Changes to regional visa from 16 November 2019

Changes to regional visa from 16 November 2019

Change to the regional migration planning levels from 23,000 places to 25,000 places in 2019-20. 

 

In March this year, the Government announced it would reduce the permanent migration cap from 190,000 to 160,000 places, and within that set aside 23,000 places for regional visas.

Following unprecedented growth (124 per cent) in the number of regional visas granted in the first quarter of this programme year, the Government is increasing the total number of regional places to 25,000.

 

New skilled regional visa

 

Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme visa (subclass 187) (direct entry stream) closes to new applications from 16 November 2019

With the introduction of the Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 494), starting on 16 November 2019, the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) visa (subclass 187) direct entry (DE) stream will close to new applications from 16 November 2019.

 

Skilled Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 489) (invited pathway) closes to new applications from 16 November 2019

With the introduction of the Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491) starting on 16 November 2019, the Skilled Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 489) invited pathway will be closed to new applications on 16 November 2019.

Benefits

  • Priority processing of regional applications
  • Incentives for migrants to stay in regional areas longer term as they build ties through workforce and community participation
  • Can apply for permanent residence without a second nomination stage, if eligible, through the subclass 191 visa (commences 16 November 2022)
  • Lower cost to employers with only one SAF levy stage for the subclass 494 nomination (compared to the two stages for the current subclass 482 to ENS subclass 186 permanent resident pathway)
  • More points available to subclass 491 visa applicants
  • Broader range of occupations available than non-regional pathways
  • Expanded and consistent classification of regional areas

 

New regional postcodes

 

 

New Schedule 6D points

The new points are as follows:

  • 15 points for nomination by a State or Territory government agency or sponsorship by a family member residing in regional Australia, to live and work in regional Australia;
  • 10 points for a skilled spouse or de facto partner;
  • 10 points for certain Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) qualifications;
  • 5 points for a spouse or de facto partner with ‘Competent English’; 
  • 10 points for applicants without a spouse or de facto partner;

 

New skilled regional visa secondary holders 

A secondary holder of a new skilled regional visa can live, work and study in a different regional area to the primary visa holder so long as they are still in a designated regional area.

 

Subclass 191 – Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) visa

​This visa is for people who have lived, worked and studied in designated regional area Australia on visa subclasses 491 and 494. It does not commence until 16 November 2022. 

This is a permanent visa. It lets you stay in Australia indefinitely.

You must:

  • hold an eligible visa
  • have lived for at least 3 years and have a taxable income at or above a specific income threshold for at least three years
  • both primary and secondary applicants have complied with the conditions of the eligible visa you hold or have held

 

There are many other changes to the visa application and process, so please contact us at carol@gravitategroup.com.au for more information.