Skilled Independent Visa

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    Skilled Independent Visa Subclass 189

    What is a qualified independent work visa (subclass 189)?

    With this permanent work visa, you can work and live in Australia. Foreign skilled employees on the Australian Skilled Occupation List may be eligible for a Subclass 189 visa if they are convinced. The candidate must pass a competence exam and be sponsored by an employer or family member, or nominated by a state or quasi-state government to obtain this visa.

    Supplementary Routes to Permanent Residents for New Zealand Citizens

    This new branch of the Skilled Independent (Subclass 189) visa became operational on July 1, 2017, making it easier for New Zealand citizens living in Australia to become permanent residents.

     To apply, you must meet the following requirements:-

    • Special category (subclass 444) visa holder
    • You have lived in Australia for 5 consecutive years and started that period before applying.
    • Meet taxable income requirements
    • Meet health requirements
    • Meet character requirements

    What are the benefits of a skilled and independent work visa (subclass 189)? 

    Skilled Independent Work Visa offers you and your family all the benefits of permanent residence in Australia.

    • Work and live indefinitely in Australia
    • Opportunity to study in Australia
    • Enroll in Medicare, Australia’s government health care system
    • Opportunity to apply for Australian citizenship
    • Permanent Resident Sponsor Relatives
    • Go in and out of Australia as you like

    How do I apply for a skilled independent work visa (subclass 189)?

    Step 1: Check if your profession is on the Qualified Occupations List

    This visa is only available to those who can fill the positions on this list.

     Step 2: Make sure you meet all eligibility requirements

     To apply, you must encounter the following requirements: –

    • 444 Under the age of 450
    • Basic knowledge of English
    • Meet health requirements
    • Meet character requirements
    • Australian Government has no outstanding debt
    • Ready to sign the Australian Declaration of Values

     Step 3: Complete Skill Assessment

    To qualify for a Subclass 189 visa, you must complete the skill assessment and achieve an acceptable score. The score must match the score on the invitation (step 5). See the DHA website for information on how to get a good competency rating.

     Step 4: Send an expression of interest via Skill Select

     Next, you need to send an expression of interest (EOI) through Skill Select. The Skill Select program asks a series of questions about your background, skills, and related work experience. Your EOI will be viewed by Australian authorities and will be available to Australian employers seeking to hire someone with your skills. If you are recommended or sponsored by

     and your EOI meets your visa requirements, you will be asked to apply for a 189 visa.

     Step 5: Find a sponsor or get a government nomination

     A skilled independent work visa (subclass 189) must be sponsored by your employer or family member or nominated by the state or quasi-state government. As soon as you find the right sponsor, you will receive an invitation to apply for a visa.

     If you do not have a qualified relative or employer to sponsor, you may be able to find one through the Skill Select program. This program matches employers and professionals looking for foreign workers. The state or quasi-state government may also nominate you under this program.

     Step 6: Ask the sponsor to fill out the required documents.

     Once you find a sponsor, the sponsor should indorse you to your visa. In many cases, you can apply for this visa at the same time you apply for a sponsor.

     Employers can fill out an employer nomination application online via DHA.

     Step 7: Apply for a Skilled Independent Work Visa (Subclass 189)

    After finding and recommending an employer, you can apply for a 189 visa online through DHA.

     Step 8: Waiting for a decision

    It may take several months for the DHA to make a visa application decision. The processing period for 189 visas in 2016 was 3 months.

     Step 9: Receive a visa and start working

     Once your application is accepted, you will receive a visa and will be able to work in Australia.

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