Skilled Employer Sponsored Visa Subclass 494

The Australian Skilled Employer Sponsored (Regional) Visa, subclass 494, is one of the new visas. Subclass 187 of the RSMS Visa has been superseded. Employers are able to designate skilled personnel with this new temporary employer-sponsored visa.

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Is Permanent Residency Granted by Subclass 494?

The Skilled Employer Sponsored (Regional) Visa (subclass 494) does not directly grant permanent residency. However, holders of this visa may become eligible for the Skilled Regional Permanent Residency Visa (subclass 191) in the future.


Employer Criteria

Below are key points of the criteria for employers:

  • The employer must operate in a designated regional area of Australia.
  • Regions like Adelaide, Canberra, Gold Coast, Geelong, Perth, and Sunshine Coast are considered regional areas. Areas such as Wollongong, Newcastle, and New South Wales Central Coast are expected to be classified as regional areas soon.
  • For skilled workers, the job position must be on the relevant occupation list, which currently includes over 700 occupations.
  • Employers must obtain approval from the Regional Certifying Body (RCB) in their area before nominating a candidate.
  • The job position must be genuine, full-time, and available for five years.
  • The salary offered must be consistent with the market salary rate.


Eligibility Criteria for Skilled Workers

  • Hold a skills assessment.
  • Have at least 3 years of relevant full-time work experience.
  • Be under 45 years of age.
  • Provide proof of Competent English.


Can the Subclass 494 Visa Lead to Permanent Residency?

The Subclass 494 visa is valid for five years and offers a pathway to permanent residency through the Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) Visa – Subclass 191. To be eligible for PR, applicants must satisfy specific requirements, including:

  • Working in a specified regional area for three years on the 494 visa
  • Submitting proof of three years of annual income. This applies if your partner is included in the Subclass 494 visa application. Only one partner needs to be included.
  • The partner included in the Subclass 494 visa application must be the main applicant for the Subclass 191 visa. Nonetheless, both partners must fulfill the annual income criteria.