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Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (subclass 187)


This visa is for skilled workers from outside Australia or skilled temporary residents who live and work in regional Australia. It has three streams.

  • The Temporary Residence Transition stream is for subclass 457 visa holders who have worked for two years and their employer wants to offer them a permanent position.
  • The Direct Entry stream is for people who have never, or only briefly, worked in the Australian labour market.
  • The Agreements stream is for people sponsored by an employer through a labour or regional migration agreement.


People can apply for this visa if they:

  • Want to live and work in regional Australia, meaning not in the Gold Coast, Brisbane, Newcastle, Sydney, Wollongong and Melbourne
  • Have been nominated by an approved Australian employer located in regional Australia
  • Are younger than 50 years of age
  • Meet the skills, qualifications and English language requirements.

How this visa works

The Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme visa (subclass 187) is for skilled workers from outside Australia or skilled temporary residents who currently live and work in Australia. It is part of the permanent Employer Sponsored visa program.

To apply for this visa, you must:

  • Be nominated by an approved employer who will nominate you for a position in their business in regional Australia.
  • Be younger than 50 years of age
  • Meet the skills and qualifications requirements
  • Meet English language requirements

There are exemptions relating to age, skills and English language ability. These depend on your nominated occupation, salary and past work experience.

If you do not have an employer who will nominate you, you can lodge an Expression of Interest through SkillSelect. Prospective employers and state and territory governments can then view your details and decide whether to nominate you for skilled migration.

If you owe the Australian Government money, you may not be eligible to be granted a visa until you have made arrangements to pay the debt.