readers should be aware that the Migration Regulations change rapidly. Before using the information listed here, it is a good idea to check that the law has not changed by telephoning one of the free immigration law advice bodies listed in “Contacts“.

One of the best sources of information is the website of the Australian Government Department of Home Affairs (previously called the Department of Immigration and Border Protection) at

Permanent entry visa: Economic migration

Last updated

30 June 2018

Independent and sponsored skilled migrants

The migration law states that to enter, an independent migrant must be invited to apply for a subclass 189 visa and gain at least 60 points in the points test, set out above, as it applies to the independent category. Independent category applicants cannot take advantage of the extra points for having a state or territory government sign a sponsorship. Note that since 1 July 2011, being sponsored by a relative no longer gains an applicant any points unless the relative lives in a designated area of Australia.

Designated areas of Australia

Applicants for a skilled – regional-sponsored (provisional) visa, who have a relative in that area gain extra points under the points test. The sponsor must usually be a resident in a designated area.

State or territoryDesignated areas
South AustraliaAnywhere
Northern TerritoryAnywhere
Australian Capital TerritoryAnywhere
QueenslandPostcode areas 4019–4028, 4037–4050, 4079–4100, 4114, 4118, 4124–4150, 4158–4168, 4180–4899 (anywhere except Brisbane metropolitan area)
Western AustraliaAnywhere
New South WalesPostcode areas 2311–2312, 2328–2333, 2336–2490, 2535–2551, 2575–2739, 2787–2898 (anywhere except Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong)
Designated areas for Australian sponsors

Back to
Government and the individual