Australian Skilled Visas (189) Visa Guide

189 visas

Australian Skilled Worker Visas

The 189 visa is the premier visa Australia has to offer for skilled workers. The main advantage is that it provides permanent residency on arrival. This affords the holder and their family peace of mind and security for the future. Being a visa for life the holder and their family are free to live and work anywhere in Australia, have access to free education, medicare and can make pension contributions. There are also no restrictions on the property the holder can purchase. Once you hold a 189 visa for Australia you really can relax knowing Australia is your new home.

Proposed changes to the 189 Visa

Currently, the Australian government is reviewing the policy allowing permanent residency on arrival and wants to introduce a probationary period after arrival. The proposed change would require all new migrants to complete a 2 years probationary period in Australia before becoming eligible for permanent residency and all the benefits permanent residency provides.

If these proposed changes are applied, it will remove the most attractive element of the 189 visa. Therefore, we recommend you to file your case as soon as possible if you wish to avoid future disruption to your plans.

Complete our Free Assessment to see if you are eligible to emigrate 

To secure a 189 visa a person must be invited to apply from the Expression Of Interest pool. After filling an E.O.I, the immigration case is evaluated on several criteria set by the Australian Government ranging from your skills and experience, family history to your character and health. Australia is clear in who they want to invite and even though each case is unique and dealt with on its own individual merits how a case is present to the Australian government remains paramount to its success.

Watch a programme on Brits who have already emigrated to Australia 

Why Your Application Needs To Be Visa Ready On Application

The 189 visa requires every case to be "visa ready" prior to submission. To apply a person must achieve 60 points on the skilled visa calculator (our assessment will calculate your points) they must also have a profession in demand and listed on the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) replaced the previous ‘Skilled Occupation List’ (SOL) or the Short-term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL). Then their case is entered into a competitive pool of similar candidates all hoping to be selected for a 189 visa. There is no room for "horse trading" with the immigration officer who is deciding on who to select from the pool and who to leave behind. An officer will simply put a case to one side and move on to the next if they are not satisfied with everything they see on their first inspection. This visa allows people like you to live and work freely in Australia and allows them to take employment of their choice.  It also allows them to bring their immediate family who can enjoy all the advantages of Australian life. Competition and demand is high.


The Australian General Skilled Immigration System works on a point based system which takes into account several factors.

  •     Age
  •    Qualifications
  •     English Language Ability
  •     Experience In Your Profession
  •     Record Of Prior Learning In Australia And Off Shore
  •     Previous Study or Employment In Australia
  •     Your Spouse Skills If Applicable
  •     Your skills must be in demand - To find out if your skills are on the list complete our free assessment

Based on these criteria a person will earn points and will be required to achieve 60 points to be eligible to submit an expression of interest to emigrate.  If you do not achieve 60 points you may like to apply for a State Sponsored visa or 190 visas.

Skilled Worker Statistics:

190,000 places available this year across Australia for Skilled workers

  • 68% of migrants arrive in Australia on this visa
  • 42% of all visa applications are rejected
  • 32% of migrant workers arrive on a Family class visa

Take advice from our experts and protect your future plans.


There are of course a number of factors you can not affect regardless of how effective we are at developing a perfect case.  Age is the obvious one but the others are always possible to improve no matter how good your case; with a little effort we can always make it better.  The following are ways we have improved cases that have fallen short prior to putting in some effort.


A classic one is completing an English Test if you hold a UK passport, or some others, you may not need to complete an English test to qualify to enter Australia however if you do complete your test to a superior level this action provides an immediate additional 20 points to your case.  Many cases can achieve 60 points easily just from securing the additional points.  We assist our clients in finding the right test centre and providing guidance on ensuring they achieve maximum points.


This area is the most complex of all and carries a large number of issues, pitfalls and dangers but likewise, it also has huge opportunities for improvement.  Often our clients are fantastic in their role and know how to do their job way above the Australian standards.  Like many exams it is not necessarily what you have done previously, or even what you know, but how you present that knowledge to the assessors.  Our team work hard in this area as we understand it is the foundation of everything that comes later in your 189 visa case.  There's little point being amazing if you fail to present the facts in a clear and impressive way.  Assessors are busy people and they will not give the benefit of the doubt, it is also commercially advantageous for them by securing more fees if you need to re-apply once rejected!


It is not enough to have a glowing reference but again it matters what that reference says and how it is presented.  We have had many calls over the years from people who could not understand why their assessment was rejected or why they could not attract an Australian Employer, one look at their references allowed us to see the issues.  Never assume a reference meets the Australian employer's requirements or the Australian Immigration needs.  A CV is a document often embellished without documentary evidence to support each claim made.  It is important for Australian Immigration purposes that we prepare your references, not only to support your CV but to enhance it.

Other Factors

This is where the internet falls over a little as we start to go into specific needs of individual cases.  No two people or cases are ever the same as we mentioned previously and only by understand a persons history and background fully can we develop a winning case. We advise people not to rush in; take your time to ensure you build a case based on your core strengths to avoid any future issues.

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