Differences Between 190 And 191 Visa

Differences Between 190 And 191 Visa

Australia’s diverse and dynamic economy is often a beacon for skilled workers from across the globe. Among the numerous pathways to living and working in this vibrant country are the Skilled Nominated visa (subclass 190) and the Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) visa (subclass 191).

These visas cater to skilled individuals, offering them the opportunity to contribute to Australia’s workforce while enjoying the lifestyle benefits the country has to offer.

However, each visa has distinct features, eligibility criteria, and benefits that applicants should consider carefully.

This article delves into the differences and nuances of each visa, guiding potential applicants in making an informed decision.

Now, let’s get straight to the answers you are looking for.

Key Differences Between 190 And 191 Visa

Understanding the nuances and distinctions between the Skilled Nominated Visa (subclass 190) and the Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) Visa (subclass 191) is crucial for potential applicants. Each visa has unique features tailored to different objectives within Australia’s immigration framework. Here, we break down the key differences to help you navigate your options more effectively.

Pathway to Permanent Residency

  • Subclass 190: This visa is a direct pathway to permanent residency. Applicants are granted permanent resident status upon approval of the visa, allowing them to live and work anywhere in Australia immediately.
  • Subclass 191: This visa also leads to permanent residency but is a two-step process. Applicants must first hold a provisional regional visa (subclass 491 or 494) and comply with its conditions for at least three years before they can transition to the subclass 191 visa.

Regional Restrictions

  • Subclass 190: While there are expectations to live and work in the nominating state or territory, typically for two years, there are no legal restrictions enforcing this after the visa is granted. Applicants have the freedom to move between states and territories.
  • Subclass 191: Initially, holders of the provisional visas (subclass 491 or 494) are required to live, work, or study only in designated regional areas. However, once granted the subclass 191 visa, there are no regional restrictions, and individuals can live and work anywhere in Australia.

Points Test

  • Subclass 190: Applicants are required to score a minimum of 65 points in the points-based system, which evaluates factors such as age, English language proficiency, skilled employment experience, and education.
  • Subclass 191: This visa is not points-tested. Eligibility is primarily based on having met the requirements of the provisional visa, including living and working in a regional area for at least three years and meeting the minimum taxable income threshold.

Family Inclusion

  • Both Subclass 190 and Subclass 191: Both visas allow applicants to include family members in their applications. Eligible family members include partners and dependent children, who must also meet health and character requirements.

Application Process

  • Subclass 190: Applicants must submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) and be nominated by a state or territory government before being invited to apply. The process is competitive, and nomination criteria vary by state and territory.
  • Subclass 191: Applicants must hold a qualifying provisional visa for at least three years and comply with its conditions, including living and working in a regional area and meeting the income threshold, before applying.

Commitment to State or Territory

  • Subclass 190: Although not legally binding, there is an expectation that visa holders will live and work in the nominating state or territory for a certain period to contribute to its economy.
  • Subclass 191: There is no specific commitment to any state or territory once the subclass 191 visa is granted. The initial commitment is tied to the provisional visa, requiring applicants to live in a regional area.

I hope the information above got you all the answers you were looking for. But if you still have questions, below we will delve further into the subject.

Eligibility Criteria for the 190 and 191 Visas

Understanding the eligibility criteria for each visa is crucial for a successful application. Both visas have distinct requirements aligned with the objectives they serve.

Skilled Nominated Visa (Subclass 190)

This visa is for skilled workers who wish to live and work in a specific Australian state or territory that nominates them. Here are the key eligibility criteria:

  • Nomination by a State or Territory: You must be nominated by an Australian state or territory government. The nomination process is competitive, and each state/territory has its own list of in-demand occupations and may have additional requirements.
  • Skills Assessment: A valid skills assessment in an occupation on the eligible skilled occupation list is mandatory.
  • Residency Requirement: Applicants may need to meet specific residency requirements, such as living in the nominating state or territory for a certain period.
  • Points-tested: You must score at least 65 points on the points assessment. Points are awarded based on age, English language ability, skilled employment experience, and other factors.
  • Age: Applicants must be under 45 years of age when they receive an invitation to apply.
  • English Language Proficiency: Competent English is required, with the possibility of additional points for higher proficiency levels.
  • Health and Character: Applicants and any included family members must meet health and character requirements​.

Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) Visa (Subclass 191)

This visa caters to those who have already lived and worked in regional Australia on a provisional visa. It’s a pathway to permanent residency with its own set of eligibility criteria:

  • Provisional Visa Requirement: You must have held a Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) Visa (subclass 491) or a Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) Visa (subclass 494) for at least three years.
  • Residence and Work in Regional Area: You must have lived and worked in a designated regional area of Australia while holding the provisional visa.
  • Income Threshold: You need to have met the minimum taxable income requirement set by the Australian Government for at least three years while holding your provisional visa.
  • Compliance with Visa Conditions: Adherence to the conditions of the provisional visa is crucial, including living and working in a designated regional area.
  • Health and Character: Similar to the subclass 190 visa, applicants and their family members must meet health and character requirements.
  • Not Points-tested: Unlike the subclass 190, the subclass 191 visa is not points-tested. However, meeting the other stringent requirements is essential for a successful application​.

Application Process

The application process for each visa involves several steps, from expressing interest to receiving the invitation to apply, and finally, submitting the application. It’s imperative to understand and meticulously follow each step to ensure a smooth application process.

Visa 190:

  1. Expression of Interest (EOI): The first step is to submit an EOI through SkillSelect. This online system enables the Australian government to assess your skills and qualifications. You don’t need to provide supporting documentation at this stage, but you will need accurate information about your skills, qualifications, and work experience.
  2. State or Territory Nomination: After submitting your EOI, you must be nominated by an Australian state or territory. Each state/territory has its own criteria and occupation lists. Some might require you to live in the state/territory or have a job offer.
  3. Invitation to Apply: If your EOI is accepted, and you are nominated by a state or territory, you will receive an invitation to apply for the visa.
  4. Visa Application: Once invited, you have 60 days to submit a complete visa application, providing all necessary documents and information. This includes your skills assessment, English language test results, and evidence of state or territory nomination, among others.
  5. Await Decision: After submission, your application will be processed, and you will be informed of the outcome. Processing times can vary based on several factors, such as the volume of applications and the complexity of your case​.

Visa 191:

  1. Check Eligibility: Ensure you meet all the eligibility criteria, including the minimum three years of living and working in a regional area on a qualifying provisional visa and meeting the minimum income requirement.
  2. Organize Documents: Prepare all necessary documents, including evidence of your income, residency in a regional area, and compliance with your provisional visa conditions.
  3. Apply Via ImmiAccount: Submit your application through the ImmiAccount platform. This comprehensive system allows you to provide all required information, attach documents, and even track the status of your application.
  4. Pay Visa Fee: You will need to pay the visa application fee when you submit your application. The fee structure may vary depending on your circumstances, such as the inclusion of family members.
  5. Await Outcome: After submitting your application, wait for the Department of Home Affairs to process it. You may be contacted if additional information is needed. Like the subclass 190 visa, processing times can vary. It’s crucial to respond promptly to any requests for additional information to avoid delays in processing.

Benefits and Limitations

Both the Skilled Nominated Visa (subclass 190) and the Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) Visa (subclass 191) offer numerous benefits to successful applicants, but they also come with certain limitations and conditions. Understanding these can help potential applicants make informed decisions based on their individual needs and long-term goals.

Visa 190:

Benefits:

  1. Permanent Residency: This visa grants permanent resident status, allowing you to live and work in Australia indefinitely.
  2. Work and Study: You have the freedom to work and study anywhere in Australia.
  3. Sponsorship of Relatives: You can sponsor eligible relatives for permanent residency.
  4. Medicare Access: As a permanent resident, you have access to Medicare, Australia’s public healthcare system.
  5. Travel Rights: You can travel to and from Australia for five years from the date the visa is granted. After this period, you can apply for a Resident Return Visa to re-enter Australia.
  6. Pathway to Citizenship: If eligible, you can apply for Australian citizenship after meeting residency and other criteria.

Limitations:

  1. Nomination Obligation: You are expected to live and work in the state or territory that nominated you, usually for a minimum of two years.
  2. Competitive Process: State and territory nominations can be highly competitive, and each has its own list of in-demand occupations and additional requirements.
  3. Points-based Selection: You must meet a minimum score in the points test, and higher scores generally have a better chance of receiving an invitation to apply.

Visa 191:

Benefits:

  1. Permanent Residency: Once granted, the visa offers permanent residency, allowing you to live and work anywhere in Australia.
  2. Freedom of Movement: Unlike the provisional visas (491 or 494), there are no regional restrictions. You can choose to live and work in any part of Australia.
  3. Family Inclusion: You can include your family members in your application, and they too can enjoy the benefits of permanent residency.
  4. Medicare Access: As a permanent resident, you and your family have access to Medicare.
  5. Travel Component: The visa comes with a travel component, allowing you to travel in and out of Australia for five years. After this period, you can renew your travel facility or apply for citizenship if eligible.
  6. Pathway to Citizenship: You can apply for Australian citizenship after meeting the residency and other criteria.

Limitations:

  1. Previous Visa Requirements: You must have held a provisional regional visa (subclass 491 or 494) and complied with its conditions for at least three years.
  2. Income Threshold: You must meet the minimum taxable income requirement for at least three years while holding your provisional visa.
  3. Regional Living: Initially, you must have lived, worked, or studied only in designated regional areas while holding the provisional visa.

Both the subclass 190 and subclass 191 visas are designed to address specific needs within the Australian immigration system. The subclass 190 aims to meet the skilled workforce requirements of individual states and territories, while the subclass 191 provides a pathway to permanent residency for those who have contributed to regional areas. Prospective applicants should carefully consider these benefits and limitations in light of their personal circumstances and long-term plans when deciding which visa to pursue.

Cost and Processing Time

The financial investment and time involved in obtaining a visa are significant factors in the application process. Understanding the costs and expected processing times can help applicants plan and prepare effectively.

Visa 190:

Cost:

  • The application fee for the main applicant starts from AUD 4,240. Additional costs apply for each family member included in the application. The exact cost can vary depending on the specific circumstances of the applicant, such as the number of dependents and their age.
  • Additional costs may include charges for health assessments, police certificates, and language tests, among others.
  • It’s advisable to consider the potential costs of using a registered migration agent or lawyer, although this is optional.

Processing Time:

  • Processing times for the Subclass 190 visa can vary significantly based on the volume of applications, the complexity of individual cases, and the thoroughness of the provided documentation.
  • As per the latest information, 75% of applications are processed within 6 months, and 90% are processed within 11 months. However, these timeframes are subject to change, and it’s recommended to check the official Department of Home Affairs website for the most current information​.

Visa 191:

Cost:

  • The exact fees for the Subclass 191 visa are not specified as they are subject to change. However, applicants can expect a base charge for the main applicant and additional charges for each family member included in the application.
  • Similar to the Subclass 190 visa, applicants should also account for additional costs associated with health assessments, police certificates, language tests, and professional services if they choose to use them.

Processing Time:

  • The processing time for the Subclass 191 visa can vary widely, as each application is processed on a case-by-case basis. Factors influencing the processing time include the completeness of the application, the time it takes to perform necessary checks, and the responsiveness of external agencies to requests for additional information.
  • Applicants are advised to ensure that their application is complete and that they respond promptly to any requests for additional information to avoid unnecessary delays.

Key Takeaways:

  • Both visas have associated costs that go beyond the application fee, including charges for health checks, police certificates, and language tests.
  • The processing times can vary, and it’s crucial for applicants to keep themselves updated with the latest information from the official sources.
  • Preparing a thorough and complete application can help in avoiding delays in the processing time.

Conclusion:

The subclass 190 visa is ideal for skilled workers who are nominated by an Australian state or territory and wish to settle in that particular region, contributing to its economic growth. On the other hand, the subclass 191 visa caters to those who have already demonstrated their commitment to regional Australia by living and working in a designated regional area on a provisional visa and are seeking permanent residency.

FAQs:

1. Can I switch from a Subclass 190 visa to a Subclass 191 visa if my circumstances change?

No, these visas are not interchangeable. The Subclass 190 visa is a permanent visa for skilled workers nominated by a state or territory, while the Subclass 191 visa is for individuals who have lived and worked in a designated regional area on a provisional visa. The pathways and eligibility criteria for each visa are distinct.

2. How long do I need to live in the nominating state or territory under the Subclass 190 visa?

While there is no legal obligation, it’s generally expected that you live and work in the nominating state or territory for at least two years. This commitment is part of the agreement when accepting the state or territory’s nomination.

3. Can I include my family in my visa application for both Subclass 190 and Subclass 191 visas?

Yes, you can include family members in your application for both visas. This typically includes your partner and dependent children. However, each family member must meet health and character requirements.

4. Are both visas points-tested?

The Subclass 190 visa is points-tested, and applicants must score at least 65 points to be eligible. Points are awarded based on factors such as age, English language proficiency, skilled employment experience, and qualifications. The Subclass 191 visa, however, is not points-tested. Instead, it requires you to have lived and worked in a regional area on a provisional visa and to meet the income threshold, among other criteria.

5. Can I travel outside Australia on these visas?

Yes, both visas come with a travel component that allows you to travel to and from Australia for five years from the date the visa is granted. If you wish to continue traveling to and from Australia as a permanent resident after these five years, you’ll need to obtain a Resident Return Visa (RRV) or apply for Australian citizenship if you are eligible.

6. What happens if I don’t meet the minimum taxable income requirement for the Subclass 191 visa?

Failing to meet the minimum taxable income requirement for at least three years while holding a provisional visa (Subclass 491 or 494) can make you ineligible for the Subclass 191 visa. This requirement is a crucial part of demonstrating your contribution to Australia’s regional economy.

7. Can I apply for Australian citizenship after obtaining these visas?

Yes, both visas offer a pathway to Australian citizenship. After meeting the residency and other criteria set by the Department of Home Affairs, you can apply for citizenship.