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Changes announced for the Temporary Activity Visas for Australia

Changes announced for the Temporary Activity Visas for Australia

A new Temporary Activity Visa Framework for Australia will commence on 19 November 2016. With effect from 19 November 2016 there will only be four temporary activity visas, namely:

- Subclass 400 Temporary Work (Short Stay Specialist)

- Subclass 403 Temporary Work (International Relations)

- Subclass 407 Training

- Subclass 408 Temporary Activity

The new framework will also remove the following visa subclasses:

- Subclass 401 Temporary Work (Long Stay Activity)

- Subclass 402 Training and Research

- Subclass 416 Special Program

- Subclass 420 Temporary Work (Entertainment)

- Subclass 488 Superyacht Crew

The streamlining of the temporary activity visa programme is part of the Australian Government’s plan to improve the efficiency of processing visas.

While the regulations have not been officially released by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP), the following information has been provided in briefings:

- Visa application charge (VAC) for all four subclasses will be A$ 275.00

- All applications should be lodged online. Paper applications are only available for the Subclass 403 visa

Further descriptions about the four visas are available from the DIBP website:

Subclass 400 Temporary Work (Short Stay Specialist) visa

This visa would be for people who want to come to Australia on a temporary basis to:

  • undertake short-term, highly specialised, non-ongoing work
  • in limited circumstances, participate in an activity or work relating to Australia’s interests.

There is no need for sponsorship for this visa. The visa will be granted for a maximum of 3 months stay.

Subclass 403 Temporary Work (International Relations) visa

This visa would be for people who want to come to Australia on a temporary basis:

  • in relation to a bilateral agreement
  • to represent a foreign government or to teach a foreign language in an Australian school
  • to undertake full-time domestic work for a diplomat
  • as a person with statutory privileges and immunities
  • to participate in the Seasonal Worker Programme.

Subclass 407 Training visa

This visa would be for people who want to come to Australia on a temporary basis to undertake occupational training or participate in classroom based professional development activities.

The subclass 407 Training visa involves Sponsorship, Nomination and Visa Application. The training provider will be the sponsor of the occupational trainees. Applicants will need to demonstrate functional English and the maximum stay for this visa is 24 months.

PhD students, university researchers and academics will now apply under the subclass 408 Temporary Activity visa.

Subclass 408 Temporary Activity visa

This visa would be for people who want to come to Australia on a temporary basis to:

  • work in the entertainment industry
  • participate in a non-ongoing cultural or social activities at the invitation of an Australian organisation
  • observe or participate as an academic in a research project
  • undertake full-time religious work
  • participate in a special programme to enhance international relations and cultural exchange
  • participate in high-level sports (including training)
  • work in a skilled position under a staff exchange arrangement
  • participate in an Australian government endorsed event
  • work as a superyacht crew member
  • undertake full-time domestic work in the household of certain senior foreign executives.

Sponsorship for this visa is required if the application is lodged onshore. Offshore applications will also require sponsorship if the stay required is longer than 3 months. Offshore applications applying for stay periods lesser than 3 months will not require sponsorship. Nomination applications are not necessary for this visa.

Important Note:

Temporary activity visa applications lodged before 19 November 2016 will be processed under current legislation. If a visa application is made on or after 19 November 2016, you will be unable to link the visa application to a previously approved nomination. In other words you will need to resubmit a nomination before you can submit the visa application.


Comments by Chris Johnston – Principal Lawyer and Registered Migration Agent at Work Visa Lawyers

The new temporary activity visa framework is a step in the right direction to streamline visa applications and allow visa applications to be processed faster. However it is worth noting that when the Student visa programme underwent a similar streamlining process the transition was less than smooth for many applicants. There were reported delays that many student visa applications took longer than expected, and were processed slower compared to the previous programme. Hopefully the transition for the temporary activity visas will be smoother this time around.

This information is accurate on 14 October 2016

Do you need help with an Australian visa application?

At Work Visa Lawyers we are experienced in assisting applicants in all matters relating to Australian visa applications. Our areas of expertise include Skilled Migration visas, Business Skills Migration visas, Employer Sponsored Work Visas, Partner and other Family Migration visas as well as the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) Review, Judicial Review and Ministerial Intervention.

If you require further information regarding your Australia visa options you can contact us through:

(08) 8351 9956 or +61 8 8351 9956

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