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Student Visas Intentions To Reside “Temporarily” Removed From 23 March 2024

Student Visas: Intentions To Reside “Temporarily” Removed From 23 March 2024

For student visa applications, the expected discontinuation of the intention to temporarily stay in Australia is finally taking place on March 23, 2024. This change will be applied to all student visa applications submitted from this date on.

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The temporary stay of student visa applicants in the country has always been criticized as legal fiction.

The preamble to the current Ministerial Direction says that:

A legitimate temporary entrant will have circumstances supporting a genuine intention to enter and stay in Australia temporarily, even though this intention may eventually change to an intention to use legal means to remain in Australia indefinitely or permanently.

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While many people dream of living in Australia permanently, it is not astonishing that a student aiming for temporary residence may shift their intention towards permanent residence once their student visa gets approved.

While the government realizes the confusion and demoralization of potential migrants due to this criterion, it will launch a legislative instrument on March 23, 2024. This legislative instrument will modify the Migration Regulations 1994 (Cth) to eliminate references to the intention to stay in Australia temporarily. Moreover, this legislative instrument would cover primary and secondary visa applications, where applicable.

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However, this amendment doesn’t open the currently throttled floodgates of student visa applications. Student visa applicants under Subclass 500 must demonstrate their genuineness. Moreover, the applicants will still be assessed when they enter and will continue to be assessed while they stay as students based on their:

  • Circumstances
  • Immigration history
  • Compliance with visa conditions
  • Parent’s, legal guardian’s, or spouse’s intentions (if they are a minor)
  • Any other relevant matter concerning their situation

This may shift the focus to assessing whether the applicant intends to work rather than study. It may also provide grounds for student visa denials when it comes to serial applicants with no course progress.

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Furthermore, the ministerial direction is anticipated to be replaced to offer clear guidance for decision-makers in assessing this new genuine student requirement. The amended regulations will replace the current ministerial direction, which must be followed.

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