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Australia visa rules and COVID-19

Posted on April 1, 2020
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Australia Visa

In the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic, the Australian government has introduced restrictions and measures to help visa holders of various categories. These include citizenship applicants, student visa holders, those on a visit visa or on a bridging B visa. Let us look at these restrictions in more detail.

Citizenship applicants:

Those who have applied for citizenship must satisfy the ‘residence requirement’. This means that they should have stayed in the country for more than four years including one year as a PR visa holder. If the presents visa restrictions prevent a citizenship applicant from fulfilling these requirements there will be no relaxation to these requirements. They will have to fulfil these requirements whenever they are able to come back to Australia.

Student visa holders:

Those on a student visa currently residing in Australia can attend online classes since face to face classes have been cancelled. The need to maintain the required attendance and the course requirements will be met if they attend the online classes.

Earlier student visa holders could work for only 40 hours in a fortnight but under the present conditions they can work for more than 40 hours in supermarkets to meet the high demand for essential items. This increase in work hours is only for a short term and is applicable for students working in supermarkets.

Visitor visa holders:

Visitor visa holders who are currently in Australia and are unable to return to their home country due to COVID restrictions can apply for an extension of their visitor visa within Australia but those with visa with a no further stay clause cannot apply for an extension. They can consider visa options such as an onshore visitor (subclass 600) visa to extend their stay or seek the help of a migration consultant.

Bridging Visa B holders:

These visa holders who are unable to return to Australia before their visa expires will need to apply for and will be granted a visitor visa before returning to Australia. Once you reach Australia you can apply for a Bridging Visa A.

The visa restrictions introduced due to COVID-19 need not necessarily apply to every situation or every visa holder. It is better they seek the advice of immigration consultants before taking a decision.

If you are looking to Study, Work, Visit, Invest or Migrate to Australia, talk to Y-Axis, the World’s No.1 Immigration & Visa Company.

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