COVID Concessions Extended to Additional Visa Subclasses


1. Offshore Partner and other visas do not require the visa applicant to be outside Australia at time of visa grant, from 27th February 2021:

  • Partner (s309) visa
  • Prospective Marriage (s300) visa
  • Child (s101) visa
  • Adoption (s102) visa
  • Dependent Child (s445) visa

From 24th March 2021 this also applies to the following visas:

  • Contributory Parent (s173) visa
  • Contributory Parent (s143) visa
  • Parent (s103) visa


2. Subclass 485 Offshore lodgement and grant permitted:

  • The Department of Home Affairs has announced concessions that apply to all s485 streams, and which allow applicants to lodge and be granted their visa offshore, if they are affected by COVID travel restrictions.


3. Subclass 888 – Business Innovation Visa – Residency requirements

Normally, applicants for the above visa, must have been present in Australia for at least 1 year in the 2 years immediately before they apply. As long as the first visa (provisional) was granted before 30th June 2019, time spent overseas can now be counted as time spent in Australia.


4. Subclass 887 Skilled Regional Visas – Onshore and Offshore concessions

Eligible applicants can make their application and have the visa granted while they are outside Australia, during the COVID concessionary period commencing 1st February 2020.

Also, the employment in a specified regional area and residence in a specified regional area have been reduced from 12 months to 9 months and from 24 months to 18 months respectively.

For onshore applicants, the residentiary requirement is the same as before, but the work experience requirement has also been reduced to 9 months.

This newsletter only provides general information related to current migration matters. The information contained in this communication does not constitute specific migration advice, and should not be construed or relied on as such. Professional advice should be sought for the specifics of your situation prior to any action being taken. BD Welsh and Co disclaims any liability (including, without limitation, for any direct or indirect or consequential costs, loss or damage or loss of profits) arising from anything done or omitted to be done by any party in reliance, whether wholly or partially, on any of the information contained in this newsletter. Any party that relies on the information does so at its own risk. Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation.