As of the 3rd of April 2020, a new visa has been introduced to help temporary visa holders that are currently stuck in Australia and provides them with a pathway to lawfully stay and work in Australia during the COVID-19 Pandemic.  

The Subclass 408 Visa is a Temporary Activity visa that allows you to live and work in Australia on a short-term basis, in specific activities or areas.

Given the Pandemic status of COVID-19, the Australian Government has decided to introduce the ‘COVID-19 Pandemic event for Subclass 408 (temporary activity) Visa’, which is a special visa option made available within the Subclass 408 Visa stream.  

Here are the requirements of this new visa:  

  • Your current visa must be expiring in no more than 28 days.  
  • You must be in Australia and are unable to depart as a result of the COVID-19 Pandemic.  
  • You are unable to apply for the same temporary visa that you currently hold, or have held or any other temporary visa other than this new visa.  
  • You are unable to depart Australia as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.  
  • You must be currently working in a critical sector during the COVID-19 crisis, including but not limited to, disability and aged care, healthcare, agriculture or childcare during the pandemic.  
  • You must have fully complied with all visa conditions for your current or last visa.  
  • You must have health insurance.  
  • You are not able to perform as an entertainer on this new visa.  

If you apply for the COVID-19 Pandemic visa, you will not have to pay anything as it is free to lodge your application.  

With this visa you can:  

  • Remain in Australia, if you have no other visa options are unable to leave Australia due to the COVID-19 travel restrictions.  
  • Remain in Australia to assist in critical sectors during the crisis (eg. healthcare, disability and aged care, childcare and agriculture)  

The Acting Minister for Immigration, Alan Trudge, recently announced a number of concessions and options that will be made available for temporary visa holders who are currently struggling due to the COVID-19 crisis.  

Below are other concessions that have been made for temporary visa holders:  

  • Subclass 457 and 482 workers that have been stood down but not fired are able to maintain their visa validity without the sponsor or the visa holder breaching any of their conditions and obligations. These visa holders will also maintain their visa validity and will not breach their visa conditions or sponsor obligations, if their hours worked have been reduced. Furthermore, these visa holders will have the opportunity to extend their stay in Australia by applying for a further visa, granted they meet the normal requirements.  
  • Temporary Skilled visa holders that are currently facing financial hardship over the pandemic will be able to access up to $10,000 of their Australian Superannuation.  
  • If an overseas worker is made redundant, they are expected to exit Australia, unless they find a new employer that aligns with their current visa conditions. If they are sponsored in Australia in the future, their original time spent in Australia will count towards their eligibility for a permanent visa stream.  

 If you need assistance or advice with your visa application, Results Migration agents are the best in the field, with a team of experienced migration lawyers and registered migration agents that are available to guide you through this complex area of law. Call Results Migration on 1800 808 717 or email us on [email protected] and book your free consultation today!