Employer Nomination Scheme (Subclass 186) (‘ENS Visa’)


This visa is a permanent residence visa for highly skilled workers. This visa allows you and any dependent family members included in your visa application to live as permanent residents in Australia.


You might be able to get this visa if you:

  • have been nominated by an Australian employer and this nomination has been approved within the six months before you apply;
  • are under the age of 45 at the time of application;
  • at the time of application, have the required skills and qualifications for the position you have been nominated for – including holding (or being eligible for) any mandatory registration, licence or professional membership through skills assessment;
  • at the time of lodgement, have appropriate English language skills;
  • meet health and character requirements; and
  • meet the requirements of the stream in which you apply. (see below)

Nominating Employer

You can nominate a skilled worker for this visa if:

  • you actively and lawfully operate a business in Australia
  • you have a genuine need for a paid employee to fill a skilled position
  • you offer a skilled position in the applicant’s field that is full time and ongoing for at least two years
  • you have met training benchmark requirement
  • you pay a market salary rate
  • you comply with Australian law including in relation to immigration and employment
  • there is no adverse information known about your business or any person associated with your business, or it is reasonable to disregard this information


Three streams are available through which you can apply.

the Temporary Residence Transition stream

This stream may be available if your employer wishes to sponsor you for permanent residence and you hold either of the following:

  • Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa (subclass 482) – in the medium-term stream unless transitional arrangements apply
  • Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 457) – not granted under labour agreement arrangements or
  • related associated Bridging visa and have worked for your employer full-time in Australia on your TSS and/or subclass 457 visa(s) for at least:
    • three out of the previous four years (before the nomination is made) in the same position that they have nominated you for or
    • two out of the previous three years before the nomination is made, if transitional arrangements apply because you either held, or were an applicant for, a subclass 457 visa (which was subsequently granted) on 18 April 2017.

the Direct Entry stream

If you do not meet the requirements under the TRT stream (for example, because you have never, or only briefly worked in Australia), never held or do not currently hold a 457 or TSS visa, this stream may then be available if your employer still wishes to sponsor you for permanent residence, and that you meet certain criteria to apply under this stream.

the Labour Agreement stream.

This stream is available if you have an employer who is willing to sponsor you has obtained a labour agreement with the Department of Home Affairs. It allows Australian employers to source skilled overseas workers in accordance with labour agreements entered into with the Department, where there is a demonstrated need that cannot be met in the Australian labour market and standard visa programs are unavailable.


Once you have identified the stream of which you wish to apply, this visa will involve a two-step process:

  1. a nomination application for a skilled position by an approved Australian employer
  2. a visa application by the proposed employee

The two steps above must be completed in order. You do not, however, have to wait for each application to be approved to move onto the next step.


Obtaining a nomination for an eligible Australian employer followed by a ENS visa application for the visa applicant can be often complex and uncertain at times. Refusal of such a case may also mean adverse impact and delay on the proposed business operation for the employer and uncertain visa status and financial hardship for their overseas skilled employees.

Infinite Immigration provides full-service migration assistance. We have helped many Australian businesses as well as their skilled employees with complex cases.

We can help you identify the best stream and occupation of which we believe you would be best suited and will take care of the whole nomination and visa applications, from eligibility assessment stage straight through to application lodgement and finalisation.

We will ensure that all stakeholders are fully informed and confident in the application, and liaise with DHA as your representative until we have obtained the desired migration outcome on your behalf.

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