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Coronavirus and Temporary work visa holders in Australia

Posted on April 11, 2020
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Australia temporary work visa

The impact of COVID-19 has affected businesses across the world. In Australia many businesses have been affected by the lockdown and some have reduced their services. This has led to many questions among temporary work visa holders in the country. Here we will try and answer the common questions of Subclass 457 and 482 visa holders in the current situation.

Can I work on my 457/482 visa from overseas without being required to return to Australia?

If it is possible to do your job remotely, then you can work from overseas. A written agreement should be formed between you and the sponsor for record-keeping and sponsorship obligations.

It should be noted that work done overseas might not be counted as the time spent working for your sponsoring employer in Australia for permanent visa purposes (such as a Subclass 186 in the Transitional Temporary Residence stream). Immigration authorities will decide on this aspect on a case-by-case basis.

Can I access my Superannuation payment early?

Subclass 457 and 482 visa holders will be able to get as much as AUD10,000 of their superannuation in this financial year. An application should be sent directly to the superannuation funds provider for this.

Can my employer decrease my pay?

Your employer can reduce your pay. It is possible if the pay is still the market rate and above the Temporary Skilled Income Threshold (TSMIT), which is currently AUD 53,900.

Can I go on leave without pay?

Subclass 482 or 457 visa holders are eligible for unpaid leave under the National Work Requirements (e.g. research or sabbatical leave, leisure or holiday leave without pay, sick leave without pay).

Can my employer terminate my service?

In keeping with immigration rules, Standard Business Sponsors are expected to continue to fulfill their sponsorship obligations and follow the standard Fair Work rules in this period.

If your employment is terminated, you will  usually have 60 days to leave Australia or find a new sponsor, or apply for another form of visa to stay in the country before immigration authorities decide that you have violated the working conditions and try to revoke your visa 457/482.

 Immigration authorities have taken the view that visa holders who have been laid off due to Coronavirus and are unable to find a new sponsor will have to leave Australia. The Australian government has announced that in case you have to leave  the country in such a situation, the time you had already spent working with the original sponsor will be taken into account for the work requirement in your application for a  permanent employer-sponsored visa.

If your employment is terminated and you want to leave the country, then your employer must pay the travel expenses for you and your dependent family members.

Take the help of an immigration consultant for best advice in the current situation.

If you are looking to Study, Work, Visit, Invest or Migrate Overseas, talk to Y-Axis, the World’s No. 1 Immigration & Visa Company.

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