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COVID-19 visa concessions
From 19 September 2020, a number of concessions will be available for certain visa holders impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
COVID-19 concessions are to help you continue on your visa pathway if you have been disadvantaged by COVID-19 border closures, business restrictions or the economic downturn.
If you hold, or held, a temporary or provisional visa listed below during the COVID-19 concession period you may be eligible for a COVID-19 concession.
The COVID-19 concession period commences from 1 February 2020 and is an interim arrangement.
Check back here for updates about when the concession period will end.
See details on COVID-19 concessions available for:
- Skilled Regional (Subclass 887) visa
- Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent)(Subclass 888) visa
- Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional)(Subclass 188) visa
- Safe Haven Enterprise (Subclass 790) visa
- Temporary Graduate (Subclass 485) visa
Temporary concession for certain Family visa applicants affected by COVID-19 travel restrictions
Partner and Child visas
Some categories of visas require applicants to be outside of Australia at the time the visa is granted. The Department is aware that COVID-19 travel restrictions are affecting visa applicants, particularly applicants for family visas who have come to Australia.
The Department is taking disruptions arising from the pandemic into account when considering visa applications. Visa applicants are being given additional time to complete the necessary requirements, including any current requirement to be offshore at time of visa grant.
If you have applied for a Partner or Child visa outside Australia but are in Australia during the COVID-19 concession period, you can be granted a visa in Australia if you meet all other visa criteria.
- Visa applicants who made their visa application outside Australia before the end of the COVID-19 concession period, but have been in Australia during that period, will be able to have their visa granted in Australia if all the other requirements for the visa are met.
- Any applicant who is outside Australia and who meets the usual visa grant requirements will be able to be granted the visa outside Australia (as per the current process).
The COVID-19 concession period started on 1 February 2020 and is a temporary arrangement. Check back here for updates about when the concession period will end.
Applicants who come to Australia after the end of the COVID-19 concession period will not be able to be granted their visa while they are in Australia.
Visas included in this concession are:
- Child (subclass 101) visa
- Adoption (subclass 102) visa
- Dependent Child (subclass 445) visa
- Prospective Marriage (subclass 300) visa
- Partner (subclass 309) visa.
Parent visa applications lodged outside Australia
If you have applied for one of the Parent visas listed below outside Australia and you are in Australia on 24 March 2021, your visa can be granted in Australia if you meet all other visa criteria during the COVID-19 concession period.
- Parent (subclass 103) visa
- Contributory Parent (subclass 173) visa
- Contributory Parent (subclass 143) visa
Any applicant for these visas who is outside Australia and who meets the usual visa grant requirements will be able to be granted the visa outside Australia (as per the current process).
Parent visa applications lodged in Australia
If you have applied for one of the Parent visas listed below in Australia, and you are outside Australia on 24 March 2021, your visa can be granted while you are outside Australia if you meet all other visa criteria during the COVID-19 concession period.
- Aged Parent (subclass 804) visa
- Contributory Aged Parent (subclass 864) visa
Any applicant for these visas who is in Australia and who meets the usual visa grant requirements will be able to be granted the visa in Australia (as per the current process).
Temporary concessions for Parent visa applicants will apply during the COVID-19 concession period. The COVID-19 concession period started on 1 February 2020. It is a temporary arrangement. Check back here for updates about when the concession period will end.
These amendments will not impact current processing timeframes for Parent visa applications. For further information, see Parent visa queue release dates and processing times.
Bridging visas for Parent and Contributory Parent visa applicants
You may be eligible for the grant of a bridging visa in association with your Parent (Subclass 103), Contributory Parent (Subclass 143) or Contributory Parent (Temporary) (Subclass 173) visa application during the period in which the COVID-19 concessions are in place, if all of these criteria are met:
- you lodged your Parent or Contributory Parent visa application before 24 March 2021
- the visa application was lodged in Australia
- you were in Australia on 24 March 2021
- the visa application has not been finalised.
The bridging visa subclass you may be eligible for depends on your circumstances at the time your Parent or Contributory Parent visa application was made.
If you did not hold a substantive visa at the time you made your visa application, you will not be eligible for a BVA. You may be able to satisfy the requirements for a Bridging visa E - BVE - (Subclass 050).
If you lodged a paper application for a Parent or Contributory Parent visa at an office outside Australia, you will not meet the criteria for the grant of a bridging visa in association with your visa application.
If you wish to apply for a bridging visa, post a completed Form 1005 to the WA Parent Visa Centre . Do not email the completed form. Any Form 1005 received by email will be an invalid application and cannot be considered.
Sponsored Parent (Temporary) (subclass 870) visas
If you held a Sponsored Parent (Temporary) (subclass 870) visa (SPTV) and were outside Australia on 1 July 2021, your visa period has been automatically extended by 18 months. This concession aims to assist SPTV holders who could not spend the full 3 or 5 years on their visa in Australia due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.
If your visa was extended under this concession, the additional 18 months will not count toward your cumulative 10 year maximum stay period.
The Department will notify eligible visa holders in writing by the end of August 2021.
Sponsorship obligations for SPTV Sponsors have also been extended for the same 18 month period.
You can use VEVO to check your visa details and conditions.
The Government is continually reviewing arrangements for visas during the pandemic. This page will be regularly updated as adjustments are made.