In the recent swing of new rulings and implementations prompted by the Department of Home Affairs, the Skilled Regional Provisional (sub-class 489) visa has also seen some major over haul. These changes are in the backdrop of the former points increase in Australian Skilled Migration visa streams by up to 5 points. Many of the occupations were added in the 489 category while many other were either eliminated or moved to the short term/medium term occupation requirements lists.
Whilst much attention has been given to the changes in the employer sponsored program, exciting changes were made to the Regional Occupations List (ROL) for the Skilled Regional (Provisional) subclass 489 visa.
59 occupations were added to this ROL including the following which were removed from all occupation lists in 2017:
Human Resource Advisor
Vocational Education Teacher
Financial Institution Branch Manager
This is a positive outcome for many human resource specialists who were left without a migration pathway and with the addition of Policy Analyst seems to benefit those working in the areas of academic, research and policy who have previously found employer sponsorship difficult.
The subclass 489 is a provisional, or temporary, visa valid for up to 4 years but, offers a pathway to the Skilled Regional subclass 887 visa, a permanent residence visa. The 489 visa holder would be required to meet relevant criteria including maintain residence in a regional area of Australia for at least 2 years, whilst working a minimum of 35 hours per week in any occupation, in a regional area of Australia for at least 12 months.
Benefits of a subclass 489 visa application:
Traditionally, skilled foreign nationals have transitioned from a Student visa or Graduate Work/Post Study Work visa to permanent residence under the General Skilled Migration program; either with a Skilled Nominated subclass 190 or Skilled Independent subclass 189 visa.
However, it has become increasingly difficult for many to secure the Government invitations required to lodge those subclass 190 or subclass 189 applications, putting at risk their ability to maintain lawful immigration.
The benefits of submitting a subclass 489 visa application can include:
The pass mark required is 65 points including points awarded for State nomination. However, in cases where demand exceeds supply, the applicant will find they need a higher point score to increase their chances of getting an invitation from the Government, before making the relevant visa application
In many cases, invitations to apply for a 489 visa has been issued quickly, providing the nominated region agrees to sponsor the applicant.
The regional work experience required to meet one of the criteria for the 887 visa may be in any occupation and can include casual jobs if the combined hours of employment equate to at least 35 hours a week.
There is no requirement to pass a points test in order to transition to the 887 visa, the permanent stage of the 489 visa. However, there are legislative criteria which must be met.
There is no English language requirement when transitioning to the 887 visa.
Whilst the 489 visa requires the applicant to be under 45 years of age, at the time of application, there is no age requirement when transitioning to the 887 visa.
The full list of 489 ROL occupations are as follows:
Public relations manager
Policy and planning manager
Regional education manager
Caravan park and camping ground manager
Post office manager
Amusement center manager
Fitness center manager
Sports center manager
Cinema or theatre manager
Financial institution branch manager
Human resource adviser
Workplace relations adviser
Market research analyst
Aero plane pilot
Vocational education teacher
Environmental health officer
Intellectual property lawyer
Community arts worker
Operating theatre technician
Surveying or spatial science technician
Mechanical engineering draftsperson
Building and engineering technicians
Electrical lines worker
Gas or petroleum operator
Emergency service worker
First aid trainer
Real estate representative
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