From 20 January 2021, Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) visa holders on the post-study work stream who have graduated from a regional educational institution and have lived in regional Australia on their first 485 will be eligible for a second 485.
The initiative will provide an additional incentive for international students to study at a regional institutions and to live in regional areas post-study, boosting diversity and prosperity in regional Australia.
Where is Regional?
The term used to define regional Australia is “designated regional area” and it includes two categories:
- Category 2: designated city or major regional centre: means Perth, Adelaide, the Gold Coast, the Sunshine Coast, Newcastle/Lake Macquarie, Wollongong/Illawarra, Canberra, Geelong and Hobart
- Category 3: regional centre or other regional area: means all other areas of regional Australia apart from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, and the areas listed in the definition of designated city or major regional centre).
Who is eligible for a second Graduate Visa?
Students in Australia who:
- Graduated with a Bachelor, Master or PhD degree from a regional education institution and
- Held their first 485 post-study work stream visa at time of applying for the second 485 and
- Have lived, worked and studied only in a designated regional area for two years continuously immediately before applying for the second 485 visa and
- Have lived only in the relevant designated regional while undertaking the study for which the first 485 was granted.
Is another English Test Mandatory?
No evidence of English language proficiency is required for applications for the second 485 post-study work stream.
Do I need to continue to live in a designated regional area on the second Graduate Visa?
Yes. This visa will be subject to the new Condition 8601 which requires primary and secondary visa holders to live, work and study only in the relevant designated regional areas for which their visas were granted.
How long is the second visa for?
This will depend on which regional category you graduated and lived in:
- 2 years visa: For students who studied and lived in a Category 3 location (regional centre or other regional area)
- 1 year: for students not eligible for the 2 years second visa, but have studied and lived in any designated regional area.
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LIN 19/217 - Migration Amendment (Temporary Graduate Visas) Regulations 2020