News and updates


Update: 3 September 2020

Victoria’s 2020-21 skilled visa nomination program (subclass 190 and 491)

Victoria will be opening Victoria’s 2020-21 Victorian skilled visa nomination program from 8 September 2020 until 5 October 2020. This will be an interim round, until the Federal budget is delivered on 6 October 2020. Read more.

Skilled Migration Service

Update: 2 September 2020

New Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List Announced

Acting Minister for Immigration Alan Tudge in a joint statement with Senator Michaelia Cash has announced a new Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List (PMSOL). Read more.


Update: 21 August 2020

SA released process advice for interim visa nomination applications

The Commonwealth Department of Home Affairs has provided a limited number of skilled and business visa nomination places to the Government of South Australia up until the Federal Budget is delivered on 6 October 2020. Read more.


Update: 17 August 2020

2020-21 Victorian visa nomination program update

The Commonwealth Department of Home Affairs has provided a limited number of visa nomination places to the Victorian Government up until the Federal Budget is delivered on 6 October 2020. Read more.

Occupation ceilings

Update: 17 August 2020

Occupation ceilings for 2020-21 immigration program were announced

The Department of Home Affairs has announced the occupation ceilings for independent and skilled regional (provisional) visas for 2020-21 program. Read more.


Update: 12 August 2020

Update on the South Australia’s General and Skilled and Business Migration program

The Government of South Australia has been advised of a limited number of interim allocation places for the State’s General Skilled and Business Migration Program for 2020/21, which will be prioritised to support South Australia’s economic and public health recovery. Read more.

International Students

Update: 20 July 2020

Australian government announces a number of changes to support international students

Australian government has announced a number of changes to international student visa arrangements to support international students through the Coronavirus crisis. Read more.

Visa application

Update: 9 July 2020

Hong Kong citizens in Australia offered a visa pathway to remain in Australia for five years

Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced that Hong Kong citizens residing in Australia on student and temporary visas will be eligible to remain in Australia for up to five years with a pathway to apply for permanent residency. Read more.

State Nomination update

State Nomination update

State nomination program will remain temporarily closed while we await the Commonwealth Government’s allocation of state nomination places for 2020-21. Read more.


NSW opens application for 491 Skilled Work Regional visa for a limited time

New South Wales Treasury is accepting applications for Subclass 491 Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa for a limited time. Applications opened on Monday 15 June and will close on 26 June 2020. Read more.


Changes to Northern Territory GSM options

The Northern Territory (NT) government announced changes to the nomination criteria under the General Skilled Migration Program that will come in to effect from 1 July 2020. The changes will include extra residency and employability requirements for NT International students and other NT residents who wish to apply for a subclass 190 nomination.  Read more.


Exceptions of work hours for international students has been updated

The temporary relaxation of the 40-hour work limited for international students working in supermarkets has ended. Read more.

Victoria closes skilled nominated visa (subclasses 190 and 491) program for 2019-20

The Victoria government announced that skilled visa nomination is now closed for the 2019-20 program as the state have filled the places provided by the Commonwealth Department of Home Affairs. This includes both Skilled Nominated (Permanent) visa (subclass 190) and Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491). Read more.


Migration update - Victorian government announces an emergency relief fund for international students

The Victorian government will establish a $45 million fund to support international students facing financial hardship in Victoria due to the coronavirus crisis. Read more.


Migration update - Australian Government Endorsed Event (AGEE) stream of Temporary Activity (subclass 408) visa

This visa stream is being used by the Department of Home Affairs to manage the exceptional circumstances that have arisen due to the COVID-19 pandemic event. This is a temporary measure and will be reviewed by the Department on an ongoing basis. Read more.


Migration update - Emergency relief and case work support for Temporary Visa holders

The Red Cross has announced that it will be receiving funding from the Australian Government for the next six months to deliver emergency relief and casework support to temporary visa holders who have no way to support themselves and who have urgent needs. Read more.


Migration update - Changes to Temporary Visas

On 4 April 2020, the Acting Minister for Immigration, Mr Allan Tudge, announced number of changes that will impact temporary visa holders. Read more.

Migration update - Current restrictions

There have been quite a lot of changes announced recently due to the rapidly evolving situation with Covid-19. We have summarised some these changes below and we will provide updates as and when changes are implemented. Read more.

Find out about the latest Skills Select Round for January 2020

In the January 2020 round, 1,000 invitations were issued for subclass 189 – Skilled Independent visa and 300 invitations for subclass 491 – Family Sponsored stream. Read more.

Skilled Migration Occupation List to be reviewed

 The Department is in the process of reviewing the skilled migration occupation list.  As a part of the review, the department has issued the Traffic Light Bulletin which contains all occupations that are flagged for a change to their current status or are recommended for a salary caveat. Read more. 

Novel Coronavirus and Australian visas

 The Australian government has announced that all travellers who left or transited from mainland China from 1 February 2020 will be denied entry to Australia, with exceptions. Read more.

Early support can help raise wages by up to $70K per annum for skilled migrants 

A new report from Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre says that only 60% of migrants from a non-English-speaking background are working in well-matched jobs. Read more.

Visa Application Assist

Upcoming Changes to Skills Select and Points Test 

The Department of Home Affairs has provided further information about the changes to the points test and the new regional postcodes. Read more.

Subclass 491 visa State and Territory Nomination update

Subclass 491 visa State and Territory Nomination update

The subclass 491 visa came in to effect on 16 November 2019. The Department of Home Affairs have now released the list of occupations and the regional postcodes. Read more

 October 2019 Skills Select Update 

October 2019 Skills Select Update                                       

Skilled The minimum point score for the 11 October 2019 Skills Select round was 80 points. The 992 invitations issued on 85 points, 318 invitations on 80 points, 149 invitations on 90 points. Read more

 Reginal postcodes

Find out the new Designated Regional area postcodes                                      

Skilled Migration Service is hosting a series of events to bring corporate partners and international students and migrants together. Read more                     


Victoria releases the nomination criteria for Skilled Work Regional (Subclass 491)Visa

Victoria will start accepting applications for Victorian nomination under the subclass 491 visa program from 9 am Monday 18 November 2019. Read More

Change to Driving Licence Rules for Temporary Visa Holders 

Change to Driving Licence Rules for Temporary Visa Holders

The new Victoria road laws to Driving Licence Rules for temporary visa holders including international students commenced on Tuesday 29th October 2019. Read more

Event update 

Event update

Skilled Migration Service is hosting a series of events to bring corporate partners and international students and migrants together. Read more

New reginal area 

Regional News Update

The federal government announced last week that Gold Coast and Perth will no longer classify as ‘major cities’ and will fall under the category of ‘major regional centres’ for skilled migration purposes. Read more

 Report cover 

The research report - experience of Skilled Professional Migrants

In researching the experiences of recent skilled migrants, we conducted a survey and two focus groups. We enlisted our strong alumni network to participate in a survey (153 invited to participate) and focus groups (approx. 20 participants). Read full report

 Skilled migrants

Skilled migrants struggling to find their feet, study finds

Highly educated, highly skilled migrants often can't find good jobs because employers don't trust their experience, according to a new study. The research suggests the skills of many migrants are wasted as has recommended that workplaces be required by law to give equal opportunity to migrants.  Read more


Regional opportunities for Skilled Professionals

The new 'Skilled regional visas', which will take effect in November, will open up many opportunities to international skilled professionals who cannot otherwise access the independent skilled visa to live and work in Australia. These provisional visas will potentially provide a pathway to permanent residency if all conditions on the visa are met: mainly, the visa holder (and dependants) must live and work in regional Australia. Read more


English language requirements for skilled visas

English language requirements for skilled visas

If you are applying for a skilled migration visa, you need to meet the required English language criteria. Depending on the visa subclass you are applying for, you can demonstrate this in several ways. Read more


How much it cost to send your kids to school if you are holding visa 482

School fees for dependent subclass 482 visa holders

The subclass 482 Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa enables employers to address labour shortages by bringing in skilled workers where employers can't source an appropriately skilled Australian worker. Applicants for a TSS visa may include dependent family members in their application. Family member have the below rights. Read more


Visa CTA

Changes to the Skilled Migration Program being introduced on 16 November 2019

The federal government has announced changes to the skilled migration stream that will be introduced for the 2019/2020 financial year. Read more

Skilled Migration Service Pre-arrival

New points test coming in to effect on 16 November 2019

The Migration Amendment (new Skilled Regional Visas) Regulation 2019 will also introduce a revised points system for subclass 491 (Skilled Work Regional) and the General Skilled Migration visas (subclass 189/190) from 16 November 2019. Read more