Covid 408 visa closure

As previously announced by the Australian government, the Subclass 408 (Covid-19 pandemic event) visa is finally closing to all applicants on 1 February 2024.  The Migration (COVID-19 Pandemic event for Temporary Activity (Subclass 408) visa) Repeal Instrument 2024 repeals the instrument that specified the requirements for COVID 408 visa and the Covid-19 pandemic is no longer a Australian Government endorsed events from 1 February 2024.

This effectively brings to an end the 408 Covid visa, which has been widely used in Australia in the last few years.  The 408 Covid visa was both a relief to the Australian economy that was suffering skill shortages during the pandemic and border closers, but also a source of criticism that the visa was also widely abused and misused and overdue for removal.

For current 408 visa holders, we strongly recommend seeking immigration advice on your visa options and how to remain lawful if you wish to stay longer in Australia.

NSW opens Subclass 491 Pathway 1 – Shifting the focus to regional areas

The NSW Government has opened its Skilled Work Regional Subclass 491 program under Pathway 1: applying directly to Investment NSW if the applicant has an established work history with a regional NSW-based employer.

The aim of this pathway is to encourage and bolster applications from people who are already making a significant contribution to regional NSW and have been working in the region for 12 months.

Pathway 1 has additional criteria to this pathway, including:

  • the applicant is currently living and working in a designated regional area of NSW and have continuously done so for the past 12 months
  • the qualifying skilled employment in the twelve months immediately before applying must be with a single regional NSW-based employer and in the nominated (or closely related) occupation
  • the occupation must be deemed skilled by NSW
  • the position must be paid at the minimum TSMIT of $70,000 (pro-rata if under 38 hours per week) by the qualifying employer.

Further information is available on the Investment NSW website.

Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa – Subclass 188

The AUD5 million investment provisional visa is available for individuals who invest in eligible Australian investments and maintain investment activity in Australia.

With this visa, you can:

Please note that the investment rules applicable at the time of your Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188) application in the Significant Investor stream will remain in effect for the duration of your visa, including any subsequent visa applications in the Significant Investor Extension stream related to your visa.

You may seek advice from Gilton Valeo Lawyers to ensure compliance with the visa’s investment requirements.  It is the individual’s responsibility to ensure their investments are compliant with the visa guidelines.


Gilton Valeo Lawyers can answer your questions about Australia’s immigration system

As experts in Australian immigration, Gilton Valeo Lawyers can guide you in identifying the best immigration pathways to bring people over to start your Australian office, provide you with strategic consulting along the way, and connect you with our partners to make sure everything goes smoothly.

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