sole purpose of providing an AoS. In most circumstances, a corporation should provide reliable and verifiable evidence (e.g. tax returns, correspondence from a registered accountant, statement from ASIC) of consistent trading activity for at least 2 financial or calendar years prior to the date of AoS application. If the corporation is set up immediately prior to the AoS application and/or the corporation has not been consistently trading or is not trading, the AoS will not usually be accepted.

An AoS that is given by a corporation must be signed on behalf of the corporation by a person who is duly authorised in writing to sign the AoS such as a Director of a Company or a committee member of an association.

A corporation must not give an AoS jointly with another body, State agency or individual.

Act reference: SSAct Chapter 2C Assurance of support, Part 2C.4 Determinations

Social Security (Assurances of Support) Determination 2018

Financial capacity

Unlike individuals, corporations are not required to meet the income requirements. However, the Secretary (or their delegate) must be satisfied the corporation has the capacity to support the number of adults covered by the AoS.

To ensure a corporation has the capacity to support the adult assuree/s, the corporation as a guideline should be trading profitably at a similar level to the income required for individuals in relation to an adult assuree (9.4.3.20), in addition to any other additional in-kind resources the corporation can offer.

In most circumstances, a corporation should provide reliable and verifiable evidence (e.g. tax returns, correspondence from a registered accountant, statement from ASIC) of its profit levels for at least two financial or calendar years prior to the date of AoS application that can be used to verify the corporation has the capacity to support the assuree.

Policy reference: SS Guide 9.4.3.20 Examples – income requirements for individuals

Limit on assurees for a corporation

A corporation may not give an AoS for an adult if:

  • the corporation has previously given an assurance for 2 adults (whether in a single assurance or 2 separate assurances) and each assurance remains in force
  • the corporation has previously given an AoS for
    • one adult and that assurance remains in force, and
    • one adult for whom the Secretary has not yet accepted or rejected the assurance, or
  • the corporation has given an assurance for 2 adults (whether in a single assurance, or 2 separate assurances) and assessment of the application is pending, acceptance or rejection for either or both of those assurances.

A corporation may not give an AoS for a Community Support Programme adult if:

  • the corporation has previously given an assurance for 2 Community Support Programme adults (whether in a single assurance or 2 separate assurances) and each assurance remains in force
  • the corporation has previously given an AoS for
    • one Community Support Programme adult and that assurance remains in force, and
    • one Community Support Programme adult for whom the Secretary has not yet accepted or rejected the assurance, or
  • the corporation has given an assurance for 2 Community Support Programme adults (whether in a single assurance, or 2 separate assurances) and assessment of the application is pending, acceptance or rejection for either or both of those assurances.

The corporation may not give an AoS if it would result in more than 2 adults being assured for any non-Community Support Programme. Separately the corporation may not give an AoS if it would result in more than 2 adults being assured under the Community Support Programme.

Note: There are no restrictions on the number of children for whom a corporation may give an AoS.

Securities provided by a corporation

For visas that carry a mandatory AoS requirement, corporations are required to provide a security in the form of a bank guarantee. The value of the security will depend on the length of the assurance period. The security will be deposited in the name of the corporation.

Policy reference: SS Guide 9.4.4 AoS securities

Debts incurred by a corporation

If an assuree assured by a corporation is paid a recoverable social security payment during the AoS period, the resulting debt will be raised against the corporation as a whole.

Example – corporation

Example: Smith's Engineering Co. wishes to provide an AoS for Bettina. Bettina has applied for a visa which has a mandatory AoS for a period of 4 years. The company proves it is registered in Australia through providing its ABN and company bank account details to Services Australia. It also provides evidence it has been consistently trading for the past 2 years, with profit levels above the income required in relation to an adult assuree under the income requirements for individuals. The company provides a bank guarantee for the value of $10,000.

If Bettina is paid a recoverable social security payment during the AoS period, Services Australia will recover the resulting debt from the $10,000 bond in the first instance, with any debt above this amount recovered from Smith's Engineering Co. as a whole.

State & territory government departments & local councils

There are reduced eligibility requirements for state agencies (including state/territory agencies, departments and local councils) wishing to provide an AoS.

An AoS that is given by a state agency must be signed on behalf of the state agency by a person who is duly authorised in writing to sign the AoS.

A state agency must not give an AoS jointly with another body or individual.

The same limitations apply on the number of assurees a state agency can assure as for corporations (see above).

State agencies are not subject to income or financial capability tests and are also exempt from providing any security normally required for a mandatory AoS.

Act reference: SSAct Chapter 2C Assurance of support, Part 2C.4 Determinations

Social Security (Assurances of Support) Determination 2018

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