189190191491Australian visasGeneral Skilled Migration

The point of the points test: Australia’s skilled migration program

By November 24, 2019 No Comments

The General Points Test set out a myriad of attributes which are assessed by the Department of Home Affairs when considering visa applications for general skilled migration visas (which include Skilled Independent – Subclass 189, Skilled Regional Provisional – 489, Skilled Nominated – Subclass 190 and Permanent Residence Skilled Regional – Subclass 191 visas).

The minimum pass marks to enter the “pool” of skilled migrant applications is 65 points. However, in practicality, the minimum points required to actually be invited to apply for the visa depend on the quality of the pool of the applicants. For example, for invitations issued on 11 October 2019, the minimum points required for an invitation under the Subclass 189 visa was 80 points.

A breakdown of the various points categories are set out below:

Age

At the time of invitation to apply for the visa, you are…

Points

between 18 and 25

25

between 25 and 33

30

between 33 and 40

25

between 40 and 45

15

 

English

At the time of invitation to apply for the visa, you had…

Points

superior English

20

proficient English

10

 

Overseas employment experience (note you can only have a maximum of 20 combined employment points)

At the time of invitation to apply for the visa, you had been employed outside of Australia in the nominated occupation or a closely related occupation…

Points

for a period totalling at least 36 months in the 10 years immediately before that time

5

for a period totalling at least 60 months in the 10 years immediately before that time

10

for a period totalling at least 96 months in the 10 years immediately before that time

15

 

Australian employment experience (note you can only have a maximum of 20 combined employment points)

At the time of invitation to apply for the visa, you had been employed in Australia in the nominated occupation or a closely related occupation…

Points

for a period totalling at least 12 months in the 10 years immediately before that time

5

for a period totalling at least 36 months in the 10 years immediately before that time

10

for a period totalling at least 60 months in the 10 years immediately before that time

15

for a period totalling at least 96 months in the 10 years immediately before that time

20

 

Australian professional year

At the time of invitation to apply for the visa, you had completed…

Points

a professional year in Australia in the nominated occupation or a closely related occupation totalling at least 12 months in the 48 months immediately before that time. The current available professional year programs include:

  1. the Professional Year Program provided by the Australian Computer Society which is available to information technology graduates
  2. the Professional Year Program provided by Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, the Certified Practising Accountants Australia and the Institute of Public Accounting which is available to accounting graduates
  3. the Professional Year Program provided by Engineers Australia which is available to engineering graduates

5

 

Educational qualifications (noting that points are awarded for the highest qualification only)

At the time of invitation to apply for the visa, you had met the requirements for…

Points

a Doctorate by an Australian educational institution

20

a Bachelor Degree / Masters Degree by an Australian educational instruction

15

a Diploma by an Australian educational institution

10

a Trade Qualification by an Australian educational institution

10

a Qualification or Award recognised by the relevant assessing authority for the applicant’s nominated skilled occupation as suitable for the occupation

10

 

Specialist educational qualifications

At the time of invitation to apply for the visa, you had met the requirements for…

Points

the award of a STEM educational qualification. A specialist educational qualification is where the course is:

  1. a Masters degree by research; or
  2. a Doctoral degree; and

the degree included study for at least 2 academic years at the institution in a field of education specified in a legislative instrument (broadly speaking, within Natural or Physical Sciences, Information Technology or Engineering and Related Technologies).

10

 

Australian study qualifications

At the time of invitation to apply for the visa, you met…

Points

the Australian Study requirement. The Australian Study requirement means the person has completed 1 or more degrees, diplomas or trade qualifications for award by an Australian educational institution where the courses are:

  • registered courses; and
  • completed in a total of at least 16 calendar months; and
  • completed as a result of a total of at least 2 academic years study; and
  • conducted in English; and
  • undertaken while in Australia as the holder of a visa authorising the applicant to study.

5

 

Study in a designated regional area qualification

At the time of invitation to apply for the visa…

Points

  1. you met the Australian study requirement;
  2. the location of the campus or campuses at which that study was undertaken is in a designated regional area;
  3. you lived in a designated regional area (during the course of study); and
  4. none of the study undertaken constituted distance education.

5

 

Credentialled community languages

At the time of invitation to apply for the visa, you…

Points

had a qualification in a NAATI language (either accreditation at the paraprofessional level or above, certification at the certified provisional level or above, or a community language credential)

5

 

Partner qualifications
At the time of invitation to apply for the visa, you meet one of the below…

Points

Your spouse or de facto partner:

  1. is an applicant for the same subclass of visa; and
  2. is not an Australian permanent resident or an Australian citizen; and
  3. was under 45 at the time the invitation to apply for the visa was issued; and
  4. at the time of invitation to apply for the visa, was nominated in an occupation specified in this legislative instrument;
  5. had been assessed by the relevant assessing authority for the nominated skilled occupation (and the assessment was not for a Subclass 485 visa); and
  6. had competent English

10

​Either:

  1. you do not have a spouse or de facto partner; or
  2. you have a spouse or de facto partner who is an Australian permanent resident or an Australian citizen

10

Your spouse or de facto partner:

  1. is an applicant for the same subclass of visa; and
  2. is not an Australian permanent resident or an Australian citizen; and
  3. at the time of invitation to apply for the visa, had competent English

5

 

State or Territory nomination qualifications

At the time of invitation to apply for the visa, you meet one of the below:

Points

You have been invited to apply for a Subclass 190 visa, and the nominating State or Territory government agency has not withdrawn the nomination

5

 

Designated regional area nomination or sponsorship requirements

At the time of invitation to apply for the visa, you meet one of the below:

Points

You have been invited to apply for a Subclass 489 / 491 visa, and:

  1. the nominating State or Territory government agency has not withdrawn the nomination; or
  2. if sponsored by a family member, the Minister has accepted the sponsorship

15

 

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