Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186)


This visa is for skilled workers from outside Australia or skilled temporary residents who live and work in Australia. It has three streams.

  • The Temporary Residence Transition stream is for subclass 457 visa holders who have worked for two years and their employer wants to offer them a permanent position.
  • The Direct Entry stream is for people who have never, or only briefly, worked in the Australian labour market.
  • The Agreement stream is for people sponsored by an employer through a labour or regional migration agreement.


People can apply for this visa if they:

  • Have been nominated by an approved Australian employer
  • Are less than 50 years of age.
  • Meet the skills, qualifications and English language requirements

How Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186) visa works

The Employer Nomination Scheme visa (subclass 186) is for skilled workers from outside Australia or skilled temporary residents who currently live and work in Australia. It is part of the permanent Employer Sponsored visa program.

To apply for this visa, you must:

  • Be nominated by an approved employer
  • Be younger than 50 years of age
  • Meet the skills and qualifications requirements
  • Meet English language requirements

There are exemptions relating to age, skills and English language ability. These depend on your nominated occupation, salary and past work experience.

If you do not have an employer who will nominate you, you can lodge an Expression of Interest through SkillSelect. Employers and state and territory governments can then view your details and decide whether to nominate you for skilled migration.

If you owe the Australian Government money, you may not be eligible to be granted a visa until you have made arrangements to pay the debt.