Skilled Independent visa (subclass 189)

The Skilled Independent visa (subclass 189) is suited for people who have the qualification and experience in an occupation for which there is a specific skill shortage in Australia.

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Skilled visas and the General Skilled Migration Program (GSM)

All skilled visas made available under this program and its subclasses provide autonomous permanent residency or pathways to permanent residency - without the need of a sponsoring employer.

To be eligible for this visa category, you must be between 18 and 45 years of age, have good English language abilities as well as skills and qualifications for an occupation listed on relevant occupation lists. A Skills Assessment by the relevant authority is mandatory.


There are also different skilled visa subclasses:

  • Skilled Independent visa (subclass 189)
  • Skilled Nominated visa (subclass 190)
  • Skilled Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 489)
  • Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491)


Visa applicants must have an occupation listed in the relevant occupation list of the Australian government or a specific Australian state or territory.

The majority of visas in this category require a successfully points test. Applicants must meet a minimum points test score to be invited to apply for a visa.

Spouses/partners and other family members may be included in the application.

The sc 190 and sc 491 require a State Sponsorship or State Nomination.

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All skilled visas will provide Permanent Residency in Australia. Most skilled visa classes also need to lodge an Expression of Interest. Read more about:

Expression of Interest

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Skilled Independent visa (subclass 189)
Updated: 2023-01-22
By: Migration Agent and Immigration Lawyer Association