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Family accompaniment eligibility - for workers

What eligibility criteria need to be met?


To be considered for the pilot there are eligibility criteria that Pacific Australia Labour Mobility (PALM) scheme workers, their families and their employer will need to meet.

Checklist: worker eligibility criteria

1. Employer approval

Workers can participate in the family accompaniment pilot if they meet the eligibility criteria and their employer agrees. The employer will apply on behalf of the worker. If the employer does not agree, the worker cannot participate.

2. Long-term worker

The worker must be a long-term PALM scheme worker and have been in Australia for at least 10 months when they apply (as at 23 February 2024). This means a worker must have arrived in Australia before 23 April 2023. The worker must also have at least 18 months remaining on their visas. This means a worker must have a visa that is valid until 23 August 2025 or later.

3. Good track record

Workers cannot be on a probationary period or on a performance management plan.

4. Selected countries

Only workers from Kiribati and Timor-Leste will be able to apply in the first round.


Checklist: family eligibility criteria

1. Immediate family

Only immediate family members will be eligible to come to Australia under the pilot. This means a spouse or de facto partner of the worker and dependent children as defined by Australia’s migration legislation. This information will be verified as part of the visa application process.


  • an individual lawfully married to another individual.

De facto partner

A de facto relationship is one where you and your partner are not legally married to each other but:

  • you are committed to a shared life excluding all others
  • your relationship is genuine and continuing
  • you live together or do not live separately and apart on a permanent basis
  • you are not related by family.

Dependent children

To be eligible, the child must:

  • be a child or a stepchild from a current or previous relationship
  • not be married, engaged to be married, or have a de facto partner
  • be under 18 years of age; or
  • over 18 but under 23 and be dependent on the PALM scheme worker or partner. A child is considered dependent if wholly or substantially reliant on the PALM scheme worker or partner for their basic needs; or
  • over 23 but unable to earn a living to support themselves due to physical or cognitive limitations and be dependent on the PALM scheme worker or partner. The child will need to meet Australia’s visa health requirements; or
  • child of a dependent child.

2. English language skills

The spouse or partner must have basic or beginner English language skills.

3. Visa requirements

All family will need to meet Australia's visa requirements.

4. Pre-departure briefing

The spouse or partner must participate in a pre-departure briefing prior to leaving their home country.

If you are a PALM scheme worker and you and your family meet all of these criteria, the next step is to speak to your employer to see whether they are eligible for the family cccompaniment pilot and are willing to support your family’s application.

If your employer says 'no' to either of these questions, you will not be able to apply. Only your employer can submit an application on behalf of you and your family.

Please note: meeting all eligibility criteria does not guarantee selection for the pilot, as there are limited places available.