186 Employer Nomination Scheme

The Employer Nomination Scheme ENS subclass 186 is open to businesses that are actively and lawfully operating anywhere in Australia.  There are three streams under this Australian visa subclass:

  • Temporary Residence Transition (TRT)
  • Direct Entry (DE)
  • Agreement

The 186 ENS Employer Nomination stream may be available if your employer wishes to sponsor you for permanent residence.

ENS Employer Nomination Scheme subclass 186

Temporary Residence Transition (TRT)

You may be eligible under this stream if 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.

Our migration agents will assess all your visa options and provide a clear outline of the best visa pathway for you.

Direct Entry (DE) stream

If you do not meet the requirements under the ENS TRT stream (for example, because you have never, or only briefly worked in Australia), this stream may then be available if your employer still wishes to sponsor you for permanent residence.

​Labour Agreement (LA) stream

This stream may be available if your employer wishes to sponsor you for permanent residence and has entered into a labour agreement with the Department that provides for a permanent residence pathway.

Eligibility- All streams

​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
  • at the time of lodgement, have appropriate English language skills
  • meet health and character requirements
  • meet the requirements of the stream in which you apply.

ENS Nomination

You can apply for this visa only after you have been nominated by your employer in Australia. You must lodge your ENS visa application within six months of the nomination being approved. You must apply for the visa in the stream and occupation in which your employer nominated you, or your application could be refused.


Even if you are older than 45 years of age, you can still apply for this ENS visa in certain circumstances

Important: you may also be able to apply for a visa under the TRT stream if you are over 45 years of age but under 50, 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.

​English language requirements

You can show that your English is adequate by providing evidence at the time of application ​

Skills, qualifications and experience

You must have the required skills and qualifications for the position you have been nominated for

Important:These requirements are different depending on the stream that you are nominated for.


You must meet certain health requirements. The results of your health examinations are generally valid for 12 months. This applies to all members of your family unit included in your application, whether they are migrating or not.


You must meet certain character requirements. You must provide a police certificate from each country you have lived in for 12 months or more during the past 10 years after you turned 16 years of age.

This applies to you and all members of your family unit listed in your application, whether they are migrating or not.

186 News Updates

Important Changes to Labour Market Testing

For nominations lodged on or after 1 October 2020, sponsoring employers must place 3 advertisements before lodging their nomination. the nominated position must now be advertised on the Government’s jobactive website And two other advertisements Advertising must be placed within the 4 months immediately before lodging a nomination application, unless the sponsor or an associated entity…

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Vetasess have announced changes to the employment and training requirements for Pathway 1 assessments through TRA The amount of verifiable employment evidence a Pathway 1 (no Australian qualification) : Licensed trade with no formal training – six years work experience Licensed trade with formal training – four years work experience Non-licensed trade with no formal…


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From the 1 July 2017 the age limit for Employer Nomination Scheme subclass 186 via direct entry and RSMS subclass 187 via Direct Entry was lowered from under 50 to under 45 years of age.    The age limit for those applying under the transition stream remains at under 50 years of age.   Contact our Migration…

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