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Subclass 408 visa

COVID-19 Pandemic Visa

In response to the Covid-19 Pandemic, immigration has announced a new stream of the subclass 408 visa, specifically for temporary visa holders who are stuck in Australia with a visa expiring.

COVID-19 Pandemic Visa

This visa may allow temporary visa holders to apply for a visa to remain in Australia lawfully. Please note, the visa is created as a visa of last resort. The visa you can only apply for if there are no other options. It was also created to assist employment in occupations that are in high demand during this pandemic such as health care, aged care and agriculture. This is not a visa everyone can apply for if their visa is about to expire.

The intention of the visa is that it allows applicants who cannot apply for any other visa to remain in Australia and work in required industries (agriculture, health or aged care). I believe there is A LOT of room for immigration case officer discretion when reviewing the visa applications.

Eligibility

You must be in Australia

You must be unable to depart Australia

You currently hold a visa that is expiring in 28 days or your visa has already expired (within the past 28 days)

You are unable to make a visa application for any other visa application

You must be working or intending to work in occupations that are in shortages during the COVID-19 pandemic in relation, specifically but not limited to, agriculture, aged care and public health.

You must have substantially complied with the conditions of your last visa.

You must have health insurance.

COVID-19 Pandemic Visa

In response to the Covid-19 Pandemic, immigration has announced a new stream of the subclass 408 visa, specifically for temporary visa holders who are stuck in Australia with a visa expiring. This visa may allow temporary visa holders to apply for a visa to remain in Australia lawfully. Please note, the visa is created as a visa of last resort.

Do you get work rights?

If you are working in a critical sector (aged care, health care, childcare, agriculture, food processing or disability care), you may receive work rights with the 408 visa. If you are not working in a critical sector, you will not receive work rights on the 408 visa.

You DO NOT need a sponsor to apply for this visa. However, when applying it would be a good idea to provide evidence you are working or intend to work in a critical sector. This could come in the form of a job offer or evidence of continuing employment in a critical sector occupation or evidence of registration in a critical sector occupation.

What jobs can I work in?

Immigration recently provided additional information on critical sector occupations, stating: agriculture, food processing, health care, aged care, disability care or child care. Find more on the immigration announcement here. If you are working in these fields and your visa is about to expire, this visa could be for you.  However, if you are not working in a critical sector, you may want to consider another visa type such as a student visa, visitor visa or other visas.

Frequently Asked Questions

In case you don’t find an answer to your question, feel free to consult with one of our agents.

What visa do I need to hold to apply for this visa?
You do not need to hold any specific visa. You may be able to apply for this visa if you hold a working holiday visa (Subclass 417 or 462), Temporary Work Visa (subclass 403) or even potentially Student visa (Subclass 500) and Employer Sponsored visas (Subclass 457 or 482).
How long will this visa be valid for?
The visa can be granted for up the length of the event (Covid 19 pandemic) – so most likely 6 – 12 months.
If I am on a visitor visa, can I apply for this visa?
Yes potentially, but only if you can show that you are needed in an occupation that is critically short in Australia. Please note in most circumstances, you may want to consider applying for an onshore Subclass 600 – Visitor visa, if possible.
I am on a working holiday visa, but not working in a critical sector. Can I apply for this visa?
You can apply, but if it is approved, you would not be granted work rights. So you could not work in Australia. In addition, if you are eligible to apply for a visitor visa or other visa, you may want to consider applying for this visa.
Where can I find more information on this visa?

You can check the immigration webpage. Although it is really confusing and does not provide clear instructions.

I work in construction, can I apply for this visa and get work rights?
You can apply. But the visa may not be approved. And if it is approved, you would not be granted work rights. Immigration has updated its website to state this visa is for application to remain in Australia to assist in critical sectors including healthcare, disability and aged care, childcare and agriculture during the COVID-19 pandemic.

GET IN TOUCH

In case of questions, feel free to reach out to one of our experienced Registered Migration Agents.

Contact details

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408 Visa – Temporary Activity Visa for COVID-19 was last modified: April 29th, 2020 by Pathway to Aus