Can The 408 Visa Help You During COVID-19?

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March 10, 2021

What You Need to Know About the 408 Temporary Activity Visas

The Subclass 408 Temporary Activity visa has been a lifesaving visa for thousands of people in Australia whose fate has been unknown due to an expiring visa during the evolving Covid-19 situation. This visa enables holders to remain in Australia lawfully and in many instances allowing them to get a wage through amended working rights.

At AustraliaMigrate, our visa specialists have helped many candidates with their subclass 408 visa applications since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. If you need to get advice on your 408 visa eligibility, talk to our migration agents in Sydney today or book a consultation with a registered migration agent.

Our migration specialists have put together the most frequently asked questions we have been receiving below. The information is valid at the time the article has been written.

 

Do I have to stay at the same job on a 408 visa or can I change jobs?

Those who have an approved 408 visa are allowed to move jobs while still being within the same critical occupation and position that the original visa was granted.

If you change employers, you are obligated to notify the Department of Home Affairs by submitting a ‘notification of changes in circumstance’ along with a letter of offer from the new employer. You need to ensure the job is consistent with the work you had the original visa for.

 

If I am on a Working Holiday Visa, can I work for longer than 6 months with the same employer?

If you work in a critical sector (which includes agriculture, aged care, food processing among many others), you can extend your work beyond the 6-month limit. For other sectors, you will need to seek permission from the Department of Home Affairs.

 

If I have a pending application for a 408 visa while my Working Holiday Visa is about to expire, can I keep working for my current employer?

Yes, you can because each visa has its 6-month work limit, so the bridging visa resets your 6-month limit once it comes into effect. Once approved, the subclass 408 Covid-19 visas are not affected by the 6-month work limit.

 

Is my job classified as a critical sector for the Covid-19 pandemic?

If you work in agriculture, food processing, health, disability, aged assistance or child care, your job is classified as a critical sector. Other jobs could also be considered critical – get a consultation from our visa specialists if you are not certain.

 

Am I eligible for a 408 visa?

If you are in Australia and unable to leave due to the current situation and your visa is expiring within 28 days while you cannot apply for any other visa subclass, you are eligible to apply for the 408 visa.

 

What are the working rights for 408 visa holders?

Your visa grant letter will include the conditions associated with your visa type.

 

How long does the 408 visa last?

Those who work in a critical sector may be permitted to stay in Australia for 12 months. Others will be granted a visa for several months which is included in the visa grant letter.

 

What is the application fee for the 408 visa?

There is no cost to apply for the 408 pandemic visa – it’s completely free. While there is no application fee, you may have to conduct health checks or police clearances that incur costs.

 

I am on a regional farm but have not yet completed my 3 months of specified work while also unable to leave Australia. Can I apply for a second working holiday visa or should I go for the 408 visa?

You are unable to apply for a second Working Holiday Visa since you have not completed the 3 months of specified work criteria. You can, however, apply for a 408 visa since your work is considered critical.

 

My current visa has no work rights, can I apply for the 408 pandemic visa to be able to work?

Yes, you can but only if you have evidence that you have the required skills to work in a critical sector along with a letter of employment offer from a critical sector employer.

 

Further Advice

If you are looking to add your partner once the visa is lodged or granted your partner will need to apply for a subsequent entrant 408 visa.

 

The Covid-19 situation is evolving and if you are uncertain about where you stand, contact our visa specialists today for a consultation and updated advice from our registered migration agents.

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