485 visa replacement stream

New Replacement stream

This SC 485 stream allows holders of these visas to obtain another SC 485 visa of the same duration as their original visa, if they were unable to stay in Australia for the full period of their previous visa due to the COVID restrictions in force from 1 February 2020 to 14 December 2021.

Current and former SC 485 may apply if they:

  • were outside Australia when the original SC 485 visa was granted and entered Australia on the original visa before 15 December 2021, departed Australia after this entry but before 15 December 2021 while holding the original visa,


  • were in Australia when the original SC 485 visa was granted and were outside Australia at any time between 1 February 2020 and 14 December 2021 while holding the original visa.

Secondary visa holders who were granted SC 485 visas on the basis of being the member of the family unit of the primary visa holder, will also be eligible for the Replacement stream if the primary visa holder is eligible.

A cut-off date of 1 January 2027 will be imposed on applications for the Replacement stream.

The Replacement stream will not be open to applications for persons who were already on their second Subclass 485 visa in the Post-Study Work stream during the period of international travel restrictions.

The Replacement stream will not be open to applications by persons who have had a Subclass 485 visa, or a visa granted after the applicant held a Subclass 485 visa, cancelled, except those who requested in writing that the Minister cancel their visa, or whose visa cancellation decision was set aside by the Tribunal.

Second Post Study and replacement stream visas

Holders of SC 485 Post Study stream visas who were required to live in regional areas for the grant of a second SC 485 and were disrupted by the COVID arrangements, may now meet this requirement if they have studied on a student visa and lived on their Replacement stream SC 485 visa in a regional area.

This Instrument applies to applications for SC 485 visas made on or after 1 July 2022.

This Instrument commences on 1 July 2022.

Important: This stream will be available for new applications from mid-2022. Further details will become available over the coming months. Please continue to check back for updates.

The COVID-19 replacement stream is a replacement for the initial Temporary Graduate visa. It is only available for Temporary Graduate visa holders impacted by the Australian travel restrictions. This means, people who could not stay in Australia for the full period allowed by their previous Temporary Graduate visa can have a replacement visa issued that will permit the same length of stay as the original visa.

On 18 February 2022, certain eligible Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) visa holders will have their visas extended or enlivened to 30 September 2022. Visa holders eligible for an extension will be notified directly by the Department.

This interim measure allows eligible Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) visa holders who were affected by COVID-19 travel restrictions to enter, or remain in,​ Australia to live and work until they can apply for and be granted a replacement Temporary Graduate visa.

Latest 485 visa changes and updates:

The Government recognises the valuable contribution of temporary visa holders and acknowledges the disruption caused by COVID-19.​


To be eligible for a Temporary Graduate visa EXTENSION:

  • visa holders must have held a Temporary Graduate visa on 15 December 2021
  • the current visa expires before 30 September 2022
  • the primary visa holder was in Australia at time of the visa grant
  • the primary visa holder has been outside Australia for any period between 1 February 2020 and 14 December 2021 (inclusive)
  • the visa has not been cancelled since 15 December 2021
  • the holder has not been granted a further substantive visa since 15 December 2021.

To be eligible for visa ENLIVENING:

  • visa holders must have held a Temporary Graduate visa that visa expired between 1 February 2020 and 14 December 2021 inclusive
  • the primary visa holder was in Australia at time of grant
  • the primary holder of the visa has been outside Australia for any period between 1 February 2020 and 14 December 2021 inclusive
  • the visa was not cancelled
  • the visa holder has not been granted a further substantive visa.
Staying in Australia

Applicants will receive the full validity of their initial Temporary Graduate visa. This is determined by the level of their qualification.


The visa extension is free and will occur automatically. You do not need to contact the Department.

The visa extension will include family members that were included in the original Temporary Graduate visa.

COVID-19 Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) replacement stream visa

Applications for the COVID-19 Temporary Graduate replacement stream visa open on 1 July 2022.

The Temporary Graduate replacement stream visa will give current and former visa holders impacted by COVID-19 travel restrictions the same length of stay as their original visa.

FAQ: 485 Graduate Visa

The 485 Graduate Visa has experienced several changes in the past two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This FAQ provides prospective visa applicants some answers to common questions.

What is the 485 Graduate Visa?

The 485 Graduate Visa is for international students who have completed two years of study in Australia. The length of the visa can be from 18 months to 4 years, and this is dependent on your situation. This visa allows applicants to live, work and study in Australia temporarily.

What streams does the 485 Graduate Visa have?

What are the 485 Graduate Visa requirements and how are these altered to account for COVID-19?

How long will my 485 Graduate Visa be granted for?

The length of stay granted on the 485 Graduate Visa is dependent on the applicant and the type of course they have completed. This may be something you consider prior to commencing study in Australia.

Can I bring my family with me?

Yes, the 485 Graduate Visa allows for the main applicant to bring their dependent children or spouse/de-facto partner/same-sex partner.

Can I be granted an extension on a 485 Graduate Visa?

485 Graduate Visas can be granted extensions in certain circumstances. If you have graduated from a course that you completed at a regional institution and you resided for a minimum of two years in a regional area immediately before applying for your second 485 visa, you may be eligible for the visa extension.

The second 485 Graduate Visa which is the extended visa, does require that the applicant continue their ongoing residence in a regional area of Australia.

The following options are available to visa applicants:

Is the Australian Government being flexible with some requirements due to COVID-19?

The Australian Government is taking a more flexible approach to the rules and regulations concerning student visas due to COVID-19.

  • Students who cannot continue their studies in Australia can defer their study and this will not impact their visa status
  • Students who are studying online due to COVID-19 will not breach their visa conditions
  • Flexibility with the maximum amount of work hours per week for specific critical services
What are the fees for the 485 Graduate Visa application?

How long does it take for the 485 Graduate Visa to be processed?

The processing times vary depending on the stream that you apply for.

Graduate Work Stream
  • 75% of applications are processed within 10 months
  • 90% of applications are processed within 12 months
Post-Study Work Stream
  • 75% of applications are processed within 10 months
  • 90% of applications are processed within 11 months
If you require further advice or information, you can contact Visa Envoy. Our standard professional fees are as follows:
  • 485 visa (Post Study Work Stream): Starting from $900 + GST (additional $400 for each dependent)
  • 485 (Graduate Work Stream- includes skills assessment): Starting from $1500 + GST (additional $400 for each dependent)
  • 485 Subsequent Entrant: VisaEnvoy fee is $1,600 (plus $150 GST) and Visa Application Charge (VAC) is $1,680.
  • We offer a complimentary migration pathway consultation to our 485 visa clients (valued at $160)

Please note that for more complex cases, the fees are determined on a case-by-case basis.

September 2022 update:

The Australian Government will increase the duration of post study work rights of international students to strengthen the pipeline of skilled labour.

Post study work rights for select degrees in areas of verified skill shortages will be increased from:

  • Two years to four years for select Bachelor’s degrees
  • Three years to five years for select Masters degrees
  • Four years to six years for select PhDs.

A working group will be established to advise the Ministers for Home Affairs and Education on the development of this and other relevant issues. The group will report to Ministers by 28 October 2022.

Related: Migration cap increase to 195,000

End of the two-year extension of post-study work rights

The Department of Education have noted that the extended post-study work rights which provided international graduates with select degrees an additional two years on their Temporary Graduate visa (subclass 485) will no longer be available from mid-2024.

The Department has confirmed that there is currently no set date for when the two year extension will cease but they will update their website when further information becomes available. 

25 November 2023 update and 485 visas

From 25 November 2023, online study requirements reverted to pre-COVID settings. However, online study undertaken during the COVID concession period (1 February 2020 to 25 November 2023) will continue to count towards the Australian Study Requirement (ASR).

As all students were required to return to in-person study in July 2023 by TEQSA, the tertiary education regulator, we anticipate that this position should not disadvantage any students, but also provide a clear end date to the announcement of the previous government made in November 2021.

From 25 November 2023, the subclass 485 can now be granted no matter the location of the applicant at the time of grant.

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