Employer Nominated Scheme Subclass 186 visa

Employers can nominate an employee for a 186 visa if they are already sponsoring them on a 482 visa.

Employer Nominated Scheme (ENS) subclass 186 visa is a skilled visa that offers permanent residency. Eligible employers can sponsor an employee for permanent residency through the Employer Nominated Scheme.

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There are 3 ways to apply for a Employer Nominated 186 visa:

Temporary Residence Transition Stream

This stream allows employers to sponsor an employee they have already sponsored for a 482 visa. The employee must:

  • Be under 45 years old (some exceptions apply).
  • Have worked in Australia for 3 years, with at least 2 years in the same job for the sponsoring employer.
  • Occupations do not need to be on a skilled occupation list but must be listed on the ANZSCO list.

Direct Entry Stream

Applicants usually apply for the 186 visa through the Direct Entry Stream from outside Australia. However, they can apply from within Australia if they hold a substantive visa or a related bridging visa (A, B, or C). Employers must:

  • Nominate the position to the Department and meet the nominating criteria.
  • Ensure the candidate is under 45 years old (some exceptions apply).
  • Ensure the candidate passes a skills assessment.

Labour Agreement Stream

Skilled workers can apply through this stream if their employer has a labour agreement with the Australian government.

How to Sponsor an Employee for a 186 Visa

There are 4 main steps:

Step 1: Establish Eligibility

To sponsor an employee for a 186 visa, your employers must:

    • Provide the employment contract.
    • Prove your business is actively and lawfully operating in Australia.
    • Show a genuine need for a paid employee to fill the position.
    • Ensure the salary meets the annual market rate.
    • Pay the Skilling Australians Fund levy when submitting the nomination application.

Step 2: Nominate the Position and Candidate

Through the Employer Nominated Scheme, the employer nominates a position from the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL). The employer must:

    • Pay the candidate at least the annual market salary rate unless they earn more than AUD 250,000 per year.
    • Ensure the candidate has the required license, registration, or membership.
    • Prove the business need for the position.
    • Offer a full-time position lasting at least 2 years.
    • Comply with Australian immigration and workplace laws.

Step 3: Nomination Approval

The Immigration Department approves the nomination.

Step 4: Candidate Submits Visa Application

For a candidate to qualify for the ENS 186 visa, they must:

    • Show qualifications and experience in the nominated occupation.
    • Pass English language requirements, typically an IELTS score of 6 (unless from the UK, Ireland, Canada, New Zealand, or the US).
    • Pass character and health checks.

Costs Involved

Nomination Costs

It does not cost anything to nominate an employee for a 186 visa, but there is a Skilling Australia Fund levy.

186 Visa Costs

The government fee for the 186 visa is AUD 540.

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