THE NEW STUDENT VISA FRAMEWORK FROM 1 JULY 2016 – OVERVIEW

From 1 July 2016, a single immigration risk framework applies to all international students and replaces the previous streamlined visa processing and Assessment Level frameworks.
Student visa[/caption] This new framework has only two visas: Subclass 500 (Student) and Subclass 590 (Student Guardian).

EVIDENTIARY REQUIREMENTS

The new immigration risk framework will be used to guide the evidence of English language and Financial capacity that a student needs to provide with their visa application.

In other words, from 1 July 2016 all international students will apply for a single Student visa (subclass 500) with the only difference that some students will be eligible for Streamlined Evidentiary Requirements and other students for Regular Evidentiary Requirements:

  • Streamlined Evidentiary Requirements (SER) – WITHOUT requirements to provide evidence of their financial and English language capacity with their visa application (however, the DIBP retains the discretion to seek such         information where appropriate); and
  • Regular Evidentiary Requirements (RER) – WITH requirements to provide evidence of their financial and English   language capacity with their visa application

Which evidentiary requirement is applicable (SER or RER) will depend on two factors – the immigration risk outcomes associated with the student’s education provider and country of citizenship. To find out this a student needs to enter details of education provider and nationality using the online tool –

http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Stud/education-providers#

The full version of the online tool intended to go live on 1 July 2016.

WHAT IF EDUCATION PROVIDER IS NOT ON THE LIST

If your education provider is not on the list, most probably your education provider will be given the highest immigration risk rating (3) automatically.

WHAT IF COUNTRY OF PASSPORT IS NOT ON THE LIST

If your country of passport is not on the list, most probably your country of passport will be given the highest immigration risk rating (3) automatically

HOW TO BECOME ELIGIBLE FOR STREAMLINED EVIDENTIARY REQUIREMENTS

If your country of passport has the lowest immigration risk rating – the 1st, then irrespective of the chosen education provider, you will be eligible for SER.

If your country of passport has the 2nd immigration risk rating, then you have to choose education providers only with the 1st or 2nd immigration risk rating to become eligible for SER.

And if your country of passport has the 3rd immigration risk rating or is not on the list, then you have to choose education providers only with the 1st immigration risk rating to become eligible for SER.

However, due to commercial sensitivities, the immigration risk ratings of education providers and countries will not be published. So at this stage it is not clear how to use these rules in practice.

WHO CANNOT APPLY ONSHORE?

Form 1 July 2016, persons who hold the following visas are unable to apply for a Student Visa in Australia –

  • Subclass 600 Visitor visa – Sponsored Family stream and Approved Destination Status stream
  • Subclass 771 Transit visa – whole subclass
  • Subclass 426 Domestic Worker (Temporary) – Diplomatic or Consular visa
  • Subclass 403 Temporary Work (International Relations) visa – Domestic Worker (Diplomatic/consular) stream    only
  • Subclass 995 Diplomatic visa – granted to a primary applicant

APPLYING WHILE UNLAWFUL

If unlawful, the applicant must apply for a student visa within 28 days of last student visa expiry and not previously been granted a visa based on an application made when the applicant did not hold a substantive visa.

FINANCIAL REQUIREMENTS

The student must demonstrate sufficient funds to meet the following –

  • Travel expenses, and
  • Living costs and expenses for the first 12 months of applicant’s stay ($19,830 – for the main applicant; $19,830 – for a Student Guardian; $6,940 – for a Spouse or de-facto partner; $2,970 – any dependent children plus $8,000 for schooling per annum, if applicable), and
  • Annual course fees for the first 12 month of the applicants stay.

ENGLISH LANGUAGE REQUIREMENTS

2 years is the maximum time period in which an English test must be taken immediately before the date an application is made, or immediately before a decision is made on an application.

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