Employer Nomination Scheme visa (subclasses 121 and 856)

​This visa is closed to new applications.​


This visa is available to you if you are one of the following:
  • skilled worker from overseas
  • skilled temporary resident currently in Australia.


This visa allows you and any dependent family members included in your visa application to live as permanent residents in Australia. You can:

  • live and work in Australia on a permanent basis
  • study in Australia at school or university.

About this visa

The Employer Nomination visa (subclasses 121 and 856) closed to new applications on 1 July 2012. You can add your partner or a dependent child to your application if it has not yet been decided.

The Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) allowed Australian employers to sponsor employees who are foreign nationals for a permanent visa to work in Australia. The Employer Nomination visa (subclasses 121 and 856) visa is for applicants who were in Australia and lodged a visa application on or before 30 June 2012.

This visa allows you and your family to live and work in Australia on a permanent basis.


The visa application charges are listed in Fees and charges.

Other costs

You might have to pay other costs, such as the costs of health assessments, police certificates, or any other certificates or tests. You are responsible for making the necessary arrangements.

Visa holders

This information is for people who have been granted an Employer Nomination visa (subclass 121). It explains your rights and obligations.

You can use Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) for free to check your visa details and entitlements.

What this visa lets you do

This is a permanent visa. It allows you and your family to:

  • stay in Australia indefinitely
  • work and study in Australia
  • enrol in Medicare Australia's scheme for health-related care and expenses
  • take out private health insurance
  • access certain social security payments
  • be able to get Australian citizenship (if you are eligible)
  • sponsor eligible family members for permanent residence
  • travel to and from Australia for five years from the date the visa is granted (after that time you will need a resident return visa or another visa to return to Australia).

Your obligations

You and your family must comply with all visa conditions and Australian laws.

Employer obligations

The employer must comply with all relevant Australian standards and workplace legislation for wages and working conditions.

Report changes in circumstances

Tell us if your circumstances change. This includes a new residential address, a new passport, or a pregnancy, birth or death in your family.

You can use the following forms:

Success stories

Andy and Dawn with their children

When Andy and his wife Dawn headed to London from their home near Brighton for an Australian jobs expo, they had no idea they were taking the first steps on a journey that would take them to a new life half-way around the world.


Read more