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NSW 491 Visa Nomination Application Open – Monday 15 June 2020



****UPDATE 18 June 2020***: NSW has removed the minimum period of residence and the working requirements for state nomination. The application deadline has also been extended to 5pm Friday 26 June 2020.

For the first time since the Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (Subclass 491) visa was announced in November 2019, NSW is finally accepting nomination applications for this subclass. NSW Treasury will begin accepting nominations for 491 visa for a limited time. Read more to find out how to apply!

Applications opened on Monday 15 June 2020 and will close at 5pm on Tuesday, 23 June 2020. The application deadline has been extended to 5pm Friday 26 June 2020.

Applications will be assessed by the end of the financial year; Tuesday 30 June 2020.



You can only apply for NSW nomination if you meet Department of Home Affairs’ requirements for this visa and:

  1. have an occupation on the NSW Stream 1 Regional Skilled Occupation List (click here for the occupation list),  and;
  2. have been living in a designated regional area in NSW for at least the last 12 months, and;
  3. have been working in a designated regional area in NSW for at least the last 12 months, and;
  4. have been working in your nominated occupation, or a closely related occupation, for at least the last 12 months.

If you do not meet these requirements, your application will be declined and the NSW nomination fee is not refundable.

Offshore applicants are not eligible to apply due to the requirement of living and working in a designated regional area in NSW.

You can still apply for nomination if you are section 48 barred.


Designated Regional Area

One of the requirements to apply is that you need to have lived and worked in a designated regional area in NSW for at least the last 12 months. Some examples of designated regional areas are:

  • Central Coast
  • Central West
  • Far South Coast
  • Far West
  • Hunter
  • Illawarra
  • Mid North Coast
  • Murray
  • Northern Inland
  • Northern Rivers
  • Orana
  • Riverina
  • Southern Inland

A designated regional area is an area that falls within one of the following postcodes:

2250 to 2258, 2260 to 2263, 2311 to 2490, 2527, 2536 to 2551, 2575 to 2739, 2753 to 2754, 2756 to 2758 and 2773 to 2898.


Can I move to regional NSW?

Although there is no time frame for residency, you cannot move to a designated regional area in NSW to satisfy NSW nomination requirements for this visa.

Your place of residence must already be well established and demonstrated through evidence such as: rental payments, rental agreements, bank statements showing purchases and utility, phone or internet bills.


Section 48 Barred Applicants

If you are subject to a s 48 barring and are unable to apply for a visa in Australia, you can still lodge an application for state nomination from NSW. Your application will be held in the system until such time that you are able to go offshore to lodge a visa application; this will be when Australia’s travel ban is lifted.

There is no guarantee that you will be nominated for the 491 visa in the next financial year, commencing 1 July 2020. The occupation list is subject to change in the new program year. 


How to Apply

Step 1 - Submit your Expression of Interest (EOI) in SkillSelect

Before applying for NSW nomination, you must submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) in SkillSelect, the Home Affairs' online registration system, nominating NSW as your preferred state.

You will be provided with a unique number after submitting your EOI in SkillSelect. You must include this number with your application to NSW.

All claims made in your EOI must be accurate and current. You are required to provide evidence for all claims in your EOI with your application to NSW. This includes where you currently reside and your skilled employment history (if applicable).


Step 2 - Complete the NSW nomination application form

Click here to access the application form.

When you lodge your application to NSW, you must provide:

  • A detailed resume or CV,
  • Your valid skills assessment,
  • English language test results, or a copy of your passport bio page if you are exempt,
  • Evidence of your employment and residency in a designated regional area in NSW and
  • Supporting documents for your EOI points claims


Step 3 - Complete your application fee payment

NSW nomination fees (AUD $330) are payable via this link using Visa or MasterCard. Application fees are non-refundable.

After completing your online payment, you will be sent your receipt by email to the address entered during the payment step. You must provide a copy of this receipt with your application.


Step 4 - Submit your application to NSW Treasury

Submit your application via email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You must include:

  • your completed NSW nomination application form
  • all supporting documents, and
  • your application payment receipt

This must be sent in one email only, with the subject line for your email in the following format:

  • Application - EOI number - SURNAME Given name - DOB
  • For example: Application - E0123456789 - SMITH John - 01/01/1990

When attaching your support documents, you must:

  • Use PDF format for all your documents,
  • Ensure your email does not exceed 50MB,
  • If the size of your supporting documents is greater than 50MB, only attach your most important documents. A case officer will contact you if they require further information when assessing your application.


Step 5 - After you have submitted your application

After you have submitted your application to NSW, you will receive an email from NSW Treasury acknowledging your application has been received.


Step 6 -  Wait for your application outcome

The standard processing time is four weeks; however, this can vary.

You may request to expedite your application only if the following situations apply to you:

  • your current visa is expiring within six weeks of submitting your application, or;
  • your skills assessment or English language test result will expire within four weeks of submitting your application, or;
  • you are losing points, which will reduce your total score to below 65 points, within four weeks of submitting your application. If you will lose points, and this does not reduce your total score below 65 points, you cannot request we expedite your application.

Visit the NSW Treasury website for more information. Remember, applications will close at 5pm Friday 26 June 2020.

As there is such a short timeframe to apply and for your application to be assessed, it is important that your nomination application is complete. This includes submitting all the required documents to demonstrate your eligibility. We can assist you to put forward a decision-ready application.


Our View

Seems like NSW has had a late realisation that everything is done by the migration program year, which is a basic policy of Australian immigration. This means that if NSW do not use their 2,745 invitations before 30 June, then they miss out for the 2020 year. They might even get a lower level of invitations in 2021, if they do not use their invitations in 2020!  In Immigration, you have to use it or you could lose it!  This move has all the hallmarks of the previous shambolic system for NSW when they used to open on an announced day for 190 and 489 applications, inevitably have their website crash and then close down again.

Do not be surprised if the system crashes when applications open next week. It is expected that applicants and migration agents from all over the world will be trying to apply all at once.


Do you need help?

At Work Visa Lawyers we are experienced in assisting applicants in all matters relating to Australian visa applications. Our areas of expertise include Partner Visas, Skilled Migration visas, Business Skills Migration visas, Employer Sponsored Work Visas and other Family Migration visas as well as the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) Review, Judicial Review and Ministerial Intervention.

If you require further information regarding your Australia visa options you can contact us through:

(08) 8351 9956 or +61 8 8351 9956 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



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