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Skilled Migration

Are you thinking of migrating to Australia with your current job qualifications and experience?

The Australian government welcomes visa applications from people who are both skilled and qualified, as part of their initiative to encourage economic growth and manage shortages in skilled labour.

Complete a free skills assessment or discuss your options with migration experts by contacting our dedicated 24/7 helpline.

want to move down under as a skilled migrant? contact our Australian experts for free advice


To come to Australia under the skilled migration program you need to meet some overarching requirements by:

  • Being 18 years of age but not yet 50 years old
  • Having a sound English language ability
  • Having recent skilled work experience or a recently completed and eligible Australian qualification
  • Possessing skills and qualifications for a job that’s listed on Australia’s Skilled Occupation List
  • Having a good character (that is, no substantial or serious criminal record)
  • Being free from serious diseases and agreeing to a health check

Find out more about the types of visas that fall under this program below or you can also contact our dedicated 24/7 helpline to get a free skilled migration assessment and ask any other questions you may have.

get a free assessment


skilled independent and skilled nominated visa – subclasses 189 and 190

how to qualify

You can qualify for either the Skilled Independent or Skilled Nominated permanent residence visa if you:

  • Are a points-tested skilled worker
  • Are invited to apply (after submitting an Expression of Interest)
  • Have nominated an occupation that’s on the skilled occupation list
  • Have gained a suitable skills assessment for that occupation
  • Have achieved the score that’s specified in your letter of invitation

There’s one more requirement for each of these visas, which are:

  • Skilled Independent – to not be sponsored by an employer or family member or nominated by a state/territory government
  • Skilled Nominated – to be nominated by a state/territory government

what you can do on these visas

These visas let you (and any family members who’ve also been granted the same visa):

  • Stay in Australia indefinitely
  • Work and study here
  • Access Medicare, Australia’s public health system
  • Apply for Australian citizenship
  • Sponsor eligible relatives for permanent residence
  • Travel in and out of Australia for five years after the visa is granted (at which point you’ll need a resident return visa or alternative to get back into Australia)

get a free assessment


employer nomination scheme and regional sponsored migration scheme visas – subclasses 186 and 187

how to qualify

These permanent residence visas are for people who’re looking to work in Australia. They’re processed in two stages, namely:

  • Nomination by an approved employer
  • Application under whichever of the program’s three streams that you’ve been nominated for

You can be inside or outside Australia when you apply but if you’re in the country you must hold a substantive or bridging visa.

In some cases there may be exemptions for being over the age of 50 or not meeting the skills, qualifications and language requirements of either of these visas so it’s best to talk to an expert through our dedicated 24/7 helpline to see if you’re eligible.

the difference between the subclasses

The primary difference between these two visas is whether or not you’ve been nominated by an approved employer for a job in regional or city area of Australia.

the three streams

Both of these visas are comprised of three streams, which are:

  • ‘Temporary Residence Transition’ – for subclass 457 visa holders (see below) who’ve worked for two years under that visa in the same job they’re nominated for by an employer
  • ‘Direct Entry’ – for people who’ve never or only briefly working in Australia or temporary residents who don’t qualify under the Temporary Residence Transition scheme
  • ‘Agreement’ – for people who’ve been nominated by an employer through a labour agreement

what you can do on these visas

No matter which stream you’re on, these visas let you:

  • Stay in Australia indefinitely
  • Work and study here
  • Access Medicare, Australia’s public health system
  • Apply for Australian citizenship
  • Sponsor eligible relatives for permanent residence
  • Travel in and out of Australia for five years after the visa is granted (at which point you’ll need a resident return visa or alternative to get back into Australia)

get a free assessment


skilled recognised graduate visa – subclass 476

how to qualify

This visa is especially designed for recent engineering graduates who’d like to gain up to 18 months of skilled work experience.

You might qualify for the Skilled Recognised Graduate visa if you:

  • Aren’t yet 31 years of age
  • Have completed an engineering degree at a recognised institution within the last two years

You can also be inside or outside Australia when you apply but you must be outside of Australia when the visa is decided (unless you’re a Kiwi who has a Special Category visa – subclass 444).

what you can do on this visa

This visa lets you and your family stay here for up to 18 months and:

  • Travel
  • Work
  • Enrol in further professional studies
  • Improve your English skills through study

get a free assessment


skilled regional visa – subclass 887

how to qualify

You could qualify for this permanent visa if you:

  • Are currently in Australia (both when you apply and when it’s granted)
  • Hold a Skilled Regional (Provisional), Skilled Independent Regional, Skilled Designated Area Sponsored or Skilled Regional Sponsored visas (or Bridging visa A or B from applying for an applicable visa)
  • Have lived and worked in a specified regional area of Australia for at least two years
  • Have worked full time in a specified regional area for at least one year
  • Meet the health and character requirements

what you can do on this visa

This visa lets you:

  • Stay in Australia indefinitely
  • Work and study here
  • Access Medicare, Australia’s public health system
  • Apply for Australian citizenship
  • Sponsor eligible relatives for permanent residence
  • Travel in and out of Australia for five years after the visa is granted (at which point you’ll need a resident return visa or alternative to get back into Australia)

get a free assessment


skilled regional (provisional) visa – subclass 489

how to qualify

This visa lets skilled workers (and their families) live and work in specified Australian regional areas for up to four years.

There are two pathways – ‘Invited’ and ‘Extended Stay’ – that have their own requirements, which are detailed below.

the invited pathway

To qualify for the Invited pathway you need to have:

  • Been invited to apply
  • Been nominated by a state/territory government agency or sponsored by an eligible relative who’s living in a designated area within Australia
  • Nominated an occupation that’s on the Skilled Occupation List
  • Completed a suitable skills assessment (and achieved the score that’s outlined in your invitation letter)
  • Not yet turned 50
  • Competency in the English language

the extended stay pathway

In order to qualify for the Extended Stay pathway you need to:

  • Hold a qualifying provisional Skilled Regional Sponsored, Skilled Independent Regional or Skilled Designated Area Sponsored visa (without having held more than one of them)

what you can do on this visa

This visa lets you:

  • Stay in Australia for up to four years
  • Live, work and study within the specified regional area of Australia
  • Travel in and out of Australia while the visa is valid

It also provides you with a direct pathway to the Skilled Regional (Residence) visa – subclass 887, which we’ve given information on above.

get a free assessment


skilled recognised graduate visa – subclass 476

how to qualify

This visa is especially for recent engineering graduates who’d like to gain up to 18 months of skilled work experience.

You might qualify for the Skilled Recognised Graduate visa if you:

  • Are not yet 31 years old
  • Have completed an engineering degree at a recognised institution within the last two years

You can also be inside or outside Australia when you apply but you must be outside of Australia when the visa is decided (unless you’re a Kiwi who has a Special Category visa – subclass 444).

what you can do on this visa

This visa lets you and your family stay here for up to 18 months and:

  • Travel
  • Work
  • Enrol in further professional studies
  • Improve your English skills through study

get a free assessment


temporary graduate visa – subclass 485

how to qualify

You could qualify for this temporary visa if you’re an international student who’s recently graduated from an Australian educational institution and you’d like to temporarily work here.

To be eligible for this visa you need to:

  • Be younger than 50 years of age
  • Be in Australia
  • Hold an eligible visa
  • Meet the two-year Australian study requirement
  • Meet the English language requirement
  • Have recently graduated with either an eligible qualification or with skills and qualifications that relate to an occupation on the skilled occupation list

You can also bring eligible family members with you.

the two streams

This visa has two streams, which are:

  • Graduate Work‘ – for international students who’ve got an eligible qualification and have graduated with skills and qualifications that relate to a job on the Skilled Occupation List (visa valid for 18 months from the date it’s granted)
  • ‘Post-Study Work’ – for international students who graduate with a higher education degree from an Australian education provider, regardless of the field they studied; and were granted their first student visa on or after 5 November 2011 (visa valid for up to four years from the date it’s granted, depending on their qualification)

No matter which stream you’re applying for you need to be in Australia when you apply for this visa, as well as when it’s decided.

what you can do on this visa

This visa lets you (and your family):

  • Travel
  • Work
  • Study

get a free assessment


temporary work (skilled) visa – subclass 457

how to qualify

If you’re a skilled worker who wants to work in your nominated field for up to four years this could be the visa for you if you’ve:

  • Been sponsored by an approved business
  • Got the required skills to fill a position that’s nominated by an approved business (if they can’t find an Australia citizen or permanent resident to do the work)

You can be inside or outside Australia when you apply.

what you can do on this visa

This visa lets you:

  • Work in Australia for up to four years
  • Bring your family to work or study here
  • Come and go from Australia as often as you like

get a free assessment


thinking australia? ask the experts!

If you think you might qualify for any of these visas then complete our free assessment through our dedicated 24/7 helpline.

Australian migration regulations are complex and meeting their requirements can be very demanding but you’re in luck: we really know our stuff.

That’s why we’ve got a team of migration consultants who’re ready to help you get your application right the first time, so you don’t waste time and money having to reapply.

What are you waiting for? Get in touch to have a free assessment!

get a free assessment