Temporary Graduate visa is for international students who have recently graduated from an Australian education institution. The visa allows eligible students to live and work in Australia temporarily after completion of studies for up to 4 years.

It is a great option for students who would like to extend their stay in Australia after their studies. It also helps those who are seeking to stay in Australia permanently – either through General Skilled Migration or employer sponsorship.

There is No occupations list for the Post Study Work Visa – the area of specialisation is not relevant providing your studies are at the right level.

Skills assessment is NOT required.

The visa has full work rights, and also full study rights. It allows you to travel freely to and from Australia during the validity of the visa.

Bring your immediate family members stay with you.

Eligibility for Post-Study Work Stream

  • Aged under 50 at the time of application
  • Meet the Australian study requirement:
  • In the past 6 months, students need to complete studies at the Bachelor, Masters or Doctorate level which take at least 2 academic years. (92 weeks)
  • The Australian study requirement cannot be met in less than 16 calendar months.
  • Meet health and character requirement
  • Not have had a visa canceled or a previous application refused
  • Have adequate health insurance
  • Sign the Australian values statement
  • have no debt to the Australian Government
  • Valid Police check for your self and any members of your family aged 16 or over
  • You must apply for your 485 visa within 6 months of completion of your Australian studies. You must either hold a student visa when you apply, or to have held a student visa within the last 6 months. You must also make sure that you apply prior to expiry of your student visa, or at least have applied for another visa and are on a bridging A or B visa when the 485 application is lodged.

English requirements:

You can either show that you hold a valid passport from the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Canada, New Zealand or the Republic of Ireland, or prove your English proficiency. To do this, show evidence that in the last 3 years, you achieved:

IELTS – Overall score of at least 6 with a minimum score of 5 for each of the 4 parts

TOEFL iBT – Total score of at least 64 with a minimum score of 4 for listening, 4 for reading, 14 for writing and 14 for speaking

PTE Academic – Overall score of at least 50 with a minimum score of 36 for each of the 4 parts

Occupational English Test (OET) – At least B for each of the 4 parts

Cambridge (C1 Advanced test) – Overall at least 169 with a minimum score of at least 154 in each of the 4 test components

Unlike applicants in the Graduate Work stream, applicants in the Post-Study Work stream are not required to nominate an occupation

How long is the Temporary Graduate Visa Valid for?

  • 2 years: completion of a Bachelor Degree, Bachelor with Honours, Masters by Coursework or Masters (Extended)
  • 3 years: Masters by Research
  • 4 years: Doctorate

International graduates studying in a regional area

From 2021, international students studying at all locations outside Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane will be offered an extension on the current two year Post-study work stream of the Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) visa (TGV), which applies to Bachelor and Masters by coursework graduates.

Eligibility will include international students who studied at a regional campus of a metropolitan university.

The additional post-study work arrangements will become available in 2021, and will require ongoing residence in a regional area.

  • International graduates who have studied and lived in Category 2 will be eligible for an additional year on a second Temporary Graduate visa.
  • International graduates who have studied and lived in Category 3 will be eligible for an additional two years on a second Temporary Graduate visa.

Eligible regional areas

The regional definition is comprised of the following 3 categories:

  • Category 1 – ‘Major Cities’ of Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane do not receive any regional incentives
  • Category 2 – ‘Cities and Major Regional Centres’ of Perth, Adelaide, the Gold Coast, the Sunshine Coast, Canberra, Newcastle/Lake Macquarie, Wollongong/Illawarra, Geelong and Hobart
  • Category 3 – ‘Regional Centres and Other Regional Areas’

The regional definition offers regional incentives for skilled migrants who migrate to locations classified as Category 2 ‘Cities and Major Regional Centres’ or Category 3 ‘Regional Centres and Other Regional Areas’.

Bridging Visa

When you apply for your 485 visa, you would in general receive a Bridging A visa allowing you to remain in Australia during processing of your 485 visa application.The Bridging A visa has full work rights. If you held a substantive visa (eg student visa) when you apply for your 485, the work rights on the bridging visa will come into effect when the substantive visa expires.The Bridging A visa may cease if you depart Australia. If you wish to travel whilst waiting for a decision on your 485 visa, you may wish to apply for a Bridging B visa to facilitate your travel.

Processing Times

75% of applications: 71 days

90% of application: 4 months

Family and the 485 Visa

You can include a spouse and dependent children when you make your 485 visa application. It can include a De Facto relationship where you are living together in an exclusive relationship with your partner (at last 12 months).

To include dependents, they must be in Australia when you lodge your 485 application and they must hold or have recently held student visas.

You can also apply to have dependents join you after your 485 visa is granted. This is referred to as a “subsequent entrant” application. This is a really useful pathway if you get married after you apply for your 485, or if your partner or children did not travel with you to Australia on student visas.

Make the Most of your Graduate Temporary Visa

You can only hold one Graduate Temporary Subclass 485 as a primary applicant in your lifetime.

As a result, you should ensure that you make the most of the opportunity to improve your eligibility for migration to Australia. Some of the best ways to do this include:

  • Professional Year: professional years are available for accountants, IT professionals and engineers. They can help with passing skills assessment, and result in an additional 5 points for the skilled migration points test. More significantly, they include an internship and this is a good way to impress potential employers and get your first professional job in Australia.
  • Work Experience: you can work full time on a 485 visa. This is a great opportunity to find potential employers – if they give you a full time job offer, this opens up various employer sponsored visa options which can lead to permanent residence
  • Regional Opportunities: your 485 visa allows you to relocate anywhere in Australia. This allows you to live and work in regional areas, and this can greatly improve your chances of obtaining state nomination and a job offer may lead to a permanent RSMS visa.

The Graduate Temporary Subclass 485 visa is a great way to extend your stay in Australia after your studies, and is a good stepping stone onto permanent residence if you use it wisely.

The visa can be quite technical and missing even one requirement can result in the opportunity being lost.

If you would like advice on staying on in Australia after your studies, please talk with us today: