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Please be advised that RDA Northern Inland is not receiving any new 491 Visa applications as it has reached its assigned allocation.


Please refer to the NSW Government website to identify alternate NSW regional options.

Eligibility for NSW 491 Nomination Criteria

To be eligible for nomination from the NSW Government you must meet a variety of criteria as follows.

Occupation Eligibility

To be eligible for a 491 Visa, your occupation must be on the Department of Home Affairs skilled occupation list.

To be eligible for a nomination under Pathway 1, Stream B, your occupation must also be on the skill list for NSW Nomination, which is available on the NSW Government's website. This list is determined and managed by the NSW Government, and applies to all NSW regions.

We have further information about the occupation list, including how to read it and the requirements on our Occupation List Information page.

Note: You are not eligible for NSW nomination for this visa if you have previously been nominated by NSW for any visa.

Application Pathways

For the 2022-23 financial year (July 2022 to June 2023), there are two nomination pathways for a NSW nomination for the 491 Visa:

  • Pathway 1 – Apply directly to a Regional Development Australia (RDA) office

  • Pathway 2 – Be invited to apply by Investment NSW

There are two nomination streams under Pathway 1, these are:

  • Stream A – Established work history with a regional NSW-based employer

  • Stream B – My skills are required in regional NSW

Each of these pathways have their own criteria as detailed below.

Pathway 1 – Apply directly to a Regional Development Australia (RDA) Office

Under Pathway 1, applicants that meet set criteria for Stream A or Stream B can apply directly to the RDA for the region that they wish to live and work in. Applications can be submitted when applications are open using the process described in steps 3 to 10 on our How to Apply for a 491 Visa Nomination page.

We have information about the Northern Inland for Skilled Migrants and resources to help you settle in our region if you are not already here.

Stream A - Established Work History with a Regional NSW-based Employer

To apply under this stream, you must be currently living and working in a designated regional area of NSW, and have continuously done so for the past 12 months. 

Your qualifying skilled employment in the twelve months immediately before applying must be: 

  • In your nominated (or closely related) occupation; and

  • With the same regional NSW-based employer; and

  • Deemed skilled by NSW; and

  • Paid a minimum of the TSMIT salary level of $53,900 (prorated if under 38 hours per week) from your qualifying employer in your nominated (or closely related) occupation.

To apply under this pathway, you must also:

  • Meet the basic eligibility criteria listed above
  • Provide evidence for all points claims in your SkillSelect EOI, and where you currently reside, with your application. You must also provide a copy of your SkillSelect EOI.

NSW defines ‘skilled employment’ as employment that is: 

  • after the date you are deemed skilled in your nominated occupation, AND

  • in your nominated (or closely related) occupation, AND 

  • for remuneration of at least 20 hours per week

Stream B - My Skills are Required in Regional NSW

To apply through Pathway 1 - Stream B, you must meet the basic criteria listed above and all of the following:

  • You must be currently residing in NSW or offshore, and have continuously done so for a minimum period of three months.

  • Your occupation must be in a unit group on the Stream B Skills List. Further information to help you understand this list is available on our Occupation List page.

  • The details in your Expression of Interest (EOI) must be up to date, and you must be able to provide evidence for all points claimed in your EOI.

Pathway 2 - Be Invited to Apply by Investment NSW

Under Pathway 2, applicants will be invited by the NSW Government during invitation rounds based on Expression of Interest (EOI) submitted to the Department of Home Affairs through Skill Select.

Residency - You must be either currently residing in NSW or offshore, and have continuously done so for a minimum period of three months.

It is important you ensure that:

  • all information in your EOI is accurate; AND
  • your EOI seeks nomination for the Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) Visa (Subclass 491) and NSW only.

Invitation rounds from the NSW Government are ongoing throughout the financial year. There are no set dates and rounds are not announced beforehand. Meeting the minimum nomination criteria does not guarantee you an invitation to apply from the NSW Government.

If you receive an invitation from the NSW Government to apply through Pathway 1, you must apply to the NSW Government (not to an RDA) within 14 days of being invited.

Further details on how to apply through Pathway 2 are available on the Skilled Work Regional Visa (Subclass 491) page of the NSW Government's website.

Previously published points scores and work experience guides for the Skilled Work Regional visa (subclass 491) have been removed for Pathway 2 due to increased availability of the Skilled Independent visa (subclass 189) by the Department of Home Affairs.

Because being invited to apply is highly competitive, the NSW Government strongly encourages anyone seeking NSW nomination to explore all other migration pathways and do not wait to be invited by NSW.

Apply for 491 Nomination Apply for 491 Nomination Find out about applying for nomination from the NSW Government for a 491 Visa Read More
Discover the Northern Inland Discover the Northern Inland Discover the Northern Inland and find out about living here Read More

Alternative Migration Options

NSW nomination for the Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491) is just one of a number of visa options for prospective skilled migrants. There is a range of visas offered by Home Affairs, including both temporary and permanent employer nominated visas.

You may also wish to seek advice from a registered migration agent. A searchable list of registered migration agents is available on the Department of Home Affairs website. There are also two registered migration agents in the Northern Inland:

Mark Lyden (Tamworth)
Christopher Serow (Legal Minds, Armidale)
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