Australia’s migration laws on the skill visas are complicated and without a good understanding of the detail requirement it is easy to make simple mistakes. These mistakes could potentially make your visa application invalid, or worse to result in a visa refusal. That’s why enlisting the help of a registered migration agent for your visa application is crucial to the success of your application. According to the most recent published data, 61% of skilled visas are lodged by registered migration agents.

If you are interested in skill visas, you may consider Australia skill visas including subclass 189, 190 and 491.  All these visas are points-tested and require the applicant to first submit an Expression Of Interest (EOI) by first meeting the minimum requirements below:

  1. Under 45 years old
  2. Competent English
  3. Nominated occupation on the relevant occupation list
  4. Successful skill assessment for the nominated occupation
  5. At least 65 points on the points table

Let’s explore these requirements in a little more detail.

Be under 45 years old

This is a fixed requirement, and there is no exception.  You must be under 45 years old on the day you submit your visa application.  Please note that EOI is not a visa application.  So, if you are 44 years old on the day you submitted your EOI, then a few months later you received invitation to apply for your visa but you have already turned 45 on the day you submit your visa application, then you are no longer eligible to apply for the skill visa.

Have Competent English

You must show evidence of having at least Competent English.  According to the legislation, you can show Competent English in the following ways:

  • You undertook a language test and attained the minimum score, or
Valid testsMinimum Score
IELTSAt least 6 in each of the four test components
OETAt least B in each of the four test components
TOEFL iBTAt least these scores: 18 for speaking, 13 for reading, 21 for writing and 12 for listening
PTE AcademicAt least 50 in each of the four test components
  • You hold a passport issued by the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Canada, New Zealand or the Republic of Ireland to a citizen of that country

Have a nominated occupation on the relevant occupation list

As this is a skill visa, you must nominate an occupation.  Your occupation must also be on the relevant occupation list.  It is important that you check which occupation list your occupation falls into as this may affect which skill visa option you can apply to.  Skilled occupation lists published by the government can change over time, but at of now, there are the following 3 occupation list relevant for skill visas.

Skilled Occupation ListsNo. of Occupations ListedAvailable for the following Skilled Visas
MLTSSL212Subclass 189, 190, 491
STSOL215Subclass 190, 491 only
ROL77Subclass 491 only

When trying to match your occupation to the ones listed on the relevant occupation list, you may or may not find a direct match given the job title you are currently working as.  In addition to checking the job title, you must also check the tasks included in the occupation.  This information can be found by their respective ANZSCO code.

Have a successful skill assessment for the nominated occupation

After finding a good match of your nominated occupation, you must then be assessed that you actually have the relevant qualification and/or work experience to perform this occupation.  This is the task of skill assessment that is performed by the relevant assessing authority for the specific nominated occupation.  Every occupation has an assessing authority, so it is important to find out which assessing authority will be performing this skill assessment and understanding the requirements that assessing authority has set. 

There are many assessing authorities and each one may have different requirements to be met.  Assessing authorities typically will require assessing your qualifications and some assessing authorities may require assessing your relevant work experience, and others may require you pass a certain test.  Some assessing authorities may require you to have a certain level of English competency as well.  Certain occupations may have a higher English requirement than that of the Competent English mentioned earlier for the skill visa requirement.

Have at least 65 points on the points table

As mentioned earlier, skill visas are points-tested visas and require you to meet a minimum point before you can successfully submit an EOI.  At the moment, the minimum is 65 points.  According to the legislation, there are a number of categories that you can gain points.  Below is a list of these categories and the maximum points you can gain if you meet the criteria.  Do a calculation of how many points you can gain.  It is important are correct in your calculation as you will be required to show evidence of your claimed scores.  If you claimed more points that you actually can score, then this will have an impact at the time of your visa application.

CategoriesMaximum points that can be gained
Overseas skilled employment15
Australian skilled employment20
Educational qualifications20
Specialist education qualification10
Australian study requirement5
Professional Year in Australia5
Credentialled community language5
Study in regional Australia5
Partner skills10

As there are always too many applicants than there are available invitation positions, so the government will have their systems to decide who to give an invitation to.  For subclass 189 visa, invitations are given to the applicants with the highest scoring point.  The government does publish data of their invitations on their website.  The subclass 491 visa can be nominated by a state or territory government agency, but they can also be sponsored by an eligible relative.  If you go for the family sponsorship, then invitation follows subclass 189 in that invitations are given to the applicants with the highest scoring point.  Subclass 190 and 491 state nomination are state nominated visas and invitation will depend on the nomination criteria given by the state or territory providing the nomination.