Updated: Feb 26, 2021
Amendments to the Subclass 485 – Temporary Graduate visa, which allows overseas students to stay in Australia for 1.5 years to 6 years after they complete studies in Australia, has been effective since 20 January 2021.
Before the amendments, assume one satisfies all the English proficiency, study criteria and so on, anyone may apply for the subclass 485 visa as long as the applicant has never been granted a subclass 485 visa as the main applicant, i.e. a spouse of subclass 485 main visa holder might study after the 485 visa expires on a student visa and apply for another 485 visa. Thousands of international students utilise this operation of law to achieve their migration outcome.
Every road has an end, so as this mechanism has come to an end after the legislation amendments come into play.
The new provisions require a main applicant of the subclass 485 visa:
(1) has not previously held a Subclass 485 (Temporary Graduate) visa in the Graduate Work stream; and
(2) has not previously held a Subclass 485 (Temporary Graduate) visa in the Post‑Study Work stream, unless the applicants are applying for the subclass 485 visa extension because they have lived and studied in the designated regional area; and
(3) has not previously held two Subclass 485 (Temporary Graduate) visas in the Post‑Study Work stream.
The interpretation of these three added provisions will be – one will not be able to obtain a subclass 485 visa as a main applicant if he or she has ever held a subclass 485 visa, no matter he or she has held such visa as the main applicant or a dependent, except he or she studied in the designated regional area and has lived in the designated regional area for the entire duration of the first subclass 485 visa. Nevertheless, definitely, no one will be eligible for the third 485 visa as a main applicant.
This policy will affect those who apply for the visa on or after 20 January 2021. For those who submitted a subclass 485 visa application on or before 19 January 2021, you will be not affected by the new provisions.
Talk to us if you have any concern on any Australian visas. Good Luck!