The Northern Territory (NT) Government grants nominations under the subclass 491 and 190 visas for individuals who meet the visa eligibility criteria set by the Australian Government's Department of Home Affairs and can demonstrate strong employment outcomes in the NT and a long-term commitment to the NT workforce. Due to insufficient nomination allocations received from the Australian Government for the current program year (2023-24), the NT is currently unable to accept new applications for subclass 190 nominations.
The NT Government considers a range of factors to inform decisions on applications for nomination. The following guidelines are intended to assist potential applicants, and are subject to change at the discretion of the NT Government. Each application will be assessed on its own merits. NT nominations are issued at the discretion of the NT Government, and meeting these guidelines do not guarantee a nomination.
Specific guidelines are provided for applicants in the following categories:
- Eligible NT 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 that there may be delays with assessing applications from those who fall outside of 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 you 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 favourably
- 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 an eligible occupation may qualify for a subclass 491 nomination on an exceptional and case by case basis 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.