Last updated 20 May 2020

A points test exists for skilled sponsored migrants and independent migrants, and is set out in full in sch 6D of the Migration Regulations 1994 (Cth).

The points test is a mechanism used to help select skilled migrants who offer the most in terms of economic benefit to Australia. As part of the SkillSelect process, potential visa applicants will be tested in evidence and given a nominal score as part of the selection process. The points test focuses on:

  • English level
  • extensive skilled employment
  • high-level qualifications obtained in Australia and overseas
  • targeted age ranges.

Points are not awarded for specific occupations, although all applicants must still nominate an occupation on the Consolidated Sponsored Occupation List and have their skills assessed in their nominated occupation.

The pass mark for points-tested skilled migration visas invited through SkillSelect is 65 points from 1 July 2018. The points test applies to applicants for the following visas:

  • Skilled Regional Visa (provisional) (subclass 489)
  • Skilled Independent Visa (permanent) (subclass 189)
  • Skilled Nominated Visa (permanent) (subclass 190).

To apply for one of the above visas, applicants need to satisfy the following threshold requirements:

  • lodge an expression of interest on the SkillSelect online portal and receive an invitation to apply
  • be under 50 years of age at the time of applying for a visa
  • meet the threshold English language requirement of competent English
  • nominate and hold a skilled assessment for an occupation listed on the Skilled Occupation List at the time of lodging their expression of interest.

For the purpose of awarding points, the Department of Home Affairs considers skilled employment in the nominated occupation or a closely related occupation.

Generally, applicants will be able to request an opinion about their skilled employment claims from the relevant assessing authority when seeking their skills assessment. Applicants should contact the relevant assessing authority for further information about this process.