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Employer Nomination Scheme Subclass 186

Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) visas, or subclass 186 visas, are permanent residency visas for eligible skilled overseas workers. Applicants who are already living and working in Australia as temporary residents, and to those living outside Australia can apply for this visa. To be eligible for this visa, a skilled worker must be nominated by an Australian employer.

There are no conditions with this visa, your dependent family member may also be included. As an Australian permanent resident, you can live and work wherever you like and once granted you are not obliged to maintain employment in your occupation. 


Main Criteria for a SUBCLASS 186 VISA

The subclass 186 visa has three streams, the Temporary Residence Transition (TRT) Stream, the Direct Entry (DE) Stream and the Labour Agreement Stream. Each stream has different criteria.

To make an application in the TRT stream, you must be the holder of a subclass 457 visa, a 482 visa, or a bridging visa granted in association with one of these subclasses.

To be eligible you will need to satisfy the following conditions:

  • You have worked for the same sponsor for three years on a 482 visa
  • You have worked in the same occupation for the three years on the 482 visa
  • You hold a score of at least 6.0 in all parts of the IELTS (or equivalent test), unless exempt)
  • You have been paid at least the salary on your nomination letter
  • You are under 45 years of age at the time of lodging your PR visa

You must be nominated by your 482 sponsor. You cannot apply independently for a 186 visa


The Direct Entry stream allows applicants who do not meet the requirements of the Temporary Residence Transition stream to be nominated by an employer for Permanent Residence. You may be in or outside of Australia when you make the application.

To be approved under the Direct Entry stream:

the employer must meet the following criteria:

  • be actively and lawfully operating in Australia
  • meet the relevant training requirements
  • have no adverse information against it

the nominated position must:

  • be a genuine position
  • be a full-time position available for a minimum of two (2) years from the time the visa is granted
  • be for an occupation listed on the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL)
  • provide terms and conditions no less favourable than those afforded to Australian citizens and Permanent Residents performing similar roles

the visa applicant must:

  • be under 50 years of age
  • demonstrate Competent English
  • hold a successful skills assessment for your nominated occupation from the relevant assessing authority (unless exempted)
  • have at least three (3) years of highly relevant work experience
  • meet relevant health and character requirements.


The Labour Agreement stream is for applicants who are nominated by an employer who has entered into a Labour Agreement negotiated and agreed to be the Australian Government.

Applicants under this stream need to meet the age, skills and English language requirements provided under the relevant Agreement, in addition to relevant health and character requirements.

The above list is not intended to be exhaustive and further eligibility requirements do apply.

For more information or to see if you qualify, please make an enquiry with one of our qualified and experienced Migration Consultants.


During our consultation we will assess your eligibility for a partner visa, we will also inform you of all the requirements, the process and create a strategy for you.
Once we have determined that you are your employer satisfy the criteria for nomination and visa application for a 186 visa then we proceed with collecting the required documentary evidence for the business and the visa applicant.
We prepare the nomination application and quality check for lodgement with the department.
The final step in the process is to prepare the visa application, quality check it and lodge with the department.