Newsletter – September Migration Updates

Digital Passenger Declaration to be instated

The Digital Passenger Declaration will soon be introduced to apply to all travellers entering Australia. This new border pass will replace the current Incoming Passenger Card and digital COVID-19 Australian Travel Declaration form. It will store personal information such as vaccination status and will allow for vaccinated individuals to travel freely.

Information will also be shared with states and territories for contact tracing and other health purposes.  This is aimed at removing the ban on international travel by vaccinated Australians and allow for home quarantine.

The new system is set to be introduced this month to allow vaccinated travellers to enter Australia. The federal ban on outgoing travel by Australians is expected to be removed in November.

Read the Sydney Morning Herald article on this...

Afghanistan Crisis Update 

The Department of Home Affairs has now stated that it has ceased evacuation operations in Kabul. The Department is still processing visa applications from Afghan nationals. It has also advised that Afghan visa holders in Australia will not be asked to return to Afghanistan due to the security risks.

Immediate family of people who have been resettled in Australia are currently being given highest priority for visa processing, along with individuals who have been employed in support of Australia’s involvement in Afghanistan, often referred to as Locally Engaged Employees (LEEs). LEEs and their immediate family members with valid visas are also held to be exempt from current travel restrictions.

Read more on the Department's website...

Concessions for Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) visa eligibility

The Department has changed some requirements for a Subclass 485 visa for applicants who have been affected by COVID-19.

Online study done outside of Australia will now count towards the Australian Study Requirement for student visa holders. This will only be counted from the time that a Student visa has been granted and onwards.

Graduates may also apply for and be granted a Subclass 485 visa while outside of Australia, as long as all other requirements have been met. Offshore applicants must hold or have held a Student visa in the past.

The Department will also provide extra time to provide English language tests, biometrics collection and health examinations if applicants have been unable to complete an exam due to COVID-19.

Queensland State Nomination

Queensland has not yet began accepting nomination applications. We expect that this will open imminently, as it has been announced that it is due to open later this month.

Queensland Skilled Migration Website...

Medical Examinations Ceased

We would like to remind our clients that immigration medical examinations have temporarily ceased in New South Wales, Victoria and Australian Capital Territory. The Department is aware of the public health orders in place in these states and will allow extra time to complete any requested examinations.

Read the Sydney Morning Herald article on this...

Australian Travel Declaration

Prior to travel to Australia, travellers will need to complete an Australian Travel Declaration 72 hours before departure. This applies to Australian citizens and permanent residents, people exempt from Australia’s travel restrictions or who have been granted an individual exemption, and transit passengers.

Following completion, an email confirmation will indicate whether you will need to quarantine on arrival to Australia. You may still be required to quarantine for 14 days if you are fully vaccinated.

Please note that the above information is only general information and is not legal advice and should not be relied upon. Please contact our office for immigration advice specific to your situation.