Individual travel restriction exemptions may be granted for individuals in critical sectors or with critical skills:
Individual exemptions may also be granted for:
A visa and an exemption must be obtained in advance of travel. An exemption application must be submitted online at least four weeks, but not more than three months, prior to the intended travel;
A new travel restriction exemption portal, available since 17 July, allows tracking of the progress of requests, and immediate notifications when requests are approved;
If an exemption is granted, evidence of the exemption decision must be presented at the airport; If an exemption is not granted, the travel plans should be cancelled.
Where possible, Australian embassies, high commissions, and consulates are still operating in line with local regulations and restrictions. Priority is on assisting Australians overseas.
Most offshore applications appear to be on hold, particularly for permanent visas which would entitle the person to travel to Australia under an exemption.
Temporary visa holders who are ineligible for entry into Australia under these measures will have their visa cancelled. Arrangements will be made to reinstate visas as appropriate following the lifting of these enhanced border control measures.
All international visitors are encouraged to depart if it is possible to do so. Travellers may be able to re-enter Australia if they meet entry conditions.
Australian citizens and permanent residents cannot travel overseas due to COVID19 restrictions. However, if they want to leave Australia, they may be able to apply online for an exemption to travel.
Immigration office are still operational. Applications can still be submitted online and via post, though processing of applications has slowed considerably, and some have been placed on hold for now.
Temporary Skill Shortage and subclass 457 visa holders who have been stood down, but not laid off, will maintain a valid visa and businesses will have the opportunity to extend your visa as per normal arrangements.
Businesses will be able to reduce their employees’ hours without being in breach of their visa conditions or the business being in breach of their employer obligations.
Those who have been laid off should find another employer within 60 days or make arrangements to leave Australia, where possible.
If they cannot return to their home country, they need to maintain a valid visa and follow Australia’s health advice where necessary.
A special category of the Subclass 408 Temporary Work Visa has been created to cater for temporary residents employed in critical sectors, like health, aged care or agriculture, who cannot return to their home country and have no other visa options.
Visitor visa holders should apply for a new visa before their current visa expires to maintain their lawful status. If a visitor has a “No Further Stay” condition on their visa (including 8503, 8534 or 8535) and less than two months’ validity remaining, they can request a waiver of this condition to allow them to lodge a new visa application.
Visa applicants abroad are being provided additional time to provide documents, health checks, and police certificates due to closures and restrictions of service providers.
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