Australia is a country that witnesses the maximum changes in its immigration sector. Today, the following write-up is going to acquaint you with another significant immigration change in Australia. This includes the substitution of the 489 visa by the visa subclass 491 for offshore applicants. In this context, given below are some of the prominent features which you didn’t know about the 491 visa.
When was the 491 Visa introduced?
The States and Territory Governments could nominate and invite applicants for the 489 visa on 10th September, 2019 last. After this 15th of November, 2019 was considered the last for applicants to apply for the 489 visa. The first date to apply for the 491 visa lawfully was considered 16th November, 2020. To do this each of the applicants was required to submit an Expression Of Interest to the DoHA. State and Territory Governments were also permitted to nominate and invite applicants on this date.
Noteworthy changes in the points system of the visa subclass 491
The Department of Home Affairs has made a few changes in the points system of the 491 visa. According to this each of the applicants will get additional points just like the other General Skilled Migration Visas. So, given below are some of the points-oriented changes which the Australian Visa 491 is witnessing right now.
- Applicants with special STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) skills and knowledge will get additional 10 points.
- The de facto partner or spouse of the applicant will get additional 5 points if he/she is applying.
- Applicants who don’t have a spouse will get additional 10 points. This privilege will be applicable to those whose partner is a permanent or native resident of Australia.
- 15 points are given to those who are selected by a State or Territory government sponsorship or office. This privilege is also offered to applicants any of whose acquaintances stays in provincial Australia. Before the points were 10 for applicants pertaining to this category.
Remember, that you should be selected by an Australian state or territory government agency when applying for the 491 visa. If not, then you should at least be selected by an eligible family members staying in a designated Australia area.
Who can apply?
The 491 visa is a points-based visa to aid the employment sector of Australia with skilled overseas workers. You must be nominated by a state or territory government agency of Australia. Alternatively, you must be selected by any of your family members residing in a designated regional area.
The distinctive features of the 491 visa subclass
The 491 regional visa allows you to stay in Australia for not more than 5 years. Earlier the duration would be 4 years. The 491 visa also allows you to apply for a Permanent Residency in Australia. There is a particular criterion for doing this. This requires you apply for your PR visa after living in Australia for 3 years with your 491 visa. While holding this visa you are also allowed to move within some of the provincial Australian regions.
These places include Perth, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Melbourne and Sydney. Around 16,000 places comprising regional Australia will be provided with 504 eligible occupations every year. The best part is these places are getting an additional 77 occupations to offer to their offshore applicants. This is complete contrast as compared to the applicants applying for visas for the non-regional areas of Australia.
Important Visa Conditions
According to the various conditions of the 491 visa, the visa holders have to comply with certain criteria. This first requires the visa holder to be selected for a regional area of Australia. There the applicant can work, live, and study for 5 years. If your visa is employer-sponsored then you should work only for your nominated occupation and in your nominated area.
Check out your eligibility
So, do you wish to apply for the 491 as well? If so, then there are certain criteria, meeting which you will become eligible to apply for the 491 visa. You should be selected by a substantial occupation comprising the Skilled Occupation List of Australia. You must be invited by the Department of Home Affairs as well before you apply. To do this you must have submitted an Expression of Interest (EOI) to the DoHA.
Other eligibility criteria
The 491 visa also requires you to crack the points-based test by securing the desired score. When it comes to age, you should be less than 45 years. Australia is a country that puts the utmost stress on the English language. So, you should prove that you have a reasonable knowledge of English. Besides, you should be selected by a state or territory government agency. On the contrary, you should be selected by any of your eligible relatives.
Well, not any relative is eligible to nominate you for the 491 visa. Some of the relatives who are eligible include your grant parents, cousins, parents, siblings and uncle or aunt.
What is the cost of the 491 visa?
The cost of the 491 visa is AU$4,045. So, after the application of your Skilled Regional Provisional Visa Subclass 491 is complete, you need to pay this amount.
How is the 491 visa different?
As you already know that the 491 visa has until recently replaced the 48 visa w.e.f 16th November 2020. Earlier in the case of the 489 visa, the applicant wasn’t required to qualify in the points-based test. Conversely, the 491 visa requires you to qualify in a particular points-based test by securing the desired score.
Who can help?
So, hopefully, you too want to apply for the visa subclass 491 now. Before you do that you should get valuable tips and advice from an immigration professional. This is the reason for which you should contact an accomplished visa agent Adelaide right now. Starting from gathering the proper documents till the final approval of your 491 visa, he/she will assist you comprehensively. So, what are you waiting for? Hire a knowledgeable Migration Agent Adelaide and apply for your 491 visa effortlessly.