187 Australian Permanent Work Visa – Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS)

The 187 Visa is a Permanent Visa for people Nominated by a business operating in ‘Regional Australia’.

This visa allows the holder and accompanying family members to remain permanently in Australia. The employee must commence work within six months of approval and continue to work for the employer in the regional area for 2 years.

The processing time for the 187 visa can take from 5 – 6 months.

The 187 Visa requires three separate applications; Regional Certification, Employer Nomination and a Visa Application.

Benefits of Applying for RSMS (187 Visa) over ENS (186 Visa)

  • Under the Direct Entry Stream the employer does not need to meet the training requirement applicable to other business sponsored visas.
  • There is a wider range of occupations with a lower skill requirement.
  • Most occupations do not need a Skills Assessment.
  • RSMS (187 Visa) has the quickest processing time in the Skilled Migration Program.
  • There is no application fee for the Nomination application; however there is a fee for the Regional Certification.


There are two distinct pathways that enable applicants to obtain this visa:

  • The Temporary Residence Transition Stream enables existing 457 visa holders who have worked for their sponsoring employer for 2 years to apply based on a further Nomination by their existing employer.
  • The Direct Entry Stream enables Visa applicants who demonstrate the required qualifications and/or experience to apply for this visa if Nominated by their employer.

Limited exemptions apply to Age, Skill and English Language ability.

Regional Certification Application

Prior to the lodgement of the Nomination application a Regional Certifying Body (RCB) Application must be lodged  to approve the position on offer to the visa applicant. The RCB has a responsibility for assessing that the employer is offering the Market Rate of salary, that an Australian employee cannot be sourced from the local labour market and that there is a genuine need for the business to employ the visa applicant.

RCB’s are appointed by the Department of Immigration for each different regional area. Each RCB has different criteria for approval. There is a fee determined by the RCB for making an application.

Labour Market Testing

The Nominating business must demonstrate that it cannot find a suitably qualified Australian candidate for the position from the local area.

RSMS Regional Areas

The following are considered Regional areas for the 187 RSMS Visa:

  • Western Australia
  • South Australia
  • Tasmania
  • ACT
  • Northern Territory
  • New South Wales (NSW) – all areas excluding: Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong
  • Victoria – all areas excluding Melbourne
  • Queensland– all areas excluding Brisbane

Application Fees

Service Fees
RSMS Visa Application Fee $3600
Professional Fees $4400
* Regional Certification Fee determined by individual Regional Certifying Bodies.  



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