January 3, 2024

Australia’s Changes to Working Holiday Makers Visa Conditions

Changes to Working Holiday Makers Visa Conditions

THE EXTENSION OF WORK RIGHTS BEYOND THE SIX-MONTH LIMITATION FOR WORKING HOLIDAY MAKERS

The Australian Department of Home Affairs has officially confirmed changes to the policy arrangements around condition 8547.

Effective 1 January 2024, Working Holiday Makers will need to request an extension beyond the standard six-month limitation, unless they meet the exemptions in place. 

The new process requires individuals to take the responsibility and actively request an extension themselves if they wish to continue working in Australia beyond the initial six months and have the limitation removed.

However, the specific details regarding these exemptions are yet to be fully outlined, and the Department of Home Affairs has promised further information following an upcoming review. This leaves room for anticipation as we await more comprehensive updates, set to be released in early 2024.

WORKING HOLIDAY EXTENSION: NEW RULES AND TEMPORARY EXEMPTIONS

As of 1 January 2024, the Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, and Multicultural Affairs has decided on an extension to the exemption process for visa condition 8547.

TEMPORARY EXEMPTIONS EXPLAINED

Until the Australian Government has further discussions regarding the Working Holiday Makers reform, Working Holiday Makers can extend their employment with the same employer beyond 6 months without seeking permission only if the following circumstances apply:

  1. Working in different locations: Working Holiday Makers can extend their employment if they work in various locations, as long as the duration of employment in any single location does not exceed 6 months.
  2. Employment in plant and animal cultivation: Individuals engaged in plant and animal cultivation activities in Australia are eligible for an extension.
  3. Specific industries: Exemptions apply to certain industries, including aged care and disability services, fishing and pearling, tree farming and felling, construction, and mining. However, these exemptions are limited to Northern Australia.
  4. Natural disaster recovery work: Those involved in natural disaster recovery work, starting from 17 February 2020, are eligible for an extension.
  5. Sanctioned critical sectors: Workers in critical sectors such as agriculture, food processing, health, aged and disability care, childcare (from 4 April 2020), and tourism and hospitality (from 8 May 2020) can extend their employment without seeking additional permission.

 

HOW TO APPLY FOR CONDITION 8547 EXTENSIONS

 How to apply for Condition 8547 extensions

In a recent update by the Department of Home Affairs, changes to the Working Holiday program have been announced, specifically regarding the extension of work rights beyond the standard six-month limitation.

While certain exemptions exist, those not covered by these exceptions are required to seek permission for extended employment with one employer. This article outlines the guidelines and procedures for Working Holiday Makers who fall outside the specified exemptions.

A new web form for extension applications is anticipated to be operational starting 22 December 2023. During this time, the Home Affairs Department will process applications that adhere to the guidelines below:

Alternatively, applicants can send an email to Working.Holiday@homeaffairs.gov.au, clearly stating:

  • commencement date of employment and the anticipated end date of the six-month period.
  • comprehensive details justifying the need for an extension beyond six months.
  • intended duration for continuing employment with the employer.
  • include supporting documentation from the employer, such as a one-page letter on company letterhead outlining exceptional circumstances.

For individuals who have already submitted requests for approval to work beyond six months with the same employer, employment can continue until a written outcome is received.

Stay informed as we anticipate further announcements in 2024 that will provide additional insights into broader changes expected in the Working Holiday program. We will keep you updated on any developments that may impact your experience as a Working Holiday Maker in Australia.

For personalised assistance and advice on your specific situation, book a consultation with our experienced Immigration Lawyers and Registered Migration Agents today. Your journey to a seamless experience in Australia begins with guidance from our visa specialists!

 

 

July 20, 2023

7 changes to Australia’s Immigration effective 1 July 2023

Australia Immigration Program 2023-2024

1. Higher Income Threshold for Skilled Migration

The Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold (TSMIT) has increased from $53,900 to $70,000 per year. In particular, this is relevant for Employer Sponsored Visas, e.g. 482 TSS and DAMA Visa.

2. Work & Holiday Visa Makers

Papua New Guinea (PNG) has officially joined the ranks of countries participating in the Working Holiday Maker (WHM) Program.

The age eligibility for UK citizens applying for Subclass 417 has been extended. The previous age range of 18-30 will now include individuals up to 35 years old and will have the opportunity to stay in Australia for a total of 3 years.

3. Increase in Visa Application Charges

In accordance with the projected Consumer Price Index (CPI) for the 2023-24 period, adjustments have been made to the Visa Application Charges (VACs). Below is the summary of several highly sought-after visa subclasses:

Visa Application Charges

4. Work Restrictions for all Student Visa Holders

Work limitations for all Student Visa holders have been reinstated reducing work hours to 48 hours per fortnight.

Student visa holders working in the Aged Care sector in Australia can continue to work unlimited hours until 31 December 2023.

5. New Zealand Citizens can apply directly for Australian Citizenship

New Zealand citizens who hold a Special Category (subclass 444) visa and entered Australia after 26th February 2001 and have resided in Australia for a minimum of four years, will be eligible to apply directly for Australian Citizenship. No need to get PR before. This is saving  money and time!

6. Extend your stay in Australia with the 485 Visa Extension program

International students who are successfully completing qualifying degrees in fields such as science, medicine, healthcare, engineering, and technology have the opportunity to extend their post-study stay in Australia.

The duration of this extended stay will be as follows:

  • Bachelor degrees will increase from two years to four years.
  • Master degrees will increase from three years to five years.
  • Doctoral degrees will increase from four years to six years.

There are NO additional visa application charges! Plus, here’s the best part: You don’t need an English test! 

7. Occupation & Skills Assessment – Graduate Work Stream

Individuals applying for the Graduate Work Stream visa are required to meet certain criteria. These include holding a qualification that is pertinent to an occupation listed on the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) and undergoing a skills assessment in the nominated occupation. BOOK A CONSULTATION TODAY

 

SKILLED VISA PROGRAM

The Australian Government has allocated 30,375 visa positions for the Skilled Independent program in the 2023-24 period. This substantial allocation aligns with the government’s proactive approach to meeting the increasing demands and attracting highly skilled individuals.

Notably, in the preceding fiscal year, more than 66,000 invitations were given for the Subclass 189 visa,  demonstrating the Government’s commitment to prioritising and promoting skilled migration.

These initiatives provide many opportunities for professionals to make meaningful contributions towards the progress and advancement of Australia.

 Interested? Schedule an appointment today! We are Immigration Lawyers and Registered Migration Agents. We have the knowledge, experience and skills to provide you with information on all Australian visa types and immigration pathways. Book your consultation here

Auspire Immigration Australia. Immigration Lawyer Australia. Registered Migration Agent Australia. Education Agent Australia.

 

 

January 20, 2022

Australia is suffering from significant workforce shortages in all industries. The Australian Government announced that International Students allowed extra hours in all sectors of the economy. This takes effect immediately for all ongoing students as well as new student arrivals. This means that international students are allowed to work more than 40 hours a fortnight in any sector of the economy. This also includes secondary applicants, e.g. partners.

New student visa arrivals are allowed to commence a job prior to course commencement. This means that international students and their dependents can work before their course commences and work more than 40 hours a fortnight in any sector of the economy. 

This is a temporary arrangement and will be reviewed by the Australian Government in April 2022.

Good news also for Working Holiday Visa holders who will have no limit on the time they can work for the same employer. This is effective immediately until the end of 2022.

Furthermore, Student Visa holders may be eligible for a visa application charge (VAC) refund if they travel to Australia between 19 January to 19 March 2022. Further details on the refund policy are yet to be announced but it looks like it will only apply to applicants who applied whilst offshore.

Any Working Holiday Maker visa holder who is currently offshore and travels to Australia between 19 January and 19 April 2022 will be eligible for a refund of their visa application charge.

The current VAC for a Student visa is AUD630 and for a Working Holiday Maker it is AUD495. The VAC refund includes secondary visa holders, e.g. partners and children.

Want more information on the Student Visa? Click here

Want more information on the Working Holiday Visa? Click here

Looking for work? We publish jobs and sponsorship opportunities around Australia here

Want our help with the visa application process? We are immigration lawyers, migration + education agents. Book your strategy & advice call here

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