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Navigating Changes: The End of the COVID-19 Concession Period

Updated: Nov 28, 2023

As of November 25, 2023, a crucial update in migration policies, specifically the Migration (Ending the COVID-19 Concession Period) (LIN23/063) Specification 2023, is set to reshape the landscape of visa applications.

Let's break down the key aspects for a clearer understanding:

The Concession Period Overview

Commencing on February 1, 2020, and concluding on November 25, 2023, the COVID-19 concession period was designed to offer certain privileges to visa applicants. Now, with the new specification, it's essential to grasp how these changes might impact your visa journey.

COVID-19 Concession Period: February 1, 2020 - November 25, 2023

Skilled Regional Visa subclass 887

For those eyeing the subclass 887 visa, temporary concessions have been in play for holders of eligible skilled provisional visas. During the COVID-19 concession period, applicants could apply from inside or outside Australia, with shorter employment and regional residence requirements.

However, to access the employment requirement concession, you must have held an eligible skilled provisional visa during the concession period and submit a valid application within three months of February 26, 2024.

The conclusion of the concession period marks the end of any further concessions for the subclass 887 visa. Post-November 25, 2023, eligible skilled provisional visa holders applying for this visa must be in Australia (excluding immigration clearance).

Family Visas

COVID-19 concessions brought relief by lifting location restrictions for certain Family program visa applicants. Those who applied for certain Partner and Child visas before November 26, 2023, and were in Australia during the concession period will continue to be eligible for visa grants in Australia (meeting all other criteria) after the concession period concludes.

However, these concessions do not extend to Partner and Child applicants who were not in Australia during the COVID-19 concession period.

For certain Parent visa applicants, the COVID-19 concessions were applicable only during the specific period, from February 1, 2020, to November 25, 2023.

Business Innovation and Investment Program (BIIP) Visas

Entrepreneurs participating in the BIIP received COVID-19 concessions for the provisional subclass 188 visa (Business Innovation Extension stream) and the permanent subclass 888 visa under all streams.

Eligible BIIP applicants can exercise these concessions for three months after the end of the concession period, with applications due before Monday, February 26, 2024.

Temporary Graduate Visa (TGV)

A significant change comes into play for the Temporary Graduate visa program from November 25, 2023.

All applications for any TGV stream must be lodged in Australia. However, there's a silver lining – subsequent entrant applications can still be lodged both in and outside of Australia. The ability to grant applications to individuals either in or outside of Australia (excluding immigration clearance) will persist.

In conclusion, these changes mark a significant shift in visa application procedures. If you have any questions or concerns about how these modifications might affect your specific case, feel free to reach out.

Our team is here to guide you through these changes and ensure a smooth transition in your visa journey.

Contact us

Should you have any inquiries related to Australian studies, visas, or migration law, please do not hesitate to reach out to us at either MEA Group or Integro Lawyers. We're here to provide expert guidance and support on your journey through the Australian education and immigration landscape. Your questions and concerns are our priority, and we're ready to assist you every step of the way.

Migration (Ending the COVID-19 Concession Period) (LIN23-063) Specification 2023
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