New regional work visas from 16 November 2019. The visa subclass 491 will offer 14,000 places each year for the foreign skilled workers living and working in regional areas.
Permanent residency (PR) pathway is also available for eligible applicants and their families.
Two temporary visas, Skilled Work Regional (subclass 491) Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional visa (subclass 494) will be available from 16 November 2019.
The much-anticipated visas will offer 23,000 places each year and will replace the existing visa subclasses 489 and 187.
The holders of these visas will be required to work and stay in the designated regional areas until they become eligible for permanent residency. Perth and the Gold Coast now included.
Key features of visa subclass 491
This is a temporary visa which is available for eligible skilled workers and their families to live, work and study in regional Australia for 5 years.
It is a point-based visa where an applicant requires either a state nomination or a sponsorship from an eligible family member who is settled in designated regional areas.
Here are some key features of Skilled Work Regional visa (subclass 491):
- 14000 places to be allocated each year
- A wide range of occupations are eligible (over 500)
- Age limit is set at 45 years
- Visa to be granted for 5 years
- Must live and work in regional areas for at least 3 years before being eligible for PR
- Regional area is mainly anywhere except metropolitan Sydney, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Melbourne and Perth
- The applicant should be earning a minimum wage of $ 53,900 per annum for three years (concessions may apply)
- Visa holder is allowed to move from one regional area to another
- PR pathway available through visa subclass 191 that will commence from 16 November 2022
- Visa is available for an application fee of $4,045 and the partner fee is set at $2,025.
Difference between the 489 visa (ceased) and 491 visa
The 491 visa holders will now have to wait for 3 years for PR while it used to be 2 years in the visa subclass 489.
The new visa covers more regional areas compared to 489 visa. The areas where the holders of 491 visa can live include all areas in Australia except metropolitan Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane.
There will be more points available under the new visa – unmarried or single applicants will get extra points that serve as a bonus for bachelors and there will be more points to available for eligible relative sponsors and skilled partners with competent English.
How the point system will work for this visa
This is how the points will be awarded:
- 10 points for a skilled partner or spouse (previously 5 points with 489 visa)
- 5 points for applicants with a spouse or partner with competent English (no points previously)
- 10 points for applicants who are single (no points previously)
- 15 points if nominated by State or Territory (previously less than 10 points)
- 15 points if the applicant is sponsored by a family member residing in regional Australia (previously 10 points)
- Certain STEM qualifications will get 10 points
To learn more contact us today.