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Subclass 491 Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) Visa

Subclass 491 Australia is a provisional visa. It enables aspiring applicants and their family members to live, study, and work in the designated regional areas of Australia for 5 years. Visa 491 Australia was introduced recently and has replaced the 489 visa. Subclass 491 is a skilled visa and requires an applicant to score a minimum of 65 points to qualify for the Skilled Migration Points Test. It has an age limit of 45 years and requires the candidate to obtain a positive skills assessment before applying. Applicants for this visa must be nominated either; by any Australian State or Territory Government agency or should be sponsored by a family member (If eligible) residing in a designated regional area. The applicant shall be invited to apply for this visa following the submission of a successful Expression of Interest (EOI) on SkillSelect. Subclass 491 visa holders may also be eligible to apply for a Permanent Residence visa (subclass 191) after 3 years, provided they fulfil all the visa conditions and requirements.

How does a Subclass 491 Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) Visa Work

An applicant is required to submit an Expression of interest (EOI) in SkillSelect to apply for visa 491 Australia. In the EOI, the applicant is required to mention if he is being sponsored by an eligible relative or would like to be nominated by any Australian State or Territory Government agency. The visa applicant should be able to demonstrate that he qualifies for the State or Territory nomination and has adequate skills, work experience, and qualifications that may be preferred. An applicant would also be required to undergo a positive skill assessment to demonstrate this. The skills assessment must be undertaken before the application is lodged.

All the State and Territory government agencies have their own nomination process and criteria for deciding who they will nominate. The EOI submitted by the applicant will provide the States with the points score. If an applicant scores enough points, the State and Territory Government agencies might nominate the applicant for the visa. For more information on the scores and points test, reach out to our experienced 491 visa immigration agents. We provide professional advice and assistance. You can always rely on our 491 visa consultants.

If the applicant is nominated by any State or sponsored by an eligible relative and fulfils all the 491 visa requirements, the Department shall grant the applicant visa 491 in Australia. The validity period of the visa is five years, and once the applicant is granted a subclass 491 visa in Australia, various conditions will be imposed on the applicant:

  • The applicant would be required to live, work, and study in a designated regional area only.
  • The applicant must not marry or enter into a de-facto relationship before his entry to Australia on this visa.
  • The applicant must notify the Department if there are any changes in his passport or contact details.
    The applicant must be able to provide additional evidence related to his work experience, education, and residence if requested.
  • The applicant must attend an interview (if asked for) in connection with the Department’s queries for the grant of this visa.

The applicant must fulfil the required eligibility conditions at all times; if there is a failure to do so, the visa may get cancelled.

Understanding Regional Areas; most locations of Australia outside major cities such as Sydney, Brisbane, and Melbourne have been classed as designated regional areas for migration purposes. The Department of Home Affairs has circulated the list of postcodes considered as designated regional areas for the purpose of the Australian visas. Some of the popular regional areas include Perth, Gold Coast, Adelaide, Sunshine Coast, Lake Macquarie, Geelong, Newcastle, Wollongong, and Canberra.

A holder of a subclass 491 visa will not be able to apply for other skills-based visa streams in Australia unless they have completed at least three years of stay in a designated regional area unless exceptional circumstances allow otherwise. Identical to the arrangements in the previous subclass 457 and 482 programs, the holders of the new provisional visa can be negatively impacted by any non-compliance on the part of the sponsor.

For a detailed understanding of the 491 visa requirements, get in touch with our 491 visa immigration agent. Our team has professional 491 visa consultants to cater to all your visa related queries and concerns. To secure your visa 491 to Australia, avail our services now!

What are the Eligibility Requirements for a Subclass 491 Australia Visa

To be able to apply for visa 491 as per the 491 visa requirements, an applicant must meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • The applicant must be under 45 years of age at the time of application (exemptions apply).
  • The applicant must be nominated by an Australian State or Territory Government agency or;
  • The applicant must be sponsored by an eligible relative residing in one of the designated regional areas in Australia.
  • The applicant must be able to score more than 65 points in the Skilled Migration Points Test to be invited to apply for the visa.
  • The applicant must be able to prove his English language ability and demonstrate that he possesses Competent English at the time of application
  • The applicant must be able to meet the skill requirement as specified by the Department. Applicant’s occupation must be listed on the combined list of eligible skilled occupations for a subclass 491 Australia skilled regional visa
  • The application should have obtained a suitable skill assessment.
  • The applicant must meet the specified health and character requirements as set out by the Department.
  • The applicant must ensure they pay back all the dues owed to the Australian Government (if there is any) or have made adequate payback arrangements.
  • The applicant (if above eighteen) must sign a values statement to confirm they will obey the Australian laws and living rules.
  • The applicant must not have had a visa cancelled, or an application refused earlier.

The visa holder is not allowed to apply for any other skilled/permanent resident visa or partner visa 820 for three years. The shared information is exclusive but not exhaustive, and the applicants are advised to go through the complete 491 visa requirements before applying. For more information on 491 visa Brisbane,  Gold Coast or your desired location in Australia, please contact our renowned 491 visa consultant. E-Help 491 visa immigration agent will assist you with your application from start to finish. Don’t wait, contact us now!

OTHER STIPULATED 491 VISA REQUIREMENTS

While the Sate or Territory Government Nomination Stream depends on the Skilled Migration Points Test score to invite and nominate an applicant, there are certain requirements under the 491 sponsorship via family stream as well. Sponsorship must be approved before you can be granted a visa. For being sponsored through the family stream, the following points and considerations should be met:

The Applicants sponsor must be –

  • Over 18 years of age.
  • Be a resident of any designated regional area in Australia.
  • Be an Australian citizen, an Australian permanent resident, or an eligible New Zealand citizen.
  • The applicant’s or their partners’ eligible relative.

Eligible Relative can be-

  • Applicant’s parent
  • Applicant’s child or step-child
  • Applicant’s brother, sister, adoptive sister, adoptive brother, step-sister, or step-brother.
  • Applicant’s aunt, uncle, adoptive uncle, adoptive aunt, step-aunt, or step-uncle.
  • Applicant’s niece, nephew, adoptive nephew or niece, step-nephew or step-niece.
  • Applicant’s grandparent, or
  • Applicant’s first cousin

The 491 visa requirements and application process can be tricky and needs professional help. We suggest you book an appointment with our 491 visa consultants to know your eligibility and secure a favourable visa.

TSS vs 491 vs 494 visa

The table below compares the 482 TSS, 491 and 494 Visa.

 

482 TSS Visa 491 Visa 494 Visa
Age Limit No limit Below 45 years Below 45 years
Sponsor Standard Business Sponsor State, Territory, Eligible relative living in a regional area Standard Business Sponsor
Work Experience Full-Time 2 years Depends on the work Full Time 3 Years
Validity Period 2-4 years from issuance 5 years from issuance 5 years from issuance
Skills Assessment Required for some occupations Required Required
Position Type Full Time Full-time for 1 year Full Time
Medicare N/A Interim Medicare Available Interim Medicare Available
Visa Conditions Works for only approved employer; if employment ceases, have 60 days to find a new employer to change the nomination or leave Australia Reside, study and work in a regional area; requires residency, education and occupation proof; should not marry or enter a de-facto relationship before entry Only works for an approved employer; if employment ceases, have 90 days to transfer nomination or leave Australia
GTE GTE Statement required No GTE applies No GTE applies

 

Cost Estimation For 491 Visa

The fee for a main or subsequent visa applicant is AUS $4,240. However, the entire process for a 491 Visa can cost you approximately $4,450 to $6,450. It can be more or less about $1000 to $1500, depending on whether you possess a skill assessment.

Processing Time

The processing time for a visa 491 application is not specified. However, regional application procedures are given higher precedence. For State/Territory Government: Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) Visa (Subclass 491) Regional nominees, the visas are issued in 58 days for 75% of applicants. Around 90% of visas are handled in 76 days or less.

If you are an applicant for Regional Family Sponsored Skilled Work (Provisional) Visa (Subclass 491), your application may take less time to process. It takes about 57 days for 75% of visa applications to be processed. However, 90% of visas are also handled in 71 days or less.

Why Apply for a Subclass 494 Skilled Employer Sponsored (Regional) Visa

Individuals holding a subclass 491 visa enjoy certain entitlements. With a grant of visa 491 Australia, they enjoy the following permissions and benefits:

  • Allowed to stay in Australia for five years
  • Allowed to live, work, and study in a designated regional area of Australia.
  • Allowed to include family members in the application.
  • Allowed to travel to and fro from Australia for up to five years.
  • If eligible, allowed to apply for a Permanent Residence after three years from the time of visa grant.
  • Allowed to move anywhere between regional areas provided the visa conditions are met.
  • Applicants for a regional visa are given priority processing.
  • New entrants or migrants are provided incentives to settle and work in regional areas for the long term.
  • 491 visa applications get an added advantage of additional points.
    • Other than skilled work regional visas, we also offer

temporary graduate visaskilled independent visaspouse visa, subclass 020bridging visavisitor visa, and more. To know in detail, please contact us.

Work Experience And Point Score Criteria

The 491 Visa is assessed based on the score points and prior work experience. You must submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) for this visa. Invitations are given to applicants with more than 65 points; however, you must receive at least 65 to be invited to apply.

Your profession must be included in the list of qualified occupations. You must complete a skill assessment through the accredited assessing body to prove that you possess the knowledge and credentials required to work in your desired occupation.

However, specific jobs may require more than 65 points to be considered.
When you are invited to apply for a visa, you must meet the eligibility requirements based on your point total.

Nomination Pathways

The NSW nomination process for the Skilled Work Regional Visa (subclass 491) has two alternative pathways. But for both approaches, you need to finish these three initial steps.

  • Browse the Home Affairs website to see if you qualify for this visa subclass.
  • Verify that you meet the mentioned NSW minimum eligibility requirements.
  • Fill out the EOI and ensure all the information is valid.
  • Your EOI should solely request nomination for NSW and the Skilled Nominated visa (subclass 491).

The two methods for the nomination are:

  • Contact an RDA office directly

After finishing the above steps, you can apply directly to the RDA office where you desire to reside or work. This has to be done within the first three years following your visa issuance by Home Affairs.
Apply directly to the RDA office where you desire to reside and work.

Make sure to include proof of your current address and all points claimed in your EOI along with your application. Providing a copy of your EOI is also mandatory.

  • Receive an invitation from Investment NSW

For this pathway, you need to receive an invitation to apply in a round of invitations. You may not be invited for application for reasons other than those inherent in an invitation round. (Do not contact our office to ask to be invited.)

Inquire about Investment NSW within 14 days of receiving an invitation.

In your EOI, every point, as well as your current residency, should be supported by proof.

Alternative Migration Pathways(similar visas)

Prospective skilled migrants have various immigration choices, including nomination for the Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491).
You will receive various visas, including employer-nominated temporary and permanent visas. You could also choose to consult a licenced migration agent for advice.

Onshore Applicants

The following documentation must be provided to demonstrate compliance with the rules if you are onshore and invited to apply:

  • Passport
  • Post Description
  • Employment contract
  • Payslips from the last four weeks
  • Superannuation statement
  • English language test
  • Residence proof

Offshore Applicants

You may file a Registration of Interest for any qualified occupation overseas. However, we encourage individuals in other professions to submit a Registration of Interest as you may be considered. Health occupations will be given high priority.

Offshore applicants must provide the following documentation:

  • English proficiency test
  • Skills evaluation
  • Passport

Once You Are Nominated

As soon as you are nominated, you can expect an email to inform you about the decision. From then on, you need to follow the instructions below:

  • Submit your visa application to the Department of Home Affairs within 60 days. You cannot be nominated again if your visa application is not submitted within this duration.
  • Update your contact information so that you can stay informed about relevant services.
  • Participate in surveys about your time in Victoria and your interactions with us.
  • Make a two-year commitment to residing and working in Victoria.
  • Fully commit to spending the period of your visa living and working in regional Victoria.

Can You Include Your Family?

Any dependent children or stepchildren and Spouses can also be listed in an application for a 491 visa if they meet the health guidelines of the Australian Government as well as the below criteria:

For Spouses:

  • Your marital or de facto partner could be the same gender as you or the opposite. Applicants must demonstrate that their relationship is authentic and ongoing and that they either live together or would not live apart permanently.
  • Your partner must be a minimum of 18 years old during the submission of the application(exceptions may be there)
  • You don’t share any blood relative (if you are in a de facto relationship)
  • You and your partner should be mutually dedicated to living a life together at the expense of everyone else.

For Children:
A child must meet the following requirements to be added or included on this visa:

  • They should not be married, be engaged to be married, or have a de facto partner.
  • They should be your child or a stepchild from a current or previous relationship (in certain circumstances)
  • They should be under 18 years old.
  • They are eligible if they are over 18 years old but have not yet turned 23.
  • If they are over 23 years old but unable to earn a living to support themselves due to physical or cognitive limitations and are dependent on you

CONTACT US FOR 491 VISA IMMIGRATION AGENT

We, here at E-Help, specialize in applying for visas; if you are looking to secure a 491 visa in Brisbane, we can be of immense help. Let E-Help provide you with a one-stop solution for all aspects of Australian immigration, Contact us.

FAQs

1Am I eligible for a 491 visa?

You can be eligible for a 491 visa if you meet the occupation criteria, point score requirements, requirements set by Home Affairs for this visa subclass, and residency requirements.

  • Should have a minimum of 65 points
  • A statement of interest is required (EOI)
  • Must be able to speak English well
  • Must have a good character
  • A statement of interest is required (EOI)
  • You must reply to the email inviting EOI nominations.
  • Your age should be less than 45

You can contact our experts at E-Help for further information or queries.

2Who can apply for the visa?

The following are required to apply for a Subclass 491 visa.

  • You need to be invited to apply and must meet the following criteria
  • A state or territory government agency should nominate you, or an eligible relative must sponsor you
  • You should have a job on a relevant skilled occupation list
  • An appropriate skills assessment for the job at the time of the invitation;
  • You must have at least proficient English.
  • Must not have had an earlier application denied or a visa cancelled (if applying from onshore)
3What Does This Visa Allow You To Do?

The 491 visa has quite a few benefits for you and your family, as stated below:

  • Processing of regional applications with priority
  • Incentives for immigrants to remain in regional areas for a longer period
  • Additional points are available to applicants for subclass 491 visas.
  • Reside in Australia for 5 years
  • Live, study, and work in an Australian regional area that has been defined.
  • During the validity of the visa, you may enter and exit Australia as often as you choose
  • Utilise the Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) visa to apply for permanent residence (Subclass 191)
  • Work for any employer in any profession as long as it complies with your visa’s work and residency requirements.
  • Being qualified for Medicare
4What are some common reasons applications are declined?

Some fundamental issues that may lead to the rejection of your application are:

  • You are not qualified to use their EOI’s full number of points.
  • You fail to meet the residence requirement
  • You have claimed excess employment points.
5How Points Are Allocated For Subclass 491?

The applicant’s age determines the points, education, job history (overseas and in Australia), proficiency in English, and Australian studies. However, the following categories allow for the addition of points.

  • 15 points– Applicants sponsored by a family member living in rural Australia or nominated by a State or Territory government.
  • 10 Points– Skilled Spouse or De-facto Partner.
  • 10 points– If the applicant does not have a spouse or de facto partner or if the applicant does, and that person is either an Australian citizen or a permanent resident.
  • 10 points – Accomplishments in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) courses.
  • 5 points– Candidates with a spouse or de facto partner who is an English-speaking but non-citizen of Australia or a permanent resident.
6How to apply for Subclass 491 Visa?

The application process for a subclass 491 visa includes many steps:

  • Verify if your chosen occupation is on the Australian Government’s annual list of Skilled Occupations.
  • Request an evaluation of your skill set from the relevant Australian organisations.
  • To be eligible, you must receive 65 points on these examinations.
  • Submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) to the Department of Home Affairs. After carefully evaluating those 65 criteria.
  • After your EOI is approved, the Department of Home Affairs requests that you apply for candidacy. Within 60 days, you must turn in your supporting documentation. It is preferable to gather your supporting documents in advance.
  • You’ll get an email after your application has been received. Once your visa application is confirmed, you can anticipate receiving an email with your grant number, the start date of your visa, and the terms and restrictions of your visa.
7Is Australia Open for 491 Visa?

The 489 visa had been replaced by the subclass 491 Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa starting on 16th November 2019.

8Is a 491 visa still available?

The 491 Visa Migration Program is now open for eligible applications. You can consult our professionals at E-Help in case of any further queries or issues regarding visa applications.

9Which state is best for 491?

NSW can be considered one of the most well-known states for skilled migration programmes and employer sponsorship. This fact makes it highly sought after by immigrants. Regarding skilled visas 491 and 190, you are not required to be employed in your specified profession to qualify for a visa under either programme.

10Is Qld open for 491 Visa?

The Migration Queensland (MQ) Program has been open to both onshore and offshore applicants since 16th August 2022.

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