Regional Sponsored Migration Visa


As Australia’s regions hum with untapped potential and cultural diversity, the Regional Sponsored Migration Visa (RSMS) unfurls as a channel that bridges aspirations with reality.

This visa is more than a bureaucratic procedure, The Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) Visa was conceived with a dual purpose: to address skill shortages in regional areas and to facilitate the permanent residency of skilled individuals who contribute to these communities.

This is a permanent visa that allows talented employees nominated by their company in Australia’s district areas to relocate and find employment in Australia indefinitely

This visa previously had two streams:

  1. Direct entry Stream and the
  2. Temporary residence transition stream

The Direct Entry Stream

​​​​​​​​From the Australian Department of Home Affairs official website, this visa is closed to new applications. ​ The direct entry stream was closed to new applications on November 16, 2019, due to the launch of the Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 494).

The Temporary residence transition stream

The temporary residence transition stream is offered to people who have worked for their sponsored employer in regional Australia for no less than three of the four years prior to their application for the subclass 187 visa. This visa allows talented people recommended by their employers in regional Australia to settle and find permanent employment in Australia.

Note that to be qualified for this visa type, you must be an interim subclass 457 or subclass 482 worker, you must have worked for your employer full-time for at least three years and you must be recommended by your employer.

The Temporary residence transition stream visa costs start from AUD4,640.00 and take about 16 months to be processed fully.

Criteria for Eligibility for the Regional Sponsored Migration Visa (Subclass 187)

The RSMS Visa demands a meticulous dance with eligibility criteria, ensuring that the synergy between skilled migrants and regional aspirations remains unwavering. Key eligibility factors encompass:

  • Sponsorship by Designated Employers: A prospective employer in a regional area must sponsor the applicant, vouching for their skills and commitment. In other words, you must be recommended by a regionally approved employer in Australia.
  • Occupation Suitability: The recommended occupation must align with the relevant occupation lists and exemplify the applicant’s expertise.
  • Your job must be located in regional Australia.
  • Typically, applicants must be under the age of 45 at the time of invitation to apply for the visa.
  • You must be the principal visa holder of any subclass 457/482 visa; this is very important.
  • English proficiency is required.
  • Satisfy the physical and character requirements.
  • Skill Assessment: Certain occupations mandate a formal skill assessment to validate qualifications and competence.
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Documents Required from the Recipient of the Regional Sponsored Migration Visa 187

If you are a potential recipient of 187 visa, these are the documents you need for your visa application;

  • Your Passport. A copy of your passport’s information page is required, and your passport must be valid at the time of application.
  • If you have an ID, please bring a copy of your national ID.
  • Evidence of skill evaluation. You may be needed to provide proof that you have the essential abilities to perform the job.
  • Documents pertaining to your name change.
  • Form 956 and Form 956a
  • Documents demonstrating your good character.
  • In most cases, you may be asked to provide evidence of license, registration, or participation.
  • Documents demonstrating your proficiency in the English language.

If you are bringing a partner, make sure to submit the  following form:

  • Identification documents
  • Documentations of their Character records
  • Their Documents for collaboration
  • Evidence showing their proficiency in the English language.

For applicants who intend to include family members under the age of 18, the following documents are required:

  • Proof of identity
  • Birth certificate
  • Form 1229 for parental consent
  • Statutory declaration
  • Adoption records if relevant

For applicants with family members aged 18 or older, the following documentation is necessary:

  • Proof of identity
  • Documentation pertaining to any additional relationships they may have (if relevant)
  • Character-related documents
  • Proof of dependence
  • Evidence of possessing functional proficiency in English

Documents Required from the Sponsor of the Regional Sponsored Migration Visa

Your sponsor is required to present several documents for your application:

  • Employment Agreement: This contract should outline either your basic salary or the annual market rate. If your earnings are below AUD 250,000, your employer is obligated to remunerate you at the annual market salary rate.
  • Business Legitimacy Proof: Your employer must provide evidence of the legality of their business operations. This might include documents such as tax certificates, business name registration certificates, and similar records.
  • Financial Statements (if applicable): If necessary, financial statements should also be submitted.
  • Written Declaration: Your employer needs to supply a statement affirming that you met the work conditions during your time holding a visa 457 or visa 482. This statement must encompass details like your work duration, instances of paid and unpaid leave, any international business trips, and more.
  • Documentation substantiating the alteration of sponsorship must be furnished. In instances where an employer modification took place during your tenure holding a visa 457 or visa 482, your current employer is required to demonstrate your continuous service under the same sponsor in the same role, spanning a duration of either three years or two years. Moreover, records pertaining to sales, business acquisitions, or organizational restructuring must be provided if they are applicable.
  • Verification of association with related businesses is necessary. If you were employed by an associated business, your sponsor must present corroborative proof that your employment was maintained under the same employer and at the same location for the specified work period.
  • Demonstration of compliance with training obligations is mandatory. Your sponsor needs to provide substantiating evidence showcasing their fulfillment of training requirements for each year of their sponsorship.
  • Validation of eligibility is crucial in cases where the nominated position is subject to conditions and is not included in the skills occupation list. To this end, your employer is obligated to submit documentation elucidating the rationale behind their belief in the eligibility of the nominated position.
  • The authentic requirement for an overseas employee must be established. Your employer is obligated to present compelling evidence supporting their genuine necessity for recruiting overseas workers to occupy the recommended position.
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Charting the Application Process for the Regional Sponsored Migration Visa application

Embarking on the Regional Sponsored Migration Visa Visa application journey involves strategic navigation:

First, a valid recommendation is required before applying for a visa 187. To designate you as a potential employee, your sponsor must complete an online application through the ImmiAccount. Your sponsor must fill out a recommendatory application form in ImmiAccount and upload the necessary documentation and details. They are not needed to make any payment for the RSMS visa 187 application.

Secondly, after completing a recommendatory application form and submitting it online, he/she will be assigned a transaction reference number or TRN. Make sure you have this number before submitting your visa application because you will need it to make a legitimate application.

Lastly, after your sponsor’s application recommendation has been granted, you can now apply for your 187 visa. To apply for the visa, you must fill out an online application through the ImmiAccount, and upload all the necessary documents.

It is important to bear in mind that Payment validates your visa application, which means you need to pay the application money to complete your application; without the visa fee, your application is invalid.

Are Family Members Allowed?

Yes, you can bring in the members of your family unit in your visa application at any time, whether before or after your visa is approved. There is no minimum age for this visa, however, all family members must have proficient English or pay a Second VAC.

All family members who apply for the visa must meet the Australian Government’s Health and Character requirements.

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The Transformative Benefits of the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme Visa

Beyond the veneer of permanence, the Regional Sponsored Migration Visa unfurls a bouquet of transformative advantages, enriching both individual lives and regional landscapes:

  • Permanence and Stability: Successful applicants grasp the hand of permanence, embracing a future intertwined with Australia’s regional fabric.
  • Community Enrichment: Skilled migrants become the lifeblood of regional communities, propelling growth and cultural exchange.
  • Professional Elevation: The RSMS Visa not only secures residency but also opens avenues for professional growth and skill enhancement.

By becoming a permanent resident in a regional Australian community through the Regional Sponsored Migration Visa (subclass 187), you’ll not only advance your career but also embrace a rich and diverse lifestyle. As you embark on the journey toward permanent residency, the promise of regional Australia’s unique charm and boundless opportunities awaits.

FAQs About Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme Visa (subclass 187)

Q: Can I change employers after obtaining this visa?

A: Yes, changing employers is possible, but the new employer must lodge a new nomination on your behalf.

Q: Is it possible to include family members in my visa application?

A: Absolutely, you can include your partner and dependent children in your application for the visa.

Q: Are there geographical limitations for living in a specific regional area?

A: Yes, the visa requires you to live and work in the designated regional area as specified in your visa conditions.

Q: Can I apply for Australian citizenship after obtaining this visa?

A: Yes, once you have held the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme Visa (subclass 187) for a specific period, you can apply for Australian citizenship if you meet the necessary criteria.

Q: Is there a specific age limit for the Direct Entry Stream?

A: Generally, the age limit for the Direct Entry Stream is 45 years.

By Michael

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