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New changes to COVID-19 Pandemic event visa (Subclass 408) 

Highlights:

  1. No application charge: Applicants are not required to pay the visa application charge.
  2. 408 visa holders can work in any sector of the Australian economy for a period of 6 or 12 months.
(Picture from Australian Government)

Presently, the COVID-19 Pandemic Event visa is available with no Visa Application Charge for 12 months for any person working in, or with an offer to work in agriculture, food processing, health care, aged care, disability care, child care, and tourism and hospitality.

The new arrangements will only be available for Pandemic Event visa applications made on or after 21 February 2022 by:

  • Temporary visa holders who were in Australia prior to 21 February 2022; as well as
  • Temporary visa holders who arrive in Australia after 21 February 2022 and have work rights or a job offer from a Commonwealth funded aged care service at time of application.

Online Visa Application Guide 

The Temporary Activity (subclass 408) Visa must be applied for electronically using the online visa application form. 

Eligibility:

  • Applicants are currently in Australia  
  • Applicants are unable to return home due to COVID-19 travel restrictions  
  • Applicants currently hold a valid visa that will cease in 28 days or less or their visa ceased less than 28 days ago. 
  • Applicants wish to remain in Australia to work in critical sectors including healthcare, disability and aged care, childcare and agriculture during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Important Notice!

Applications should only be lodged if the applicant’s current visa expires in 28 days or less, but can also be lodged if their visa has expired less than 28 days ago. 

Temporary visa holders working in, or intending to work in, any sector of the Australian economy including Commonwealth funded aged care will be able to apply for the Pandemic Event visa up to 90 days before their existing visa expires and then remain in Australia for up to 12 additional months if working or intending to work in a key sector (including agriculture, food processing, health care, aged care, disability care, child care, and tourism and hospitality) or 6 months if working or intending to work in any other sector.

More information on visa details can be found at https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/getting-a-visa/visa-listing/temporary-activity-408/australian-government-endorsed-events-covid-19

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