Skilled regional nominated migration (489) - closed to new nominations

The skilled regional nominated (489) visa is closed to new nominations.

The new Skilled Work Regional (subclass 491) visa will be open by the Commonwealth Department of Home Affairs in November 2019.

NSW will shortly advise when it will open for nominations under the new Skilled Work Regional (subclass 491)

Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) subclass 491 visa

The Commonwealth Department of Home Affairs has announced that a new points-tested visa to assist regional Australia, for applicants with an eligible skilled occupation, nominated by a state or territory government agency will come into effect in November 2019.

The new Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) subclass 491 visa will replace the Skilled Regional Nominated (489) visa.

Specific details regarding eligible occupations and postcodes designated as regional areas will be also released in due course.

About this visa

The new Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) subclass 491 visa will enable eligible skilled workers and their families to live, work and study in designated regional areas of Australia for 5 years. Visa holders will be eligible to apply for a Permanent Residence visa after three years. Applicants for this visa must be nominated by an Australian state or territory government agency or sponsored by an eligible family member residing in a designated regional area and be invited to apply for the visa, following submission of an Expression of Interest (EOI) in SkillSelect.

Eligibility

Applicants must:

  • have a relevant occupation on a skilled occupation list;
  • have a suitable skills assessment for the occupation;
  • satisfy the points test;
  • be under 45 years of age at the time of invitation;
  • have Competent English;
  • submit an Expression of Interest vis SkillSelect;
  • be nominated by a state or territory government agency or be sponsored by an eligible relative;
  • be invited by the Department to apply; and
  • meet public interest criteria including health and character requirements

489 visa participating NSW regions

NSW Department of Industry worked in partnership with participating Regional Development Authorities (RDA) committees in NSW to deliver the 489 program.

There were nine regions participating in NSW's 489 program:

Applications should not be made to NSW RDAs for nomination under the new Skilled Work Regional (subclass 491) visa until advised by the NSW Government.

RDA assessment processes

Some RDAs’ nomination processes for the 489 visa may have included an initial expression of interest step or subjective criteria such as ‘fit for the region; which attracted an upfront, non-refundable fee. Please note that this is NOT the same EOI in SkillSelect.

Whilst the NSW Government does not endorse the RDA expression of interest step, each RDA had the ability to manage its own delivery of the 489 program. The NSW Government strongly encouraged all potential applicants to seek specialist advice from a registered migration agent prior to completing in an expression of interest step or full application process with an RDA.