The Skilled Independent Visa (subclass 189) is a permanent residence visa for points-tested skilled workers who want to work and live in Australia.
To be able to apply for this visa you need to submit an expression of interest and then be invited through SkillSelect to apply.
You can be in or outside Australia when you apply and when the visa is granted.
What this visa lets you do
This is a permanent residence visa. It lets you and any family members who have also been granted this visa to:
- stay in Australia indefinitely
- work and study in Australia
- enrol in Medicare, Australia’s scheme for health-related care and expenses
- apply for Australian citizenship (if you are eligible)
- sponsor eligible relatives for permanent residence
- travel to and from Australia for five years from the date the visa is granted (after that time, you will need a resident return visa or another visa to return to Australia).
Before you apply
To be able to apply for this visa, you must first submit an expression of interest and then be invited through SkillSelect. If you receive an invitation, you will have 60 days to apply online for the visa. During that time, you cannot change the information in your expression of interest.
To submit a complete expression of interest, you must have competent English language skills and a positive skills assessment for your nominated occupation (or Job Ready program, if applicable).
Your visa application is likely to require extensive supporting documents, as listed in the document checklist. Start compiling your documents early in the process, even before you submit your expression of interest.
You need a valid passport or other travel document for this visa. If you plan to get a new passport, you should do so before applying for your visa. If you get a new passport after you have lodged your application, give the details of your new passport to our office.
Who could get this visa
You might be eligible to apply for this visa, if you are invited. When we sent your letter of invitation, you must have:
- nominated an occupation that is on the relevant skilled occupation list
- obtained a suitable skills assessment for that occupation
- not yet turned 50 years of age
- achieved the score specified in your letter of invitation based on the factors in the points test
- at least competent English.
You must meet certain health requirements. The health examinations you need will depend on your personal circumstances, including your country of citizenship, time spent in another country during the last five years and your intended activities in Australia. The results of your health examinations are generally valid for 12 months.
This applies to you and any dependent family members included in your application.
You are able to organise your health examinations upfront before lodging a visa application.
You must meet certain character requirements. You must provide a police certificate from each country you have lived in for 12 months or more during the past 10 years after you turned 16 years of age.
This applies to you and all the dependent family members listed in your application, whether they are migrating or not.
Debts to the Australian Government
You must have no outstanding debts to the Australian Government or have arranged to repay any outstanding debts to the Australian Government before this visa can be granted.
You might be asked to provide biometrics (a scientific form of identification) as part of the application. Countries and visa subclasses included in the biometrics program has more information.
Sign the Australian Values Statement
If you are 18 years of age or older, you must sign an Australian Values Statement to confirm that you will respect the Australian way of life and obey Australian laws. The statement is included in the visa application form. You must have read, or had explained to you, the Life in Australia book before you sign the statement.
Use our free service to find out whether you could qualify for this visa. Fill out the assessment form. Make sure that all information provided is authentic in order to make a proper assessment.