ENS (186) Direct Entry
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ENS Direct Entry Visa Assistance

AIS Migration provide visa advice and application assistance for ENS Direct Entry visa applicants to Australia, plus many more visa schemes. Our migration agents have years of experience helping applicants just like you obtain permanent residency and working visas. Whether you require specialised assistance for the application, or simply need tailored advice to select the right visa for your circumstances, we’re here to help. Get in touch with us on +61 7 3216 0052 or send us an enquiry. We also offer skype bookings for one-on-one advice.

Features and Overview:

The Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) Direct Entry visa (subclass 186) is a visa scheme suited to skilled workers intending to work in specific occupations. It entitles the visa holder the ability to work, study and live in Australia indefinitely, with the option to apply for Australian citizenship at a later date, if eligible. This visa can be applied for by applicants living inside or outside of Australia. If you already hold a temporary working visa (such as a 482 visa) and live in Australia, we recommend looking at the ENS Temporary Visa Transition.



To obtain a 186 (ENS Direct Entry) visa, you must:

  • have an occupation that is on the list of eligible skilled occupations
  • have at least 3 years relevant work experience, unless you are exempt
  • have a positive skills assessment, unless you are exempt

The occupations list for ENS visa applicants is available here.

Application Process:

Currently, 75% of applicants for this visa are processed within 12 months, with 90% being processed within 15 months. You should obtain nomination from your intended employer, have an English test and skills assessment (see below) before applying for this visa.

Skills Assessment:

Those applying for a permanent ENS (subclass 186) visa must conduct a skills assessment in their relevant field in order to be considered for the visa. The skills assessment must be conducted by an authorised authority and be specific to your intended occupation. The occupations list for ENS visa applicants lists the relevant authority to obtain a skills assessment from.

Other Requirements:

  • You must pass the character and health
  • If registration with an industry body, membership or licensing is required for your occupation in the state or territory you work in, you must obtain it.
  • You must be nominated by the Australian business you intend to work for, and apply for the visa within 6 months of receiving the nomination.
  • You usually must be under the age of 45 at the time of application.
  • You need to have competent English. See the thresholds and requirements for various English tests here. You are exempt from this requirement if you went to secondary school for five years where all classes were taught in English.
  • You must obey all Australian laws during your residency.
  • You must have paid back any debt owing to the Australian government, if any.
  • You must have not had a visa previously cancelled.
  • You need at least 3 years full-time relevant work experience and have a positive skills assessment.


Standard application fees start from $4,115, with additional fees necessary for any family members you have on your application. If your additional applicants do not have functional English, a second instalment of $4,890 for each additional applicant will apply.

Is this visa right for me?

If you’re an experienced and skilled worker in the relevant field, this visa could be the perfect option for you. It grants permanent residency to you and any dependent family members, if the visa is finalised. The application process does take a little longer than temporary working visas, so if you need to obtain work in Australia in a shorter time frame, it may be more suitable to apply for something like a Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) subclass 482 visa, and then transitioning to a 186 at a later date.

AIS Migration have skilled Australian visa agents on hand to provide you with tailored advice and find the most suitable visa scheme for your needs. We can assist you throughout the application process to ensure everything goes smoothly and efficiently. We pride ourselves on keeping things simple and stress-free. Booked skype meetings are available for one-on-one assistance at a time that best suits you.


Get in touch with a migration agent today for personalised assistance. Call +61 7 3216 0052 or send us an enquiry.