COVID-19 pandemic event visa (Subclass 408)

New visa for temporary visa holders to live and work in Australia

COVID-19 pandemic event visa – what is this visa? Who can apply?

The COVID-19 pandemic event visa is a temporary visa for those who are currently in Australia and could not return to their home country due to the COVID-19 pandemic travel restrictions. You may also be eligible for this visa if you are on a Working Holiday visas such as Subclass 417 (click here to learn more) or Subclass 462 (click here to learn more) working in critical sectors or cannot apply for a further Working Holiday visa. Critical sectors include health, aged and disability care, agriculture and food processing, and childcare.

The COVID-19 pandemic event visa is one of the visas under the Temporary Activity Class GG Subclass 408 (click here to learn more).

Temporary Activity Subclass 408 Pandemic visa

There are approximately 2.17 mil temporary visa holders, more than 565,000 are students and 139,000 are temporary skilled visa holders.

Under the Temporary Activity Subclass 408 visa scheme, you need to be sponsored or endorsed. However, the COVID-19 pandemic event Subclass 408 visa does not require you to be endorsed.

This visa is only available to you if you are in Australia and you do not have any other visa options available; and your visa is about to expire in less than 28 days or your last substantive visa has expired less than 28 days ago.

If your current visa is affected by a No Further Stay condition (click here to learn more about condition 8503, 8534 and 8535), you will need to have the condition waived or removed before you can apply for the COVID-19 pandemic event visa.

You may include members of your family unit in a combined application. This is a multiple entries visa allowing you to travel to and from Australia as many times as you need while the visa is valid. This visa can only be granted if you are in Australia.

Subclass 408 Pandemic visa allows you to live and work in Australia

If you are granted the COVID-19 pandemic event visa, you are required to work in critical sectors only, including healthcare, disability and aged care, childcare and agriculture during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Department when assessing your eligibility for this visa will consider your home country circumstances.

There is no visa application fee and may be granted for 12 months.

Changes to subclass 408

If you applied on or after 21 February 2022, you can only apply if:

  • you are in Australia on or before 21 February 2022; and
  • you have a substantive visa; and
  • you are working or intending to work in Australia; or
  • you are in Australia on or before 21 February 2022; and
  • you have a substantive visa that allows you to work or you have a job offer from the Commonwealth funded aged care service.

If the above apply to you, you must either be working or intending to work in agriculture, food processing, health care, aged care, disability care, child care, and tourism and hospitality.

Australian migration law is complex and difficult to understand, contact our immigration lawyer for a consultation (fee applies) to help you decide if you can apply for the COVID-19 pandemic event visa or click to learn more about other visas.

COVID-19 pandemic event visa

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This article is not intended to be or taken as migration legal advice. The author of this article disclaims any liability for any action or omission on the information provided or not provided in this article. You should always consult an immigration lawyer or a registered migration agent to form an informed opinion on your immigration matter.

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