457 Visa Application Requirements – English Language


To successfully apply for a Subclass 457 Visa, the primary 457 visa application requirements are required to demonstrate ‘Vocational English’ unless one of the exemptions listed below apply. There is no discretion in how these rules are interpreted – that means that you need to meet the requirements unless you’re able to claim an exemption.

Listening Reading Writing Speaking


5 5




4 14


PTE Academic


36 36






If you aren’t able to claim an exemption, you’ll need to meet the English Language Assessment test scores in the table on the right for a 457 Visa:

Your English Language assessment for a 457 Visa must have been completed no longer than 3 years immediately before the day on which your 457 Visa application application is submitted.


Exemptions from the English Language Assesment for 457 Visas

It’s worth noting that the below exemptions are the only ones available – if you don’t meet any of these criteria, then you will need to demonstrate your English language ability by the required IELTS or OET examination result.


Your Nationality

If you hold a passport from Canada, New Zealand, Republic of Ireland, the United Kingdom or the United States, you are exempted from the 457 English Language Assesment.


Your Education

You have completed at least 5 consecutive years of full-time study in a secondary and/or higher education institution where the instructing language is English. You will need to provide evidence of this from the institution.


Your salary

You are exempt if your base annual salary is at least AUD $180,001. This doesn’t include any additional income derived from bonuses, benefits, pension contributions etc.


Professions where registration, licence or membership is required

The Australian regulatory body for your profession/occupation may require that you can demonstrate a certain level of English language ability before you can obtain the registration, license or membership to work in your profession/occupation in Australia.

If the required level of English language ability is equivalent to more than at least a score 5.0 in each of the 4 test components for an IELTS examination, then you need to meet the higher level of English language ability that is set by the regulatory body.

You will need to provide evidence from the regulatory body which shows the level of English language ability that is set to obtain the required registration, license or membership, and also evidence to show that you meet this.

If a lower or if no level of English language ability is set by the regulatory body, and none of the above exemptions apply, then you still need to satisfy the English language requirement and complete an IELTS or OET examination.

Further reading

DIAC Website FAQs on 457 visa application requirements for Australia

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