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191 PERMANENT RESIDENCE VISA- 491 VISA PATHWAY

Updated: Dec 27, 2022

Have you ever considered applying for a 191 visa? 191 visa allows people on an eligible visa to live and work in Australia permanently. In this blog, I will talk about the 191 Permanent Residence Skilled Regional Visa Subclass 191, which commenced on 16 November 2022.


In this blog, we cover the following:

  1. How to get Permanent Residence Visa in Australia?

  2. What is a 191 Permanent Residence Visa?

  3. What are the two streams under Permanent Residence Visa?

  4. What are the criteria for each stream?


The 191 Permanent Residence Skilled Regional Visa Subclass 191 commenced on 16 November 2022. This visa allows people who have lived and worked in designated regional areas of Australia on an eligible visa to live and work in Australia permanently. With this visa, you can work and study anywhere in Australia and sponsor eligible family members of permanent residence. If eligible, become an Australian citizen.


There are two streams for this visa, the Regional Provisional Stream and Hong Kong Regional Stream.


Let's look at the first stream, the Regional Provisional Visa Stream. For this stream, the primary applicant must hold an eligible visa which is a 491 or a 494 visa. You must have owned this visa for at least three years before you apply. You must provide copies of notices of assessment and any notices of amended assessments in relation to three relevant income years for the primary applicant. The legislative instrument specifies an amount for the applicant's taxable income that has yet to be released.


The applicant must comply substantially with the conditions while holding a 491 or 490 visa.


The conditions are:

  • 8578, which must notify of certain changes.

  • 8579, must live, work, and study in a designated regional area.

  • 8580, must provide evidence of address.

  • 8581, must attend an interview.

Now, let's look at the criteria for Hong Kong Regional Stream. The criteria for the primary applicant is that the applicant complies substantially with the conditions to which the following reasons are subject:

  • Subclass 457, which is the temporary work skilled visa,

  • Subclass 482, which is the temporary skilled shortage visa.

  • Subclass 485, the temporary graduate visa held by the applicant at the time of application, and any subsequent bridging visa held by the applicant.


During the three years, ending immediately before the date of application. The applicant did not live, work or study in a part of Australia that was not a designated regional area. Please note that there are no minimum points or age requirements for the 191 visa. But like any other permanent visa, you still have to meet the health and character requirements.


Primary applicants for the subclass 191 visa must hold a pathway visa, being, for applicants in the Regional Provisional Stream, one of the skilled regional provisional visa Subclass 491 and 494. For applicants in the Hong Kong stream, a valid temporary work subclass 457 visa, a temporary skill shortage Subclass 482 visa, or the temporary graduates Subclass 485 visa. These pathway results are not subject to having a No Further Stay Condition imposed.


However, a secondary applicant, a family unit member, or the subclass 191 visa applicant is not required to hold a pathway visa. And may hold a different visa, such as a student visa or other visa type, which could be subject to a no Further State Condition.


The migration amendments subclass 191 visas waiver of conditions regulations 2022 amend the Migration Regulations 1994 to support family unity for skilled workers by enabling family members to join a subclass 191 visa application without departing Australia. However, there may be impacted family members, for example, a spouse in Australia on a student visa with no Further State Condition. These amendments ensure that it may waive such conditions to enable genuine family members to join the permanent visa application without having to depart Australia. The amendments commenced on 12 November 2022 to align with the required system changes.


If you have any questions regarding the 191 permanent visa or looking to apply for this visa, please get in touch with us.


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