New Australian Points System

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Revised Points System of November 2019

The Australian Skilled Migrant points system has been revised points, so skilled migrants have new ways to earn points towards their score.

The amendments to the point system follow the recommendation of the Productivity Commission. In its 2016 report, the Productivity Commission recommended that the points system be amended so that secondary applicants with skills and other desirable employment-related characteristics contribute significantly to the point score of the primary applicant.

The explanatory statement issued by the Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs stated, “The amendments introduce a revised points system for the subclass 491 visa as well as existing General Skilled Migration visas. Points are awarded for attributes that are linked with the applicant’s ability to make the greatest economic contribution, as the key purpose of the skilled migration program is to maximise the economic benefits of migration to Australia.”

New points awards are:

  • 15 points for nomination by a family member or a regional part of a state or territory
  • Ten points for Masters or PhD level Australian qualification in specific areas (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics – STEM).
  • Ten partner points, special rules apply – see below
  • Five points if your partner who can demonstrate Competent English. The partner can be over 45 years of age and does not need to work in a skilled occupation
  • Points will still apply based on your age, qualification, years of overseas and/or Australian skilled work experience, Australian study and English skills, as they do under the 489 visa and other skilled visas.
  • Partner Points
  • Applicants may receive 10 points for a partner if one of the following applies:
  1. They have a skilled partner. This means that their partner is under 45 years of age, obtains a positive skill assessment in a job on the same shortage list as the applicant and has Competent English; or
  2. They are single, or
    They have a partner who is an Australian permanent resident or an Australian citizen

Ranking Systems

The 491 pathway has a ranking system for an invitation to apply. The rankings are:

  1. Equal first: Applicant with a skilled partner OR applicants without a partner
  2. Second: Applicant with a partner who can demonstrate Competent English (but does not have the skills for skilled partner points)
  3. Third: Applicant with a partner who is ineligible for either competent English or Skilled partner points.

Online Assessment form