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Employer Nomination Scheme Visa (Subclass 186)

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The Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) visa, known as the Subclass 186 visa, offers permanent residency to skilled workers sponsored by employers who have a genuine need for an ongoing permanent position.

What is the Subclass 186 Visa?

  • The ENS visa is a permanent residency visa for skilled workers sponsored by employers in Australia, catering to individuals who meet specific eligibility criteria and are nominated by an Australian employer.

Temporary Transition Stream Update

  • Breaking News – Effective from 25 November 2023, all Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) Subclass 482 visa holders will be eligible for ENS visas sponsored by their employers, irrespective of their occupation list. Sponsored visa holders become eligible for ENS Temporary Transition Stream after two years of sponsorship on a TSS 482 visa, reduced from three years.

Subclass 186 Visa Eligibility Requirements

The Subclass 186 visa has six general requirements for all applicants, along with specific criteria based on the chosen stream:
•    Nomination by an Australian Employer: Approved within six months before application.
•    Age Requirement: Under 45 years, unless exempted.
•    Skills and Qualifications: Must match the nominated position's requirements.
•    English Language Skills: Must meet specified competency levels.
•    Health and Character: Must meet health and character requirements.
•    Stream-Specific Requirements: Varies based on the selected stream.

Three Pathways for ENS Visa Application

​•    Temporary Residence Transition (TRT) Stream: For applicants on a TSS 482 visa for the last two years.
•    Direct Entry Stream: Available if TRT criteria aren't met, requiring a formal skills assessment and three years of skilled work.
•    Agreement Stream: Specifically for TSS visa holders sponsored under a Labour Agreement.

ENS 186 Visa Application Stages

•    Nomination Stage: Involves reviewing the employer's operations and the offered position.
•    Visa Application Stage: Applicants must meet various requirements including age, language, skills, character, and health.

Processing Time for ENS Subclass 186 Visa
essing times vary depending on the stream:

•    Direct Entry Stream: 90% of applications processed within 11 months.
•    Labour Agreement Stream: 90% of applications processed within 11 months.
•    Transition Pathway: 90% of applications processed within 12 months.

Employer/Sponsor Requirements

  • Businesses nominating a skilled worker for a Subclass 186 visa must adhere to specific criteria, including lawful operation, genuine need for a skilled position, offering full-time employment, paying market salary rates, and compliance with Australian laws.

Frequently Asked Questions

​•    Visa Cost: Main applicant - AUD$4,640.00; spouse - $2,320.00; children under 18 - $1,160.00.
•    English Language Requirement: Various tests with minimum score requirements.
•    Post-Visa Approval Benefits: Permanent residency, work, study, Medicare enrolment, sponsorship eligibility, and travel flexibility.
•    Visa Cancellation: Conditions related to employment and visa breaches.

ENS 186 Visa to Citizenship

Transitioning from the ENS 186 visa to Australian citizenship involves residing in Australia as a permanent resident for four years, including 12 months as a permanent resident. After five years, if you've lived in Australia for at least two years, you can renew your visa or pursue Australian citizenship. Time spent under the ENS visa counts towards the required residency for citizenship eligibility

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