Skilled Work Regional visa (subclass 491)

Opening of 491 program to be announced shortly

Applications for NSW nomination for the Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491) will soon be open.

There is currently a delay in the program opening in NSW.

We will announce when NSW is open to applications shortly.

We are unable to provide further guidance via phone or email at this time.

Payment links will be made available on this website after applications have opened. Any documents submitted before applications have opened will not be considered.

The 491 visa will be managed entirely within the NSW Government and applications can be made directly to NSW Treasury.

NSW nominates applicants for the 491 visa to support the regional industries and economies of NSW through the provision of skilled talent.

NSW’s management of the new 491 visa aims to deliver strong, strategic outcomes for regional NSW.

NSW Government has a strong commitment to regional growth and the 491 visa will sit alongside several other government initiatives that aim to increase regional NSW’s attraction as a highly desirable place to live, work and do business.

The occupations eligible for NSW nomination are selected to meet the skills needs of the NSW economy across a range of industry sectors. We will regularly update these occupations according to the skills needs in NSW.

Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491)

The Commonwealth Department of Home Affairs announced this new points-tested visa to assist regional Australia, for applicants with an eligible skilled occupation, nominated by a state or territory government agency which came into effect in November 2019.

The new Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491) has replaced the Skilled Regional Nominated visa (subclass 489).

Specific details regarding eligible occupations and postcodes designated as regional areas can be found on the Department of Home Affairs’ website.

About this visa

The new Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491) will enable eligible skilled workers and their families to live, work and study in designated regional areas of Australia for five years. Visa holders will be eligible to apply for a Permanent Residence visa after three years. Applicants for this visa must be nominated by an Australian state or territory government agency or sponsored by an eligible family member residing in a designated regional area and be invited to apply for the visa, following submission of an Expression of Interest (EOI) in SkillSelect.

Eligibility

Applicants must:

  • have a relevant occupation on a skilled occupation list;
  • have a suitable skills assessment for the occupation;
  • satisfy the points test;
  • be under 45 years of age at the time of nomination;
  • have Competent English;
  • submit an Expression of Interest via SkillSelect;
  • be nominated by a state or territory government agency, and
  • meet public interest criteria including health and character requirements

NSW nomination requirements

Before submitting an EOI, please review the NSW nomination requirements relevant to your circumstances to confirm your eligibility.

  • I'm living and working in regional NSW
  • I'm offshore
  • I've recently completed study in regional NSW

If you do not currently meet NSW nomination requirements, please be aware these requirements and occupations are subject to change.

Your situationRequirements

I’m living and working in regional NSW

1.  Your nominated occupation is on the NSW Stream 1 Regional Skilled Occupation List

and;

2.  You have been working in a designated regional area in NSW in your nominated occupation, or a closely related occupation*, for at least the last 12 months

and;

3.  You have been living in a designated regional area in NSW, for at least the last 12 months.

I’m offshore (outside of Australia)

1.  Your nominated occupation is on the NSW Stream 2 Regional Skilled Occupation List

and;

2.  You are residing outside Australia, and;

a)  You have an offer for ongoing employment in a designated regional area in NSW, from an employer who is registered in Australia, and;

  • the offer of employment is in your nominated, or a closely related occupation*, and;
  • the offer of employment is for a minimum of 12 months and for 35 hours per week.

or;

b)  You have at least five years of skilled employment in your nominated occupation, or a closely related occupation*

or;

c)  You have an immediate family member living in a designated regional area in NSW.

I’ve recently completed study in regional NSW

1.  Your nominated occupation is on the NSW Stream 2 Regional Skilled Occupation List

and;

2.  You have completed study at an education provider, or education providers, located in a designated regional area in NSW, and;

  • the study was continuous and meets the Australian study requirement, and;
  • you have lived in a designated regional area in NSW while completing this study, and;
  • the study was completed within the last 12 months, and;
  • the qualification from your study has been assessed as closely related to your nominated occupation* by the relevant assessing authority.

and;

3.  You have been living in a designated regional area in NSW, for at least the last 12 months.

*an occupation within the same Australian Bureau of Statistics ANZSCO Unit Group.

How to apply for NSW nomination

Please visit our How to apply and application forms information.

489 visa participating NSW regions

NSW previously worked in partnership with participating Regional Development Authorities (RDA) committees in NSW to deliver and Skilled Regional Nominated visa (subclass 489) program.

There were nine regions that participated in NSW's 489 visa program:

RDAs in NSW will not be participating in the Skilled Work Regional visa (subclass 491).

RDA committees will continue to support regional employers in NSW and their skill needs through responsibilities as a Regional Certifying Body (RCB) in the new Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 494) .