Please note that the information provided for skilled visas may be subject to change due to the Federal Budget announcements.
The Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491) was created to address labour market shortages in regional Australia by encouraging greater skilled migration to regional Australia.
What is the 491 visa?
The subclass 491 visa is for applicants invited to apply for the visa and who are either nominated by a State or Territory government or sponsored by an eligible family member, who resides in a designated regional area.
The main features of the subclass 491 visa are:
- It is a temporary visa (5-year visa)
- It is a points-based skilled visa (it requires a minimum of 65 points)
- It can be lodged onshore or offshore
- It has an age limitation
- Requires sponsorship by either a state or territory government agency or an eligible relative
- Live, work and study in a designated regional area of Australia
What are the eligibility requirements for the 491 visa?
The main eligibility requirements for the Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491) are:
- Applicants must have an occupation on a relevant skilled occupation list
- Applicants must have a suitable skills assessment for the occupation
- Applicants must be invited to apply for this visa
- Applicants must be aged under 45 to be invited to apply for the visa
- Applicants must satisfy the points test
- Applicants must have at least Competent English (IELTS – at least band 6 for each of the four components; PTE – at least 50 for each of the four components)
- Applicants must meet the health requirement
- Applicants must meet the character requirement
- Applicants must be nominated to apply by a state or territory or sponsored by an eligible relative
- Nomination by an Australian state or territory: All state and territory government agencies have their own criteria for deciding who they will nominate. Therefore, applicants must check the relevant state nomination requirements
- Sponsorship by an eligible relative: The eligible relative must be:
- 18 years or older
- Usually resident in a designated area of Australia
- An Australian citizen, an Australian permanent resident, or an eligible New Zealand citizen
- Applicant’s or applicant’s partner’s eligible relative
How can I apply for a permanent visa?
The Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491) is a temporary visa. If you hold a subclass 491 visa, you would need to apply Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) visa (subclass 191) in order to receive a permanent visa.