The 189 Visa: Your Ticket to Permanent Residency in Australia
The General Skilled Migration (GSM) 189 visa is a Permanent Residence visa offered by the Australian government for skilled workers who wish to immigrate permanently to Australia. This visa subclass is designed for individuals who have qualifications and skills in a particular occupation that is in demand in Australia. The visa allows successful applicants to live and work in Australia permanently and it provides a pathway to citizenship.
One of the key benefits of the 189 visa is that it does not require the applicant to have a job offer or sponsorship from an Australian employer. This makes it an attractive option for skilled workers who want to migrate to Australia independently, without the need for a job offer or other forms of support.
189 Points Based Visa
The 189 visa is a points-based visa which means applicants have to meet eligibility criteria and score a minimum of 65 points in order to be considered for the visa.
189 Visa eligibility requirements
To be eligible for a 189 visa applicants must first submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) through SkillSelect. This is an online platform used by the Australian government to manage the GSM program. The EOI includes information about the applicant’s skills and work experience as well as their intention to live and work in Australia.
Once the EOI has been submitted the applicant is assigned a score based on the points system. They are then placed in a pool of other applicants with similar scores. The Australian government conducts regular invitation rounds where they select applicants from the pool to apply for the 189 visa. During these invitation rounds the government sets different minimum points score requirement so even though the minimum points requirement for a 189 visa is 65, the actual points required to receive an invitation to apply can be as high as 90 points for some occupations.
189 visa requirements
- Age: The applicant must be under the age of 45 at the time of application.
- English language proficiency: The applicant must demonstrate a minimum level of English language proficiency.
- Skill assessment: The applicant must have their skills and qualifications assessed by an assessing authority.
- Occupation: The applicant must have an occupation that is listed on the Skilled Occupation List.
- Health and character requirements: The applicant must meet health and character requirements
Applicants between the ages of 18 and 24 can score up to 25 points, while applicants between the ages of 25 and 32 can score up to 30 points. Applicants between the ages of 33 and 39 can score up to 25 points, while applicants between the ages of 40 and 44 can score up to 15 points. Applicants who are over the age of 45 are not eligible for a 189 visa.
English language skills
Applicants can score up to 20 points for their English language proficiency based on their results in a recognized English language exam i.e. IELTS or TOEFL.
Applicants can score up to 15 points for their skills assessment based on the relevance of their qualifications and work experience to their nominated occupation.
Applicants can score up to 15 points for their nominated occupation based on the demand for that occupation in Australia.
Applicants can score up to 20 points for their work experience which is calculated by the number of years they have worked in their nominated occupation.
189 Visa applicants can score up to 20 points for their highest level of education.
Prospective 189 Visa applicants can score up to 10 points if their partner meets skills and language levels.
Take Free Visa Assessment to check eligibility
A free visa assessment for Australia is a preliminary evaluation of your eligibility to apply for a visa to Australia. This assessment has been taken by over 1million people worldwide: Free Visa Assessment
Making a formal 189 visa application
If an applicant is selected for an invitation they will have 60 days to submit a formal visa application. The application must include all relevant documentation including as proof of identity, qualifications, work experience and English language proficiency. Applicants at this stage will also be required to undergo a medical examination and provide police clearance certificates.
Health checks and police background checks can only be done after receiving an Invitation to apply and not before. This is because when an applicant accepts an invitation to apply and pays their fees they are given a HAP code which is the barcode they need in order to get an immigration health check completed by an approved provider.
189 visa assessment
Once the visa application has been submitted it will be assessed by the Australian government and the applicant will be notified of the outcome. If the application is successful the applicant will be granted a 189 visa which allows them to live and work in Australia permanently.
The assessment timeframe for a 189 visa application can vary depending the number of applications being processed by the Department of Home Affairs at the time. The Department of Home Affairs aims to process 75% of complete General Skilled Migration applications within 11 months of receipt.