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  • Writer's pictureDessie

Pandemic Event visa subclass 408 closure

Updated: Jan 9

The Pandemic Event (subclass 408) visa was created by the Australian Government in response to the borders closures in 2020 and it allowed overseas national to remain in Australia for further 12 months and contribute to the Australian economy.

The Government announced it will stop processing the Pandemic Event visa on 1 July 2023. However, the program remained open and applications continued being processed and Pandemic Event (subclass 408) visas continued to be granted.

Today in a joint medial release the Hon Clare O'Neil and the Hon Andrew Gile announced that the Pandemic Event (subclass 408) visa will close completely in February 2024.

However, from 2 September 2023 only new applicants who are in Australia as the holders of Pandemic Event visa will be eligible to apply for the Pandemic Event (subclass 408) visa.

If you are the holder of an Australian visa with work rights which expires prior to 1 December 2023 you have to lodge your application before 2 September 2023.

If you are the holder of a Pandemic Event (subclass 408) visa and your visa expires any time prior to April 2024 you are likely to be eligible for a renewal of your visa, assuming you meet all the relevant criteria for the approval as long as you lodge the renewal prior to February 2024.

Under the new Legislative Instrument which will commences on 2 September 2023 the applicants will:

  • pay $405 visa application fee plus subsequent temporary visa surcharge of $700 per applicant included in the application whereas previously it was free of charge;

  • have to already be the holder of a Pandemic Event visa whereas previously it was available to any temporary visa holder in Australia;

  • be able to lodge only with in 28 days or less of the expiry date of their visa  whereas previously it could have been lodged within 90 days of visa expiry as long the visa has giving work rights;

  • be considered for up to 6 months stay whereas previously it was granted for 12 months.

If your Pandemic Event (subclass 408) visa expires beyond 28 February 2024, your visa will remain valid for the duration of stay you were granted at time of approval. You need to seek alternative visa pathways to remain in Australia prior to the expiry of your Pandemic Event (subclass 408) visa.

Contact Assent Migration Lawyers for assistance with your visa pathways to remain in Australia.

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