Considering the ongoing situation, the Australian Government has defined the current status of temporary visa holders, where a series of aids have also been proposed in order to counter the economic difficulties they may be experiencing. Here are the Australian Government announcements for temporary visa holders:
Carla Wilshire, Executive Director of the Australian Migration Council, stated that in the face of the COVID-19 situation, they will begin to safeguard all visa categories:
“There is a need to grant an extension of 6 to 12 months in all categories of temporary visas to ensure that people have a feeling of security. People should not worry about whether they will become illegal. There should also be emergency support and basic income payments available to the many temporary visa holders who will lose their livelihoods ”
It has also been considered to provide temporary access to Medicare for people with temporary visas who don’t currently have it since health insurance often has a limited duration and some policies don’t cover pandemics.
The last thing Australia needs is for desperate and homeless temporary migrants to roam the community and spread the virus.
The Immigration Minister also announced that sponsorship visa holders working in Australia that:
- Have lost their jobs.
- Have had a reduction in their working hours.
- Have been temporarily suspended.
They will not violate the conditions of their visa and may apply for permanent residence.
It’s important to be clear about the visa expiration dates:
If your visa expires and you have not returned to work, you will still have to apply for another visa and if you cannot return to work and obtain the support of your employer, you will not be able to extend your sponsorship work visa or apply for a permanent employer visa.
In this case, you can contact us to help you find the best pathway for you.
Although this measure is a great relief it does not take away the fact that you need to have an income to survive, this is why sponsorship visa holders will now be able to have early access to their Superannuation and withdraw up to $10,000.00 AUD before the end of the financial year (30 of June 2020).
Senior care centers and supermarkets have been licensed by the Government to allow international students to extend their working hours until May 1st, 2020.
The other announced measure is that students who have been in Australia for more than 12 months and are financially affected, will be able to withdraw their Superannuation (pension system that is managed in Australia). This also applies to Graduate 485 visa holders.
To access the Superannuation:
- You must submit an application to register your interest through the link: https://my.gov.au
- This access will be available starting on April 20th, 2020.
- When you register, the ATO will contact you via email or SMS to inform you when applications will be open.
Work and Holiday Visa
If you have this visa and work in critical sectors such as:
- The care of elderly and disabled people.
- Agriculture / farming.
- Food processing.
You will be able to work more than six months with the same employer and you will continue to be eligible for an additional visa, thus you will continue to perform your job.
You just read: “Announcements from the Australian government for temporary visa holders”, it is important that you keep an eye on our communication channels so that you are aware of any updates that may be presented in the face of this situation, rest assured that Visado will be there to help you.
Information taken from: Australian Government Department of Home Affair (2020). Australia Recovered from: https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/