Extending an Australia student visa is no easy feat. There are several rules you need to follow before you can apply for a student visa extension. Sometimes, your visa may not even be eligible for an extension.
In this article, you can read more about whether you can extend your student visa and how to do so.
Can I Extend an Australia Student Visa 500?
You have to apply for a new student visa in order to extend your time in Australia. However, you must have very compelling reasons in order to be eligible for a new visa:
- Your current visa is about to expire without finishing your study course.
- You are starting a new study program.
- Your graduate research candidature was lengthened.
- Your graduate research thesis hasn’t been marked yet after submission and your visa is about to expire.
- Your first visa was canceled by the Department of Foreign Affairs.
How Do I Extend an Australia Student Visa?
For a student visa extension be sure to keep in mind these steps:
- Check your visa conditions.
- Apply for a waiver of the visa condition.
- Apply for an extension of your CoE (Confirmation of Enrolment).
- Extend your health insurance OSHC.
- Prepare your documents.
- Apply for the visa online.
Check Your Visa Conditions
If your student visa is subjected to a no further stay condition, then you won’t be able to apply for another visa unless you apply to waive the condition. For student visas, there are two types of no further stay conditions:
No further stay condition 8534
Your case officer will make the decision whether to include condition 8534 on your student visa. If this condition is imposed on your student visa, then you won’t be able to apply for another Australia visa unless you are applying for:
You can apply for a temporary graduate visa by using a paper application form and you won’t be required to apply for a waiver of the visa condition.
You don’t have to apply for a waiver on this visa condition if you’ve completed the initial course of study and you want to apply for one of these visas:
- General skilled migration visa- subclass 189 or subclass 190.
- Business talent visa- subclass 132.
- Employee nomination scheme visa- subclass 186.
- Regional sponsored migration scheme visa- subclass 187.
- Business innovation and investment (provisional) visa- subclass 188.
- Temporary Skill Shortage visa-subclass 482.
No further stay condition 8535
This condition is mandatory for student visa holders who are supported by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade or Department of Defence. You won’t be able to apply for another visa with this condition other than:
- A temporary student visa (class TU). If you are sponsored by the Commonwealth or a foreign government.
- A protection visa.
If you want to apply for any other visa in Australia, you have to apply for a waiver of condition 8535.
Apply for Waiver of the Visa Condition
You must have very compelling reasons why you need a condition waiver for your visa. You have to submit a request for a waiver by filling in the waiver form online or on paper and submit it to the Department of Foreign Affairs.
Attach a copy of your passport bio page and evidence of why you need a waiver (medical condition, personal problems, unable to finish the study program, etc.) application. If the Department grants your waiver request, then you can apply for another visa. However, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you will be granted a new visa.
Apply For an Extension of Your Coe (Confirmation of Enrolment)
Your confirmation letter of enrolment expires and it’s important that have a valid CoE if you want to apply for a new student visa. Your CoE is issued by your education provider and it’s important that you apply for a new CoE as soon as possible as most institutions won’t be able to issue a new letter on the spot.
Extend Your Health Insurance OSHC
You have to apply for your health insurance extension separately before you apply for your visa. If your insurance is still valid, you don’t have to apply for an extension on your policy.
Prepare Your Documents
For your new visa application, you have to submit the same documents as your initial application. This includes your valid passport, identity card, civil documents, documents for your character condition, your GTE, and the rest of your supporting documents.
Apply for the Visa Online
Once you have all the documents ready you can apply for a new visa through your ImmiAccount. Remember that you are still required to pay a visa application fee.
When Should I Apply For a Student Visa Extension?
You should apply for your new student visa at least 8 weeks before your current visa expires. After you submit your application you will most likely receive a bridging visa. The bridging visa allows you to stay legally in Australia while your new student visa is being processed.
The Department of Foreign Affairs will most likely issue a bridging visa A (BVA), if you want to travel then you have to switch to a bridging visa B (BVB) because if you leave Australia under a BVA your bridging visa won’t be valid anymore and you can’t re-enter the country.
How Long Can I Stay in Australia After My Student Visa Expires?
You can’t stay in Australia after your student visa expires, you must have a valid visa in order to stay legally.
Australia Student Visa Extension Fee
Your visa extension fee costs AUD 630. This is the same amount as when you applied for your initial student visa. Even for an extension, the visa charges change if you have dependents with you.
Australia Student Visa Extension Fee Waiver
You won’t have to pay a student visa extension fee if you held a visa before or after February 1, 2020. This waiver is applicable to students who weren’t able to finish their studies due to Covid-19:
- Students who had to pause their course due to travel restrictions.
- Students who had to switch to part-time study because their educational provider couldn’t provide core subjects.
- Students who weren’t able to finish their workplace-based training.
Your education provider must complete this form on your behalf, and then you can submit the form to the Department of Foreign Affairs. You have to attach form 1545 to your completed visa application- only online applications are accepted in this case.
Australia Student Visa Extension for Thesis Submission
Research graduates have to finish their thesis within their visa deadline. For the majority of cases, a student visa will be valid in accordance with the student’s study program length. If you haven’t managed to submit your thesis by the end of your study course, you have 28 days to leave Australia or make other visa arrangements.
If you submitted your research paper and have received notice it’s been accepted for marking, you should apply for a Confirmation of Marking Thesis letter immediately and a new student visa. Having a CMT and another student visa lets you stay in Australia while your thesis is being marked and you can continue working as well.