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Temporary Graduate Visa (485) – All you need to know

Temporary Graduate Visa

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You’ve worked hard and completed your studies in Australia – what’s next?

The Temporary Graduate Visa (subclass 485) enables you to stay in Australia to live, study or work after you graduate. This visa has two streams: Graduate Work stream and Post-Study Work stream. The length of this visa can be between two to four years long, depending on which stream you apply for.

Who is the Temporary Graduate Visa for?

The Temporary Graduate Visa is a great option for international students who would like to stay in Australia after completing their studies. It can also be a stepping stone to permanent residency, either through General Skilled Migration or Employer Sponsorship.

Which stream should I apply for?

The stream you can apply for depends on what course you completed.

Graduate Work Stream

This stream is for students who have recently completed at least a Diploma course with skills and qualifications that are relevant to specific occupations that Australia needs.

Post-Study Work Stream

This stream is for students who have recently graduated with a degree (at least Bachelor or above) from an Australian institution. The course does not need to be relevant to a specific occupation as long as the qualification is at least a Bachelor degree.

How long is the duration of the Temporary Graduate Visa?

  • Graduate Work Stream. The duration of this visa when granted is 1.5 years.
  • Post-Study Work Stream. The duration will depend on which qualification you completed. Also, it will depend on whether you have completed your study in a regional area in Australia.
    • If you studied in major cities such as Melbourne, Sydney or Brisbane, the duration will be:
      • Bachelor/Bachelor with Honours – 2 years
      • Masters by Coursework or Masters (Extended) – 2 years
      • Masters by Research – 3 years
      • Doctorate – 4 years
    • If you studied in a regional city or area, you may be eligible for a second Temporary Graduate Visa which will allow you to stay for 1-2 more years in addition to the above.
      Regional areas include Perth, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Lake Macquarie, Illawarra, Geelong, Newcastle, Wollongong, Adelaide, Hobart and Canberra.

Am I eligible for the Temporary Graduate Visa?

While the eligibility criteria depends on the stream you are applying for, there are some common criteria for both streams:

Minimum eligibility criteria

  • Age: The main applicant must be under 50 at the date of lodgement.
  • English: The main applicant must demonstrate their English language ability, either through holding certain types of passport or by undertaking an English test. Also, evidence of threshold English must be provided at date of lodgement
  • Adequate Health Insurance. Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) is acceptable health insurance if you are still on a student visa when you submit or send your application for a subclass 485 visa. However, you will need to show that you have arranged for Overseas Visitor Health Cover (OVHC) for when your 485 visa is granted. To learn more or to get a quote, send us a message!
  • Hold an eligible visa: The main applicant is a holder of a current student visa, or held a student visa within the past six months.*
  • Meet the Australian Study Requirement. You will meet this criteria if you have completed at least one degree, diploma or trade qualification and:
    • You have successfully completed all course requirements
    • The course was in English
    • Your course had at least two academic years (92 weeks) of study
    • You were physically in Australia for at least 16 calendar months to complete the study
    • The course was completed within the last 6 months*
    • You held an Australian study visa that allowed you to study

To meet the 2 academic year component of the Australian study requirement, you may combine courses in some circumstances.

Further to the above, below are the additional criteria specific to each stream:

Graduate Work Stream – additional criteria

  • Have skills and qualifications that Australia needs. You will need to:
    • Nominate an occupation on the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) when you apply. Remember that after you apply, you cannot change the occupation you nominate.
    • Complete a degree, diploma or trade qualification closely related to that occupation, AND
    • Pass a skills assessment test conducted by a relevant assessing authority. The relevant authority for your occupation can be found in the list of eligible skilled occupations. You would need to lodge a skills assessment prior to applying for the 485 visa, but the assessment does not need to be completed at lodgement.

Post-Study Work Stream – additional criteria

  • Hold and eligible qualification. You will meet this criteria if you have completed a degree which can be a:
    • Bachelor degree
    • Bachelor (honours) degree
    • Masters by coursework or Masters (extended) degree
    • Masters by research degree
    • Doctoral degree

If you have specific questions about your eligibility, send us a message!

*Important Update

Due to COVID-19, the Department of Immigration has relaxed certain eligibility requirements for students affected by associated travel restrictions:

  • If you are undertaking online study outside Australia, you will be able to count this towards the Australian Study Requirement if you’re an existing or new student visa holder.
  • It will be possible to be granted the visa even if you are outside Australia.⁣
  • Instead of 6 months, you will have 1 year to apply for this visa after you complete your course.⁣
  • You will have 1 year to apply for this visa after your student visa has expired.
  • You will be allowed extra time to provide English language results if you are unable to take a test in your home country due to COVID-19.

How much will it cost to apply for the Temporary Graduate Visa?

The visa application fee for the Temporary Graduate Visa (subclass 485) costs AU$1,650 for the main applicant, $825 for spouse or partner and $415 for children under 18.

Additional costs include but are not limited to:

  • Adequate Health Cover. The price of your insurance will depend on the cover you choose. Generally, prices for (Overseas Visitors Health Cover) OVHC start from $71/month.
  • Cost of English Test, if applicable. The specific cost of each test varies by location, but in Australia; The cost for TOEFL is $300. For the PTE is $330. And IELTS is $330.
  • Cost of Skills Assessment Test (for graduate work stream only). The cost of Skills Assessment Test varies by assessing authority. Please check with your relevant authority for prices.

Can I work full time with this visa?

Yes! With the Temporary Graduate Visa, you will have full time work rights for the duration of your visa. However, this visa allows you to live, work, and study in Australia temporarily. So, if you want to extend your stay in Australia after your visa expires, you will need to apply for a new visa for a different subclass.

I currently hold a 485 visa. Can I extend my stay in Australia by renewing this visa?

If you graduated and lived in major cities such as Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane, you can’t stay in Australia longer by extending this visa.

However, you might be eligible for other skilled work visas. Check out the government’s visa finder to find out options for work.

If you graduated from a regional institution and maintained ongoing residence in a regional area for at least two years while holding your first Temporary Graduate visa, then you may be eligible for a second Temporary Graduate Visa.

Although, the second Temporary Graduate visa will require ongoing residence in a regional area.

Regional areas include Perth, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Lake Macquarie, Illawarra, Geelong, Newcastle, Wollongong, Adelaide, Hobart and Canberra.

I already held a 485 visa before. Can I apply for this visa again?

You will only be eligible for a second Temporary Graduate Visa if you graduated in a regional area and maintained ongoing residence in a regional area during your first Temporary Graduate visa.

You must have resided in a regional area for at least two years immediately before applying for the second 485 Visa.

How do I apply for the 485 visa?

First Temporary Graduate Visa

You can apply for the Temporary Graduate Visa online visa the Department of Home Affairs’ portal. Please make sure that all your documents and payment are ready so you can ensure that your application is valid!

Second Temporary Graduate Visa

Applications for the Second Temporary Graduate Visa can be made online from 21 January 2021. The cost for the second 485 Visa is AU$650 for the main applicant, $325 for spouse or partner and $165 for children under 18.

I need help with my application

Open Borders was born with the goal of providing you the information you need for a smooth visa application process. Whether you prefer to take care of your own application and just need some guidance or if you need complete migration assistance, our team of experts is here to help!

So feel free to contact us through the chat box on the right!

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