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Coronavirus and Working Holiday Maker visa holders in Australia

Posted on April 13, 2020
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Australia Working Holiday Visa

In Australia many temporary work visa holders in the country have been affected by restrictions imposed by the government due to COVID-19. As you know, the working holiday visa was introduced to allow foreigners between the age of 18 to 30 to visit Australia  for 12 months and involve in casual and short-term work so that the travelers have enough money to continue their holiday.

The visa holders can also study for up to four months and move in and out of the country till the visa is valid. Here we will try and answer the common questions of Working Holiday Makers (WHM) visa holders in the current situation.

What is the government doing to help the industries dependent on working holiday makers?

The government is providing flexible arrangements for WWHM visa holders to work in the critical sectors of health, aging and disability treatment, agriculture, food manufacturing, and childcare.

WHMs working in these essential sectors will be excluded from the six-month restriction on employment with one employer and are eligible to apply for a further visa if they want to continue working in these sectors especially if their current visa expires within the next six months.

When a WHM works in critical sectors such as healthcare, aging and disability care, agriculture, food processing or childcare but is not eligible for a further WHM visa and is unable to return to their home country, they may apply a Temporary Activity (subclass 408) Stream Visa for the Australian Government Endorsed Event (AGEE).

Can I extend my existing visa to remain in Australia if I cannot return to my country of origin?

You can apply for another WHM visa if you have served on your first WHM visa for three months or on your second WHM visa for six months.

For visa holders of subclass 417 (Working Holiday) the following industries and areas are accepted as specified work:

  • Bushfire recovery work in declared bushfire affected areas only, carried out after 31 July 2019
  • Tree farming and felling in regional Australia
  • Plant and animal cultivation in regional Australia
  • Fishing in regional Australia
  • Mining in regional Australia
  • Construction in regional Australia

Before your current visa expires, you can apply for a new Visa. You may be eligible for a bridging visa with which you can lawfully stay in the country until your visa application is finalized.

I have sent my second or third WHM visa submission. May I continue to work as I await a decision on my application?

During the processing of your new application, a bridging visa will be issued which usually carries the same conditions as your previous visa, including in relation to work rights. You can check on your work rights with the Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) at any time along with your employer.

Take the help of an immigration consultant for best advice in the current situation.

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

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