What’s the Big News on the COVID-19 Pandemic Event Visa?
The Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs, the Hon. Andrew Giles, announced that the COVID-19 Pandemic Event stream of the Subclass 408 visa will no longer accept new applications starting from 2 September 2023.
Why was this decision made?
Minister Giles highlighted that the Pandemic Event visa played a crucial role during the pandemic. This announcement is no surprise and has been anticipated since the re-opening of Australia’s borders. The government encourages these visa holders to look into other visa options or consider their departure plans.
Minister Giles said that “The Pandemic Event visa was an important part of Australia’s visa system during the pandemic. Many people on temporary visas helped Australia during this period. We’re providing an opportunity for people who hold a Pandemic Event visa to explore another visa option, or plan to leave Australia.”
Key Answers for Current Holder of Subclass 408 Visa.
If you hold a Subclass 408 visa under the COVID-19 Pandemic Event stream, here are answers to your key questions:
What Options Do Current Holders of the Subclass 408 Visa Have?
Current holders can renew their current visa up to its final phase-out in February 2024. They will then need to secure a new visa type or make arrangements to leave.
What other Visas can Current Holders of Subclass 408 visa apply for?
This needs to be considered on a case by case basis depending on individual circumstances.
How Long Will the Renewed Visa Last For Current Holders?
Renewed visas will only be approved for a period of six months.
Are There Any Changes in the Visa Application Fee?
Yes, visa applicants will now be required to pay a fee of $405, and the application fee will no longer be waived.
How Can One Get in Touch for Further Assistance on This Matter?
If you presently hold a Subclass 408 visa under the COVID-19 Pandemic Event stream, Timpson Immigration Lawyers are experts in finding pathways for clients to remain in Australia, no matter how complex their matter.
Feel free to give us a call on (07) 3166 9100 to assess how the changes to state nomination numbers affect you, and discuss the other options you might have in Australia.