The 494 Visa allows skilled workers to be sponsored by an Australian employer in a regional area for up to five years

494 Visa holders can:
• live and work in Australia for up to five years
• include immediate family on 494 visa
• transition to permanent residency (if eligible) via the 191 Regional Skilled Visa

Applying for a 494 Visa
The Subclass 494 visa will open to applications in November 2019. To be eligible to apply for this visa, applicants must

• be under 45 years
• have at least 3 years work experience
• have a valid skill assessment
• demonstrate competent English
• meet the health and character requirements

More about the 494 Visa
Regional areas include everywhere except the metropolitan areas of; Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Gold Coast and Perth.
Increased number of eligible occupations
Provisional visa with option to transition to permanent residency after three years
Priority processing

If you would like to apply for another employer sponsored visa, you may be eligible to apply for one of the below employer sponsored visas instead:

482 TSS Visa
186 Visa (ENS)

You may be eligible to apply for a 494 visa

You must be nominated by an Australian employer, who is a Stanard Business Sponsor operating lawfully in Australia.

You must be employed in a regional area and working under an eligible occupation.

The nomination application must be lodged before your visa application.

You must be under 45 at the time of application unless you are exempt.

You must have at least 3 years of full-time work experience, within the last 5 years, before applying for this visa.

Skill Assessment
You must have a positive Skill Assessment, in your nominated occupation, from the relevant assessing authority unless you are exempt.

Some applicants may be exempt if;

• you hold a 457 Visa or 482 Visa and you were required to provide a suitable skills assessment for this application.
• are nominated as an academic (University Lecturer or Faculty Head at academic Level A, B, C, D or E) by an Australian university
• you have held a New Zealand Subclass 444 or New Zealand Citizen Family Relationship visa (subclass 461) and have been working for your nominating employer for two years*

You must have at least Competent English to apply for this visa

Health & Character
You must meet the health and character requirements (Unless you are exempt)

How long will it take to get a decision on your 494 visa?

Due to the low volume of applications the Department does currently not provide estimates on processing times.

Include your family

Applicants can include the following people in their 494 application:

-> Dependent children/step-children
-> Partner’s dependent child or children
-> Partner

Your married or de facto partner can be the same or opposite sex. Applicants must prove:
• the relationship is genuine and continuing
• you live together, or do not live separately on a permanent basis.
• your partner is at least 18 years of age when the application is lodged (there are some exceptions)
• you are not related by family (if you are in a de facto relationship)
• you and your partner have a mutual commitment to a shared life to the exclusion of all others

To be eligible to be included or added to a 186 visa, a child must:
• be your child or a stepchild from a current or a previous relationship (in certain circumstances);
• not be married, engaged to be married, or have a de facto partner; and must be:
• under 18 years of age
• over 18 years of age but not yet turned 23, and be dependent on you or your partner
• over 23 years of age and be unable to earn a living to support themselves due to physical or cognitive limitations and be dependent on you or your partner (Note: The child will still need to meet Australia’s health requirement)
• a dependent child of a child who is eligible under 1, 2 or 3 above.

Applicants over 18 must demonstrate functional English. You can demonstrate Functional English without IELTS if you:

  • Completed all years of primary education and at least three years of secondary education in an educational institution in or outside Australia and all instructions were in English.


  • Completed at least five years of secondary education in an institution in or outside Australia and all instructions were in English.

All family members must meet health and character requirements. All applicants over 16 must provide police clearances.