186 Visa

Employer Nomination Scheme ENS (Subclass 186 Visa)

186 Visa (Employer Nominated Scheme) Overview

The Subclass 186 Visa has 3 streams:

  • Direct Entry Stream
    For applicants who are qualified or have sufficient experience in an eligible occupation. See the Direct Entry Stream tab for specific requirements.
  • Transition Stream
    For 457 or 482 TSS Visa holders who have worked for their nominating employer for a minimum of two or three years. See the Transition Steam tab for specific requirements.
  • Agreement Stream
    For applicants who are sponsored by an employer under a labour agreement.

186 Visa holders can:

  • work in Australia indefinitely
  • study in Australia
  • travel to and from Australia for 5 years
  • enrol in Medicare (Australia’s public healthcare system)
  • sponsor your relatives to come to Australia
  • apply for Australian citizenship, if eligible

186 Visa General Eligibility

You might be eligible to apply for the 186 Permanent Visa if you have an Australian employer who is willing to sponsor you and meet the following requirements:

Sponsor
You must be nominated by a business in Australia before lodging your visa

Experience
Applicants must have at least 3 years of work experience in the nominated occupation.

Part-time work may be considered. Casual work will not be considered.

Age
The age limit is 45, unless exempt. See exemptions in specific stream tabs.

 

Employer Nomination

Applicants must be nominated by an Australian employer before applying for this visa and must apply within 6 months of the nomination being approved if the applications aren’t lodged together.

The visa cannot be granted if:

  • the nomination is withdrawn, or
  • the position is no longer available

Length of stay

This is a permanent visa, however, the 186 visa has a travel component that expires 5 years after the date of visa grant.

After this time, applicants can apply for one of the below:

Speak to one of our registered migration agents to find out whether you may be eligible to apply for the Subclass 186 Visa. Read More

Do You Want to Move to Australia with the Employer Nomination Scheme Visa Subclass 186?

Moving to Australia is a dream for many people across the world, and with the help of a qualified and experienced migration expert, there is no reason why this dream cannot become a reality if you are eligible for a Visa 186. There are a great variety of visa options for skilled overseas workers looking to start a new life in Australia, and many of the most popular ones involve obtaining sponsorship from an Australian employer. The Subclass 186 Direct Entry visa is one such option.

To qualify for the Employer Nomination Scheme Visa Subclass 186, you must have recent experience in your chosen occupation as well as an offer of employment and all of the other age, health and English language requirements that are common to most visas.

If you are wondering whether the Visa 186 Direct Entry route might be the right option for you, you can benefit greatly from consulting an expert for professional advice. As with all immigration law, there are lots of important requirements which need to be met and documents that need to be correctly filed in order to give you the very best chances of success in your application.

ASM Can Help You Get Your Visa 186

Australia relies heavily on skilled migrants coming from overseas to fill gaps in the labour market, and it was knowledge of this fact acquired over many years of working in the recruitment industry that led our founder to create Australian Skilled Migration in 2010. The aim was to build a migration agency that would make it easier and less stressful than it had ever been before for skilled workers from other countries to navigate the Australian immigration system and get the visas they need in order to move to Australia for work.

Our approach is all about putting the individual client at the centre of the process. Our team of highly trained migration agents are all registered with the Migration Agents Registration Authority and have over 50 years of relevant experience in the industry. They work closely with clients to gain a thorough understanding of their particular circumstances, before establishing the surest, quickest and most affordable path not only to a visa but ultimately to permanent residency in Australia.

Contact Us Today to Get Started With Your Subclass 186 Direct Entry Visa

To get started with your journey towards permanent residency via Direct Entry 186, you may want to make use of the range of excellent tools and resources available on our website. You can establish if the employer nomination scheme is the right path for you using our visa finder tool, before checking the free Skilled Occupations List you can download to see if your occupation is currently in demand in Australia.

If you would like to discuss your personal situation individually with a member of our friendly team, you can always arrange a phone or video consultation by filling out the online form or giving us a call on the number provided. Before long, you could be receiving the message to tell you that your Subclass 186 Employer Nomination Scheme Visa has been approved! Read Less

You may be able to apply for Permanent Residency through the Direct Entry Stream if you meet the following requirements:

Experience
You must have at least 3 years of relevant work experience

English

The primary applicant for the 186 Visa must have Competent English.

You will need to take an English test unless one of the following applies:

  • you are a passport holder from Canada, Ireland, UK, USA or NZ

If you need to take an English test, you can take one of the below tests:

TestRequired score
IELTSAt least 6 for each of the 4 components
TOEFL iBTAt least 12 for listening, 13 for reading, 21 for writing and 18 for speaking
PTE AcademicAt least 50 for each of the 4 components
OETAt least B for each of the 4 components
​CambridgeAt least 169 in each of the 4 components

Don’t meet this requirement? Click here to increase your English score

Age
You must be under 45 years of age when you apply for this visa.

You may be older than 45 years if you are;

  • you are nominated as an academic by an Australian University
  • you are nominated as a scientist, researcher or technical specialist by a Scientific Government Agency
  • You hold a New Zealand Subclass 444 or 461 Visa and have been working for your nominated employer for two years.

Health & Character
Meet the health and character requirements (Unless you are exempt). This requires police and medical checks.

Nomination
You must be nominated by an Australian employer and apply for the 186 visa within 6 months of the nomination being approved (If the visa and nomination applications were not lodged at the same time)

The visa will not be granted if the nomination is withdrawn. The Department does not link new nominations to existing visa applications.

You may be able to apply for Permanent Residency through the Transition Stream if you meet the following requirements:

Current Visa

You must hold one of the below visas to apply for the 186 Visa through the Transition Stream:

Experience

You must have been working full-time for your employer on your subclass 457 or subclass 482 visa for at least 3 years. Unless you held (or had applied for) a subclass 457 visa on 18 April 2017, then you only need to have been working for your employer for at least 2 years.

COVID Update

If you were temporarily stood down, had to take unpaid leave or had your hours reduced due to COVID-19, this time can still be counted towards the time worked for your employer.

English

The primary applicant for the Employer Nomination Scheme visa must have Competent English.

You will need to take an English test unless one of the following applies:

  • you are a passport holder from Canada, Ireland, UK, USA or NZ

If you need to take an English test, you can take one of the below tests:

TestRequired score
IELTSAt least 6 for each of the 4 components
TOEFL iBTAt least 12 for listening, 13 for reading, 21 for writing and 18 for speaking
PTE AcademicAt least 50 for each of the 4 components
OETAt least B for each of the 4 components
​CambridgeAt least 169 in each of the 4 components

Don’t meet this requirement? Click here to increase your English score

Note: There is no longer a School English exemption for the 186 visa.

Age
You must be under 45 years of age when you apply for this visa.

You may be older than 45 years if you are;

  • you held (or had applied for) a subclass 457 visa on 18 April 2017. In this case, you can apply up to 50 years of age
  • you are nominated as an academic by an Australian University
  • you are nominated as a scientist, researcher or technical specialist by a Scientific Government Agency
  • you are a medical practitioner who has worked in your position for at least 3 years as a 457 or 482 visa holder, and 2 of those years were in a regional area.
  • you have been working for your employer for 3 years on a 457 or 482 visa and you were earning at least the Fair Work High Income Threshold for each year of that period

Health & Character
Meet the health and character requirements (Unless you are exempt). This requires police and medical checks.

Nomination
You must be nominated by an Australian employer and apply for the 186 visa within 6 months of the nomination being approved (If the visa and nomination applications were not lodged at the same time)

The visa will not be granted if the nomination is withdrawn. The Department does not link new nominations to existing visa applications.

Include your family in your 186 Visa

186 visa holders may be able to include the below family members to their application

-> Dependent children/step-children
-> Partner’s dependent child or children
-> Partner

PARTNERS
Your married or de facto partner can be the same or opposite sex. Applicants must prove:
• the relationship is genuine and continuing
• you live together, or do not live separately on a permanent basis.
• your partner is at least 18 years of age when the application is lodged (there are some exceptions)
• you are not related by family (if you are in a de facto relationship)
• you and your partner have a mutual commitment to a shared life to the exclusion of all others

CHILDREN
To be eligible to be included or added to a 186 visa, a child must:
• be your child or a stepchild from a current or a previous relationship (in certain circumstances);
• not be married, engaged to be married, or have a de facto partner; and must be:
• under 18 years of age
or
• over 18 years of age but not yet turned 23, and be dependent on you or your partner
or
• over 23 years of age and be unable to earn a living to support themselves due to physical or cognitive limitations and be dependent on you or your partner (Note: The child will still need to meet Australia’s health requirement)
or
• a dependent child of a child who is eligible under 1, 2 or 3 above.

ENGLISH
Applicants over 18 must demonstrate Functional English. However, you can choose to pay an additional application fee to the department for family members who have less than functional English.

AGE
Children 23 years and over cannot be included in your application. (Unless there are exceptional circumstances)

HEALTH & CHARACTER
All family members must meet the health and character requirements. All applicants over 16 must provide police clearances.

If you already hold a permanent 186 (ENS) Visa and you would like to bring your family to Australia, you will need to apply for one of the family visas.

Subclass 186 Employer Nomination Scheme Visa Estimated Cost

How it works

Step 1

You have an Australian employer who is willing to sponsor you.

Step 2

Our migration agents liaise with you and your employer to collect documents.

Step 3

We lodge your nomination and visa application with the Department.

Step 4

We wait until a decision is made on your nomination and visa application.

Step 5

You are expected to work for your employer for 2 years after approval.

Not sure if you can apply for this visa?

Take our online eligibility assessment and get an instant result via email.

Get a quote

Know what visa you want to apply for but need some pricing? Get in touch with us and we will get back to you with a fixed price quote.

Book a consultation

Australian Skilled Migration specialises in employer sponsored visas and can assist with your Permanent 186 Visa application. 

Find an employer

If you are looking for an Australian employer to sponsor you for permanent residency, go to our current vacancies page to see if we have a suitable position for you.

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