Upcoming Changes to The Points Test That Could Help You

Immigration has recently announced the new changes to the points test which could mean it could be easier for you to reach the points needed. These changes will be introduced in November 2019.

These changes in the points test will affect newly introduced new Skilled Regional Visa (Subclass 491), as well as other existing General Skilled Migration (Subclass 489, Skilled Independent – 189, State Nominated Subclass – 190) visas. In order to apply for the Skilled State (190) or Regional Nominated (190), the applicant is still required to be nominated by a State or Territory. The Applicant would still need to have a full skills assessment in an occupation that is on the State or Territory Skilled Occupation List. 

You can read the official migration amendment here. However the changes that simple version of the changes that are going to be in introduced in November 2019 are listed below:

  • more points for having a skilled spouse or de facto partner (10 points);
  • more points for applicants nominated by a State or Territory government or sponsored by a family member residing in regional Australia (15 points);
  • more points for having certain STEM qualifications (10 points);
  • points for applicants who do not have a spouse or de facto partner (10 points); and
  • points for applicants with a spouse or de facto partner who has competent English (5 points).


You can calculate your points on the Pathway to Aus points test here. Please note the points test does not reflect the upcoming changes to the points test.

What these Changes Indicate

In order to apply for these visas, applicants are awarded points for attributes that immigration believe will make the greatest economic contribution. These changes clearly show that:

  • Immigration wants to ease congestion in the city and make more immigrants to live and work in regional areas.
  • Immigration want you have a skilled partner who can speak English or no partner.

What are Regional Areas:

At the commencement of the new regional provisional visas will include all of Australia except for Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane and the Gold Coast.


More Powers to the State and Territories

As previously mentioned, to apply for the Skilled State (190) or Regional Nominated (190), the applicant is still required to be nominated by a State or Territory. Therefore even if you have a full skills assessment and are working in a regional area, the State or Territory does not need to approve your nomination. If your occupation is not on the State Occupation List, then you can’t get nominated by that state.

In addition to this each individual state or territory may have specific requirements for State Nomination. Some examples of common state requirements include:

  • That you have worked in the state or region for 6 months
  • That you have sufficient finances to support yourself in Aus
  • That you have a certain level of work experience
  • That you have an offer of employment


If you have any questions about the changes to the upcoming points test and how it could affect you, feel free to contact Pathway to Aus:

  • P: +61 7 55 265 900