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Northern Territory Nomination Criteria 2023-2024

Northern Territory has been allocated 250 seats for 190 visa nominations and 400 seats for 491 visa nominations. Due to insufficient nomination allocations provided by the Australian Government for the current program year (2023-24), the NT Government cannot accept new subclass 190 nomination applications. Those who meet relevant criteria will be offered a subclass 491 nomination. This is because they have many pending 190 applications from last financial year.

To be eligible for a Northern Territory nomination, you must meet the Australian Department of Home Affairs and Migration NT’s criteria for your chosen visa category.

The Home Affairs criteria require you to:

  • have a points-test result of 65 or higher, inclusive of state nomination points;

  • have a positive skills assessment in your nominated occupation;

  • be under 45 years of age;

  • meet the minimum English language requirement of Competent, unless your assessing authority requires a higher level.

In addition to the above, you must also meet the Northern Territory (NT) Government requirements. These requirements can be changed at any time by the NT Government.

NT nominations are issued at the discretion of the NT Government, and meeting these requirements does not guarantee a nomination.

Please note the following general information:

  • If you or any of your migrating dependants are currently living interstate, you will not be eligible for the Northern Territory (NT) nomination.

  • If you or any of your migrating dependants are currently on a student visa and have not completed studies in an NT institution, you will not be eligible for NT nomination.

  • If you have already been nominated for a subclass 489 or 491 visa by the NT, you will not be eligible for a subclass 190 nomination.

Northern Territory has two categories for onshore applicants.

  • Eligible Northern Territory Graduates

  • Other NT Residents

Eligible Northern Territory Graduates

If you currently hold a Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) visa that does not expire before 1 July 2024 or if you are eligible to apply for a subclass 485 visa, you are unlikely to be offered a nomination in this program year, and your application may be refused. If you fall into this category, please consider applying in the new program year (commencing 1 July 2024).

Those who do not have access to a subclass 485 visa will be considered for a subclass 491 nomination subject to meeting the following criteria:

  • successfully completed one or more qualifications after studying in the NT, at an NT-based institution for two years in a single tertiary course or a set of nested tertiary courses and

  • Demonstrated genuine and sustained efforts to obtain employment from an NT employer in your nominated occupation or a closely related skilled occupation. This can be met through evidence of a number of applications made over a period of time for jobs in relevant occupations in the NT and other supporting evidence, such as membership in relevant professional associations or positive feedback from industry contacts in the NT.

Those working in their nominated occupations or in critical sectors (healthcare, education, and hospitality) will be prioritised for nomination. This means there may be delays in assessing applications from those who fall outside this category.

Other NT Residents

An NT resident applicant includes those on temporary visas with work rights currently residing in the NT.

NT resident applicants will be considered for a subclass 491 nomination if they meet the following requirements:

  • demonstrate that you have been residing in the NT for at least 12 consecutive months

  • demonstrate that none of your migrating dependants are residing in another part of Australia and

  • demonstrate full-time employment in the NT in an eligible occupation for at least six consecutive months immediately prior to applying for NT nomination and demonstrate that the employment is available for at least a further 12 months.

An eligible occupation for this purpose is:

  • the occupation identified in the skills assessment (nominated occupation) or

  • an occupation that is related to the nominated occupation. In order to be related to the nominated occupation, the majority of time in the position must be spent on tasks that align with the skills and knowledge required to undertake the nominated occupation.

The employment must also meet the following additional requirements:

  • the position must be based in the NT, and the employer must have a record of trading in the NT for at least 12 months

  • positions that are based at serviced office spaces or involve hot-desking arrangements will generally not be considered favorably

  • you must be paid at market salary.

Applicants who have not been employed in an eligible occupation will generally not qualify for NT nomination.

Applicants who have been employed on a full-time basis for at least six consecutive months in an occupation that is not eligible may qualify for a subclass 491 nomination on an exceptional and case-by-case basis if they are employed in one of the following critical sectors: health, aged or disabled care, education (including childcare), and hospitality.

Applicants who are on a Temporary Work (Skilled)(subclass 457) or Temporary Skill Shortage visa (subclass 482) must provide a letter of support from your current subclass 457 or subclass 482 sponsoring business stating that they:

  • support your visa application

  • understand that you will not be tied to their business once the subclass 491 / subclass 190 visa is granted.

The NT Government may contact your employer. There may be circumstances where the need for support from your current employer can be waived.

Criteria for Offshore applicants.

Offshore applicants will generally only be nominated for a subclass 491 visa. Priority Occupation Stream for offshore applications will be limited to 54 occupations listed on the new NT Offshore Migration Occupation List.

Offshore applicants must meet the minimum requirements above and meet the following NT nomination criteria:

  • have post-qualification work experience of at least one year in your nominated occupation in the last ten years (note: additional work experience required for some occupations under the priority occupations stream)

  • demonstrate a genuine commitment to live and work in the NT on a long-term basis

  • have evidence of financial capacity to settle in the NT

  • meet criteria against one of the three streams below.

Please note: those applying under the NT Family stream or the NT Job Offer stream can nominate any occupation on the national eligibility list

1. Priority occupation stream

Offshore applicants under this stream must:

2. NT Family Stream

Offshore applicants under this stream must:

  • have a family member in the NT who:

  • is an Australian citizen, an Australian permanent resident, an eligible New Zealand citizen (see definition on Home Affairs website), or hold one of the following visas:

  • Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa subclass 491

  • Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) visa subclass 494

  • Skilled Regional (Provisional) visa subclass 489

  • a bridging visa granted in association with an application for a Skilled Regional Visa subclass 887 or Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) subclass 191 visa

  • is usually resident in the Northern Territory and has been living in the NT for at least 12 months

  • is the applicant’s eligible relative* or their partner’s eligible relative if their partner also intends to apply for the same visa (see below for a definition of eligible relative)

  • has confirmed in a statutory declaration that they are willing and able to provide settlement support to the applicant and migrating dependants, including assistance with finding accommodation and employment in the NT

  • have evidence of sustained efforts to seek employment in the NT, including evidence of research into the NT job market, and sustained records of applying for jobs in the NT or making contact with NT employers

an eligible relative must be the applicant’s or their spouse/partner’s:
  • parent

  • child or step-child

  • brother, sister, adoptive brother, adoptive sister, step-brother or step-sister

  • aunt, uncle, adoptive aunt, adoptive uncle, step-aunt, or step-uncle

  • nephew, niece, adoptive nephew, adoptive niece, step-nephew, or step-niece

  • first cousin, or

  • grandparent

3. NT Job Offer Stream

Offshore applicants under this stream must have a verifiable job offer in their nominated occupation for a job that is based in the NT with an NT business/organisation that has been actively operating in the NT for at least 12 months.


The information shared by Nationwide Migration and Education on social media and blogs is for general informational purposes only. (The information is accurate at the time of publication but may be subject to change.) It is not legal or immigration advice and should not be relied upon as such.

If you need immigration advice specific to your circumstances, please book a consultation with our Registered Migration Agent.

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