COVID-19 Pandemic Event Visa 408: New Australian Work Opportunities Temporary Visa Holders
After weeks of uncertainty about how the COVID-19 pandemic will affect them, Australian temporary visa holders have been given some much needed clarity by the Australian government through a new temporary visa called the COVID-19 Pandemic event Subclass 408 Visa.
The purpose of the new substream is to provide a pathway for eligible former and current holders of temporary visas who are unable to leave due to the COVID-19 pandemic, to lawfully stay in Australia. In addition, it is also implemented as a measure to respond to workforce shortages during the COVID-19 pandemic in high demand areas including, but not limited to, agriculture, aged care and public health.
The Department of Home Affairs has created a new substream under subclass 408 visa called the COVID-19 Pandemic event visa which allows you to remain in Australia in two situations:
- You have no other Australian visa options and are unable to depart Australia due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.
- To assist in critical sectors including healthcare, disability and aged care, childcare and agriculture during the COVID-19 pandemic.
There is no application fee for this COVID-19 Pandemic Event 408 visa and to be eligible you must:
- Be onshore (in Australia) and have 28 days or less remaining on your current visa or you have been on a bridging visa for less than 28 days since you last visa expired.
- Unable to apply for the same temporary visa you hold or held, or any other subclass of temporary visa, other than the Subclass 408 visa.
- Have not been previously granted a subclass 408 as a primary visa holder.
- Have enough money to support yourself and any dependent family members who are with you in Australia.
- Meet the Department of Home Affairs health and character requirements.
- Have adequate health insurance.
- Be a genuine temporary entrant.
- Not have had a visa cancelled or a previous application refused.
So, what does this all mean for temporary visa holders during the COVID-19 Pandemic?
Holders of temporary visas who are engaged in or have the relevant skills to undertake critical work relating to the provision of essential goods and services, are strongly encouraged to make use of this opportunity and help the wider Australian community in much needed areas.
If you are a Working Holiday Makers (WHMs) working in the critical sectors of health, aged and disability care, agriculture, food processing or childcare but are not eligible for a further WHM visa and you are unable to return to your home country, the solution for you now you can apply under the Temporary Activity (subclass 408 Visa) Australian Government Endorsed Event (AGEE) stream visa (under COVID-19 Pandemic event visa).
Those already in Australia with the Seasonal Worker Program whose visas are expiring will be able to extend their stay in Australia by applying for a Temporary Activity (subclass 408 Visa – Australian Government Endorsed Event (AGEE) stream) under COVID-19 Pandemic event visa.
Holders of other temporary work visas / TSS 482 visa /457 visa currently employed in critical sectors may also be eligible for a Temporary Activity (subclass 408 Australian Government Endorsed Event (AGEE) stream) visa (under COVID-19 Pandemic event visa).
Each visa 408 COVID 19 application is assessed on a case-by-case basis, the stay period for each area also remains unknown as it depends on the industry supported.
You and your family, should you have family members as dependents, must comply with all public health directions to stay safe and help fight COVID-19.
Here at ONE derland Consulting my team can advise you on the best visa option to stay safe and legal in Australia. We are offering complimentary visa consultations until 10 April 2020 for those affected by the coronavirus as a way to assist our community. Consultations can be done by phone, Skype or Whatsapp.
Ready to take that first step? Interested In Subclass 408 Visa?
ONE derland Consulting has 10 years experience dealing with all types of visas. We will take the time to compile all documents needed and guarantee that your application is 100% ready before submitting it.
To get started, simply click here to book an appointment with me to discuss your circumstances, I’d love to hear from you. Alternatively, please contact my team on 08 9477 5831, 03 9088 4114 and 02 9188 2065
Indah Melindasari is a migration agent registered with the Australian Migration Agents Registration Authority (MARA) with registration number of 0961448