COVID-19: Visa extensions granted for certain subclasses

22 Feb 22

AUSTRALIA

The Australian government has extended the validities of Subclass 485, 489, 491 and 494 visas for those affected by the COVID-19 border closures.

Key Points:

  • Temporary Graduate Visas – Subclass 485. Subclass 485 visas are now valid until Sept. 30, 2022, for primary applicants who were offshore Australia at any time between Feb. 1, 2020, and Dec. 14, 2021, held or still hold a subclass 485 visa which would have expired before Oct. 1, 2022, did not have their 485 visa canceled and did not receive another visa.
  • Skilled Regional Provisional Visa – Subclass 489. Subclass 489 visa holders can extend the validity of their visa for three years from the original expiration date.
    • To be eligible for the extension of the subclass 489 visa, primary applicants must have been offshore Australia at any time between Feb. 1, 2020, and Dec. 14, 2021, must have held or still hold a subclass 489 visa and not have had their subclass 489 visa canceled.
  • Skilled Work Provisional Visas – Subclass 491 and Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional Visas – Subclass 494. Subclass 491 and 494 visa holders can now meet permanent residence requirements by extending the validity of their visa for three years from the original expiration date.
    • To be eligible for the extension of the subclass 491 or 494 visa, primary applicants must have been offshore Australia at any time between Feb. 1, 2020, and Dec. 14, 2021, have held a subclass 491 or 494 visa during that time and still in effect as of Feb. 18 and not have had  their subclass 491 or 494 visa canceled.

Additional Information: The aforementioned visa extensions are also applicable to dependents of the primary visa holder.

BAL Analysis: Travelers should check entry requirements before planning travel to Australia. The response to the COVID-19 pandemic continues to develop, and BAL will provide additional updates as information becomes available.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group. For additional information, please contact berryapplemanleiden@bal.com.

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