Temporary visa holders to receive one off Pandemic Payment
The Australian government is going to make a one-off time-limited COVID-19 Disaster Payment to assist temporary visa holders who have the right to work in Australia along with Australian citizens and Australian permanent residents. This is a significant shift as the financial help extends to overseas nationals on temporary visas.
To be eligible for the assistance the applicants must have had their hours of work and income significantly affected by the restrictions. According to the Legislative Instrument, the payment will apply when restrictions have remained in place for longer than seven days and, other than annual leave, the individuals are not recipients of other Commonwealth income support payments which would make them ineligible for this one-off payment. The rate of payment will be set at $500 per week for people who were engaged in paid employment of more than 20 hours per week, at $325 per week for people who were engaged in paid employment of fewer than 20 hours per week. To be eligible, recipients must have liquid assets of less than $10,000 during the period of the restrictions.
There is a six-months from the start of the restrictions time limit during which applicants should seek the COVID-19 Disaster Payment. For further information impacted visa holders can visit the COVID-19 Disaster Payments at the Services Australia website and on the Federal Government's GrantConnect website.
This financial help announcement is coming shortly after the Declaration made on 11 June by the Minister of Health that the COVID-19 biosecurity emergency period which was due to end on 17 June is now extended until 17 September 2021. This Declaration ensures the Australian Government has the powers to take the relevant and necessary measures to prevent and control the pandemic. Thus, we will continue to see mandatory pre-departure testing and mask-wearing on flights; restrictions on the entry of cruise vessels within Australian territory and restrictions on outbound international travel for Australians.
At Assent Migration Lawyers we understand that each situation of an overseas national in Australia or an Australian who needs to travel overseas is unique and we are here to help you navigate the ever-changing landscape of the not so free movement of people we have been experiencing in the past 18 months.