Skilled Independent Subclass 189 visa allows highly skilled workers who are not sponsored by an employer, State or Territory of Australia, or family member to live and work permanently in Australia.

The minimum requirements of the Points-tested stream of this visa are set out below. It is a permanent General Skilled Migration visa which does not require sponsorship by a State/Territory Government or relative in Australia.

SkillSelect Only Application

In order to apply for a Skilled Independent Subclass 189 visa, you must first lodge an Expression of Interest through SkillSelect and be invited by the Department of Immigration to apply.

Once you are invited to apply for a skilled visa, you must lodge your application within 60 days, otherwise the invitation lapses. Accordingly, it is very important that you have all required documentation prepared to lodge as soon as possible after receiving the invitation.

Visa Criteria

At the time that you are invited to apply for this visa, you must:

  • be under 45 years of age
  • nominate an occupation that is included on the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL)
  • have your skills assessed by the appropriate Australian skills assessing authority as suitable for your nominated occupation
  • have competent Englishe.
  • hold a valid passport issued by the UK, USA, Canada, New Zealand or the Republic of Ireland (and you are a citizen of that country) OR
  • an IELTS test score of at least 6 in EACH test component OR
  • an OET test score of at least B in EACH test component OR
  • a TOEFL iBT test score of at least 12 for listening, 13 for reading, 21 for writing and 18 for speaking OR
  • a PTE test score of at least 50 in EACH test component OR
  • a CAE test score of at least 169 in EACH test component

Score at least 60 on the relevant points test (which takes into account your age, English competency, qualifications and work experience, amongst other factors).

Do I Apply in Australia or Overseas?

You can either be in Australia or overseas when you apply for a Subclass 189 Skilled Independent Visa. In order to lodge from within Australia, you would need to hold a substantive visa or a Bridging A, B or C visa.

Once you apply from within Australia, you would receive a bridging visa allowing you to remain in Australia during processing of your visa application.

Including Family Members

You can include the following types of family members in your application:

  • Spouses, defacto partners and same-sex partners
  • Dependent children
  • Other dependent family members – eg parents who live with you and are financially dependent

It is possible to include partners and dependent children after lodgement of the application, but other dependent family members must be included at lodgement.

Duration and Conditions

The visa is a permanent visa, allowing applicants to remain in Australia indefinitely with full work rights. If you are outside Australia when the visa is granted, you and your family members will need to enter Australia for the first time prior to expiry of your health and police clearances.

Application Process

In order to qualify for an invitation to apply for this visa, you must lodge an ‘Expression of Interest’ (EOI), which sets out how you meet the relevant requirements.

If you wish to wishe to apply for this visa under the Points-tested stream MUST first be INVITED to lodge an application by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP).

Stage 1: Initial Eligibility Assessment

The first step that we will take is to conduct an initial assessment of your eligibility for this visa. This involves reviewing your qualifications, work experience, English language and other circumstances, to establish whether or not you are likely to meet the relevant requirements.

As part of this initial eligibility assessment, we will consider which MLTSSL occupation(s) you are likely to be able to nominate, and whether or not you are potentially eligible for a positive skills assessment from the relevant assessing authority for that occupation.

Stage 2: Skills Assessment

Should our initial assessment indicate that you are eligible for a positive skills assessment and EOI, we will prepare your skills assessment application.

For each skilled occupation listed on the MLTSSL, the DIBP has specified an assessing authority that may carry out skills assessments for that occupation.

Stage 3: Expression of Interest

Once you have received a positive skills assessment from the skills assessing authority, we will prepare and lodge your EOI. Although you do not need to provide supporting documents at this stage, you MUST be able to provide evidence that the information supplied in the EOI is correct at the time that you are invited to apply.

You will subsequently receive a result and points score from the DIBP, which is used to rank you against other applicants who have lodged EOIs for this visa. Ranking is based partially on whether or not your occupation is a skill that Australia requires at the time your EOI is assessed. If your EOI is successful, you will be invited to lodge a visa application.

Note: The DIBP retains an EOI for 2 years from the date that it is lodged. During this time, your EOI can be updated if any of your circumstances change (e.g. you obtain a new qualification or skills assessment). If your ranking changes during this 2-year period, based on either your changing circumstances or Australia’s changing skill needs, you may be issued with an invitation to apply for the visa at that point in time.

Stage 4: Visa Application

Once the DIBP has invited you to apply for this visa, we will prepare and lodge your visa application within the specified time frame, together with all of the documents that support the information that you provided in your EOI. This includes your skills assessment, English language test results, qualifications, work references and all other required documents.

Should your visa application be approved, you will be granted a permanent visa. You may be either in Australia or overseas when your visa is granted.

Book consultation with one of our registered migration agents if you need assistance with your Skilled Independent visa application. Our migration agents will provide you with a full list of the information and documents required to support your application. When you have provided the necessary details and documents, along with the required assessment fee, we will lodge your application on your behalf.