In Australia, the ENS 186 visa stands for Employer Nomination Scheme visa. The Subclass ENS 186 is a permanent visa. As the name suggests, employers can nominate skilled employees under this visa. This allows the skilled employee to live and work in Australia permanently.
As this is a sponsored visa, there are many conditions that you should be familiar with. This applies to both the visa sponsor, as well as the visa applicant. In our article below, we outline some key points in relation to the ENS visa 186.
Applicants for ENS 186 visa can either be outside of Australia, or already working onshore in Australia. Once the applicant holds the 186 visa, as they are permanent residency visas, they can:
- study and work in Australia without restrictions,
- enrol in Medicare,
- travel to and from Australia for 5 years (after that they can apply for a resident return visa for traveling outside Australia)
- sponsor their relatives to come to Australia
- if eligible, apply for Australian citizenship
Australian ENS 186 Visa
There are different streams under the ENS 186 visa. This includes:
- Direct Entry Stream
- Temporary Residence Transition Stream
- Labour Agreement Stream
Direct Entry Stream
Typically, occupations under the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skill List (MLTSSL) are eligible for the Direct Entry Stream of ENS 186. The first step for acquiring this visa is that the employer has to nominate the applicant.
They have to nominate an applicant for a skilled position. The applicant will need a positive skills assessment in that nominated occupation. For example, consider that an Agricultural Scientist (occupation code: 234112) is looking for a ENS 186 visa. If they have any employer in Australia who is willing to sponsor them, their employer must nominate them for a skilled position under the occupation of Agricultural Scientist.
Temporary Residence Transition Stream
Only applicants who already had a nomination for another visa in Australia can be eligible for the TRT stream under ENS 186 subclass. To qualify for the TRT stream, you must have held the Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS 482) visa. Previously, employees who held the Subclass 457 visa (closed for new applicants) could also be eligible for TRT stream.
Labour Agreement Stream
This is relevant only for applicants who wish to work for employers who are a part of labour agreements. Labour agreements are agreements between the employer and the Australian Government. Essentially, this allows the employer to recruit a number of skilled workers from overseas.
Additionally, the agreement must:
- specify the number of skilled workers needed from overseas;
- identify the skilled shortage, and why these shortages cannot be filled by Australian workers
- state the English language requirements, skills and age that relate to the specific nominated occupation.
Types of Labour Agreements:
- project agreements
- designation area migration agreements (DAMA)
How to Apply for Subclass 186 Visa?
Depending on the specific stream under the visas, the application process may vary slightly. However, there are some general eligibility criteria to consider. Firstly, you must have a sponsor. Employers sponsor skilled workers for this visa. This includes a nomination from an Australian employer.
Moreover, the applicant must have at least 3 years’ work experience in the nominated occupation.
The primary applicant must be under the age of 45 when applying for the visa. There could be exemptions for the age limit, depending on some circumstances and depending on which specific stream of the 186 the applicant is applying for.
For example, for the 186 visa under Direct Entry stream, the applicant can be over 45 years of age if:
- they are nominated by an Australian university as an academic;
- they are nominated as a technical specialist, scientist, or researcher;
- they hold a New Zealand subclass 444 or 461 visa and have been working for their nominated for two years.
Additionally, as part of the application process, there are other criteria to satisfy. This includes health and character requirements.
TSS 482 to 186 Visa: 2023 Update
The DHA announced that by the end of 2023, all temporary skill shortage (SC 482) visa holders will be eligible for the 186 visa. This is regardless of whether their occupation falls under the short-term, medium and long-term skills list, or the regional occupation list.
This is advantageous for many as the 186 is a permanent residency visa. By transitioning to 186, parties can enjoy all benefits of being an Australian permanent resident.
Note: Check if you meet all criteria to transition to the SC 186 visa from SC 482 visa. We recommend that you speak with a lawyer who can help you with this.
Seeking Advice from Immigration Lawyers
Whether you are a sponsor or a visa applicant, it is important to speak with experienced migration lawyers who can help you with making nominations and lodging applications.
If you are lodging an application for student visa, work visa, employer sponsored visa, partner visa, or application for permanent residence, our team can help you with the application processes.
Our lawyers can provide a wide range of services. We can:
- Assess clients’ eligibility for various visas and provide guidance on the most suitable visa options for their specific circumstances.
- Assist clients in preparing and submitting visa applications accurately and timely, reducing the risk of rejection.
- Ensure that clients meet all legal requirements and comply with immigration laws, avoiding potential legal issues.
- Help navigate the appeal or review process (in case of visa rejection), increasing the chances of a successful outcome.
- Provide legal representation for clients seeking asylum or refugee status, ensuring they receive fair and compassionate treatment.
- Assist clients in obtaining necessary skills assessments, a crucial step in the skilled visa application process.
- Help clients reunite with family members in Australia by navigating family migration pathways
- Guide clients and employers through the process of sponsoring and hiring foreign workers, ensuring compliance with regulations.
- Assist clients in establishing and managing businesses or investments in Australia, facilitating investor visas.
- Help clients extend or renew their visas, ensuring ongoing legal status in Australia.
For any enquiry or to make a visa application, contact our team of experts today.