Skilled Independent and State sponsorship

General Skilled Migration (GSM) requires all applicants to meet certain basic or ‘threshold criteria:

 • skills assessment in a nominated occupation on the appropriate Skilled Occupations List

 • age: in general, main applicants must be aged between 18 and 44

 • English language ability: most applicants will need to sit for formal English language testing

 • applicants will need to lodge an Expression of Interest using SkillSelect and be invited to apply for a visa, before they can lodge their GSM application

 • in certain cases completion of one or more suitable qualifications after at least two years of study in Australia

 • applicants may be sponsored by an Australian state. Each state has its own occupation list and criteria

Most GSM subclasses also require the applicant to meet the applicable pass mark in the GSM points test, and for this reason GSM visas are often referred to as ‘points tested’ visas.

SkillSelect is a major change to how Australia manages its skilled migration program. The department announced “SkillSelect helps to ensure the skilled migration program is based on the economic needs of Australia.  It will support the Australian Government in managing who can apply for skilled migration, when they can apply and in what numbers. As a result, the Department of Immigration and Citizenship expects to significantly reduce the time taken to process a visa application.”

The SkillSelect system involves prospective GSM applicants first lodging an ‘Expression of Interest’ (EOI).

The EOIs will be reviewed periodically by the Department, and the highest calibre prospective GSM applicants will be issued with invitations to lodge GSM visa applications.

Intending migrants express their interest in applying for a skilled visa through an online EOI form. They are required to indicate categories of skilled migration they are interested in, and answer questions relevant to the visa subclasses of interest.

Based on an EOI, a person may be invited to apply for a GSM visa. The highest ranking applicants across a broad range of occupations may be invited to apply for a skilled visa. If a prospective GSM applicant is interested in making themselves available for State or Territory nomination, they can also indicate this in their EOI. The prospective applicant can indicate their preference for a particular or all States and Territories.

If a person receives an invitation to apply, they will have 60 days (from the date of invitation) to lodge their valid visa application online through SkillSelect. Applications lodged outside this timeframe will be invalid.

If a person does not make a visa application after two invitations to apply, their EOI will be removed from the database.

Contact us with your personal details and the visa you are enquiring about on +61 2 8249 1834 or email us at and we will contact you as soon as practicable.