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Australian borders open but only for some overseas nationals

We are very excited with the announcement of the Australian government that the borders are about to open. We are on track with the vaccination rate to reach 80% of the eligible population. Just before the festive season there is no shortage of people who would like to travel from and to Australia. Australian citizens and permanent residents have been enjoying their freedom for weeks already, but now we are open for some overseas nationals on temporary visas.


Who can travel?


First and foremost the privilege of open borders is restricted to those who are fully vaccinated with one of the TGA recognised vaccines and of course present your International COVID-19 Vaccination Certificate which you can obtain in Australia or the equivalent of it which you can obtain overseas. The Department of Home Affairs has a helpful guide for those living overseas.


The winners are: the Working Holiday cohort of applicants who could finally make an entry into Australia to activate their twelve months stay; the international students and the temporary graduate visa holders who have been stuck outside Australia since March 2020 who still hold a valid visa; the employer nominated visa cohort; the Refugee and Humanitarian visa holders who are waiting to travel to Australia scattered at various compromised circumstances and last but not least the family categories - parent and prospective partner visa holders.


The full list of eligible visas can be found here


Who cannot travel?


Those who miss out are the nearly 100,000 bridging visa holders who are residing in Australia with pending appeals at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal or on judicial review before the Federal Court. Many of these overseas nationals have been residing in Australia for years on bridging visas that were never meant to provide for a long term stay, and many have pathways to alternative visas which they cannot lodge while in Australia because they had a visa refusal or cancellation since their last entry into Australia.


Australia is not yet open for people who wish to travel here for a holiday or to visit extended family or friends.


These category of travellers will have to wait a little longer for a solution.


Contact Assent Migration Lawyers to help you navigate the complex, ever changing landscape of Australian visas.

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