Australia Changes to the Student Visa Program Stage One Implementation of the Knight Review
Stage one of the Australian Government’s response to the Strategic Review of the student visa program is proposed to be progressively being implemented before the end of 2011. The majority of these changes are proposed to be implemented on 5 November 2011 and are detailed below.
The government proposes to reduce the financial requirements for higher risk Assessment Level 3 and Assessment Level 4 student visa applicants on 5 November 2011. This would mean that students who are subject to Assessment Level 3 or Assessment Level 4 will need up to AUD36 000 less in the bank when applying for a visa. Applicants for the non-university sector in particular will benefit from this change.
On 5 November 2011, the government proposes to introduce a new genuine temporary entrant requirement for all student visa applicants. This requirement will help to reduce migration risk and maintain the integrity of the student visa program. Student visa applicants will be assessed on whether their individual circumstances indicate that their main aim is for a temporary stay in Australia. Applicants seeking to exploit the student visa program, for example, those whose main purpose is to work, will have their applications refused. Student visa holders who have completed their studies and not obtained a further visa will be required to depart Australia.