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Overview

The Temporary Graduate Visa (Subclass 485) is an Australian visa that allows international students who have completed their studies in Australia to stay, work and/or undertake further studies in the country temporarily after graduating. The 485 visa is designed to provide recent graduates with the opportunity to gain practical work experience, which can be valuable for their future careers and may also be a pathway to permanent residency. 

The Temporary Graduate Visa has four streams which the student can apply for. These include the Graduate Work Stream, the Post-Study Work Stream, the Second Post-Study Work Stream, and Replacement Stream. Each stream has different requirements. Thus, it is important to check the correct stream before you apply for your visa.

Who can apply for a Temporary Graduate Visa?

In order to qualify for a Temporary Graduate Visa, you must:

  • Be under 50 years of age
  • Have held a student visa in the last 6 months
  • Have completed your study in the last 6 months
  • Meet the Australian Study requirements
  • Meet the English requirements
  • Provide evidence of adequate health insurance
  • Meet the character requirements

485 Visa Updates Timeline from 2023 to 2024

May 2024 updates

Post-Higher Education Work stream (former Post-Study Work stream)

 

Masters (research) and doctoral degree (PhD) graduates and Hong Kong and British National Overseas passport holders will still be eligible if they are under 50 years of age.

The ‘select degree’ 2 year extension will cease.

Stay periods will change to the following:

  • Bachelor degree (including honours) – up to 2 years
  • Masters (coursework and extended) – up to 2 years
  • Masters (research) and doctoral degree (PhD) – up to 3 years.

Hong Kong and British National Overseas passport holders may be able to stay for up to 5 years.

Stay periods for Indian nationals, as agreed in the Australia India – Economic Cooperation and Trade Agreement (AI-ECTA), remain as:

  • Bachelor degree (including honours) – up to 2 years
  • Bachelor degree (with first class honours in STEM, including ICT) – up to 3 years
  • Masters (coursework, extended and research) – up to 3 years
  • Doctoral degrees (PhD) – up to 4 years.

(Learn More: Changes to the Temporary Graduate Visa Subclass 485)

April 2024 updates

From 1st July 2024,

  • The maximum age to apply for the Visa 485 has been confirmed to be reduced from 50 years to 35 years old.
  • The duration for the Visa 485 has been confirmed to change back to 2 years for Bachelor and Master courses and 3 years for Master (by research) and PhD.

(Learn More: Changes to the Temporary Graduate Visa Subclass 485)

March 2024 updates

From 23 March 2024,

  • The minimum English score required for 485 visas increases from IELTS 6.0 to 6.5 (or equivalent), and all band scores (listening, reading, writing and speaking) must not be under 5.5.
  • The test validity window is reduced from 3 years to 1 year only, which means that you must achieve the required test scores within 1 year prior to the day you lodge your 485 visa application.
  • The new 485 English score requirements standards don’t apply to Hong Kong and British National Overseas passport holders. This means that the applicants from these regions only need to obtain an IELTS overall of 6.0, with no band score under 5.0, to be eligible for a 485 visa.

(Learn more: New English Requirements For The 485 Visa In Australia)

December 2023 updates

Australian Government published the Migration Strategy, which mentioned that the government was planning to decrease the duration of the 485 Visa and increase the English requirements.

If you want to know how long you can stay in Australia under visa 485, contact us on 07 3003 1899 or fill out the enquiry form 

What can you do with a Temporary Graduate Visa 485?  

The benefits of a Temporary Graduate Visa 485 vary, depending on the Stream what you are applying for.  

 

Benefits 

Graduate Work Stream  Post-Study Work Stream  Second Post-Study Work Stream  Replacement Stream 
 

Stay in Australia 

Up to 18 months   Usually between 2-4 years  

Applicants may be eligible for an extended 2 years  

Between 1- 4 years   Between 18 months to 6 years  
Multiple Travel to and from Australia   

Yes 

 

Yes 

 

Yes 

 

Yes 

 

Work in Australia 

Can work without any restriction   Can work without any restriction   Can work without any restriction   Can work without any restriction  
Study in Australia  Can study full-time in Australia  Can study full-time in Australia  Can study full-time in Australia  Can study full-time in Australia 
Include your family members in a 485 visa   

Yes 

 

Yes 

 

Yes 

 

Yes 

If you want to know how long you can stay in Australia under visa 485, contact us on 07 3003 1899 or fill out the enquiry form 

What are the 485 Visa Requirements 

The Temporary Graduate Visa (subclass 485) consists of 4 streams and each stream will have a different requirement.  

Graduate Work Stream

To be eligible for the Graduate Work Stream of the 485 visa, you must meet the following criteria: 

AgeYou must be under 50 years of age  

Visa requirement 

  • You are currently on a student visa and you are a main applicant.  
  • You must have held a student visa within the past 6 months, and you are now on a substantive visa, a Bridging Visa A or Bridging Visa B,  
  • If you are outside Australia, you must have held an eligible student visa.  

Study requirements: You must have completed a degree, diploma or trade qualification in Australia that is closely related to an occupation on the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) 

  • You course must be a CRICOS registered course. 
  • Your courses must be in English.  
  • The duration of your course must be at least 92 weeks (fulltime study) 
  • You completed the course within 16 calendar months. 

Skills and qualifications requirements:  

  • You must nominate an occupation on the MLTSSL (Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List) 
  • You must have held a diploma, degree or trade qualification that is closely related to the occupation that you nominate.  
  • You must have skill assessment or at least lodge the skill assessment application to the relevant assessing authority. 

English requirements: You must have IELTS overall 6.5 with no band score under 5.5 in the past 1 year before you lodge your visa application. (New English Requirements For The 485 Visa)

Health Insurance: You and your family members must have health insurance to cover your healthcare costs while you are in Australia.  

Character requirements: You must meet the health requirements to be eligible for this visa. 

No debt to the Australia Government: If you or your family member have a debt to the Australian Government, you need to pay back or arranged to pay back that debt. 

Post-Study Work Stream

To be eligible for the Post-Study Work Stream of the 485 visa, you must meet the following criteria: 

Age: You must be under 50 years of age  

Visa requirement: This stream is only available for those who applied for a student visa or granted a student visa on or after 5 November 2011. To be eligible for this stream, you also need to meet the below requirements:  

  • You are currently on a student visa where you are a main applicant.  
  • You must have held a student visa within the past 6 months, and you are now on a substantive visa, a Bridging Visa A or Bridging Visa B,  
  • If you are outside Australia, you must have held an eligible student visa 

Study requirements: You must have completed a degree in Australia.  

  • You course must be a CRICOS registered course. 
  • Your courses must be in English.  
  • The duration of your course must be at least 92 weeks(fulltime study) 
  • You completed the course in not less than 16 calendar months. 
  • You must have completed your course within 6 months right before you lodge the application for a 485 visa.  

Qualifications requirements:  

  • You must have completed an eligible degree, which includes: bachelor degree, bachelor (honours) degree, masters by coursework degree, masters (extended) degree, masters by research degree, or doctoral degree. 

English requirements: You must have IELTS overall 6.5 with no band score under 5.5 in the past 1 year before you lodge your visa application. (New English Requirements For The 485 Visa)

Health Insurance: You and your family members must have health insurance to cover your healthcare costs while you are in Australia.  

Character requirements: You must meet the health requirements to be eligible for this visa. 

No debt to the Australia Government: If you or your family member have a debt to the Australian Government, you need to pay back or arranged to pay back that debt. 

Second Post Study Work Stream

To be eligible for the Second Post-Study Work Stream of the 485 visa, you must meet the following criteria: 

Age: You must be under 50 years of age  

Visa requirement: This stream is designed for students: 

  • Who were granted their first 485 visa (post-study work stream), or  
  • Who were granted the first 485 visa (Replacement stream) based on holding the first visa in the post-study work stream.  

Australian Education Provider requirements 

  • You must have completed a degree that led to the grant of your first 485 visa (Post-study work stream). 
  • Your education provider must be a CRICOS registered. 
  • Your campus where you studied must be a regional area. 

Live and work in the designated regional area:  

  • As the holder of a first Temporary Graduate visa in the post-study work stream, or a Temporary Graduate visa in the replacement stream, you must have stayed in a regional area for minimum 2 years immediately before the date you apply for this stream. 

Study in regional area:  

  • You may be eligible for this stream if you studied in regional area and applied for the 1st 485PSW visa.  

Health Insurance: You and your family members must have health insurance to cover your healthcare costs while you are in Australia.  

Character requirements: You must meet the health requirements to be eligible for this visa. 

No debt to the Australia Government: If you or your family member have a debt to the Australian Government, you need to pay back or arranged to pay back that debt. 

Replacement Stream

To be eligible for the Replacement Stream of the 485 visa, you must meet the following criteria: 

Age: You must be under 50 years of age  

Visa requirement: This stream is designed for former or current 485 visa holders who lost time staying in Australia due to the Covid 19 restrictions. This means that to be eligible for this stream, you must: 

  • Hold a 485 visa as a main holder, or  
  • Have held a 485 visa as main holder and now  holding a substantive visa or bridging visa A or B.   
  • Your visa must be in effect on or after 1 Feb 2020 and granted before 15 December 2021 

Your stay during the Covid travel restriction: This stream is available for you if 

  • You were inside Australia when your original 485 visa was granted, then you have been outside Australia between 1 Feb 20020 and 12 Dec 2021, while holding this visa. 
  • You were outside Australia when your original 485 visa was granted, you came to Australia on this visa, and departed the country also on this visa before 15 Dec 2021. 

The application date: You must apply for this stream before 1 Jan 2027. 

Health Insurance: You and your family members must have health insurance to cover your healthcare costs while you are in Australia.  

Character requirements: You must meet the health requirements to be eligible for this visa. 

No debt to the Australia Government: If you or your family member have a debt to the Australian Government, you need to pay back or arranged to pay back that debt. 

Not sure if you are eligible for study in Australia and eligible for a student visa? Contact our team on 07 3003 1899 today for free eligible check.  

Not sure if you are eligible for study in Australia and eligible for a student visa? Contact our team on 07 3003 1899 today for free eligible check.  

How to apply for a Graduate Visa 485 

 

Step 1: Prepare the required documentation

You need to gather all required documents. The required documents may vary, depending on your stream that you are applying for. However, below is general documentation for a graduate visa 485.  

  • Identity Document: A copy of the identification page of your passport. You can also attach the national identity card if you have one.  
  • Qualification documents: A copy of your degree, completion letter and academic transcript 
  • Skill assessment documents: This document is required if you are applying for Graduate Work Stream only.  
  • Residence Documents: This document is required if you are applying for a Second Post Study Work Stream only. You need to prove that you have lived in the regional area for at least 2 years right before you lodge your application. If you study/work in the regional area while you held the first post-study work visa stream, you may wish to attach the evidence to prove it.  
  • AFP: Australian police check 
  • Health Insurance Documents: A copy of your Private Health Insurance Certificate 
  • English Proficiency: You must have IELTS overall 6.5 with no band score under 5.5 in the last 1 year before you lodge your visa application. 
  • Health and Character Documents: This may include medical examinations and police clearances. 

Step 2: Apply online

You must apply online via ImmiAccount on the Australian Department of Home Affairs website. 

  • Create or Log in to your ImmiAccount  
  • Fill out the application form accurately.  
  • Attach the required documents to your online application. 
  • Pay the application fee. 

Step 3: Wait for the visa outcome

  • Depending on your nationality and personal circumstances, you may need to provide biometrics as part of the application process.  
  • The Department of Home Affairs also may require you to complete health examinations after you lodge your visa application.  
  • If your visa is approved, you will receive a visa grant notification with details of your visa grant number, the expiry dates and visa conditions. 

Need help with the visa application? Contact our experienced Migration Agents today!  

How much does it cost to apply for a 485 visa 

  Graduate Work Stream   Post Study Work Stream   Second Post Study Work Stream   Replacement Stream  
Primary Applicant   1,895  1,895  745  1,895 
Additional Applicant 18+  950  950  375  950 
Additional Applicant Under 18   475  475  190  475 

How to include family member on a 485 Visa 

 

You can include your family members in your primary application. Alternatively, you can add them to your application after you lodge the application but before your visa is granted. For the visa purposes, the family members are defined as below:  

Partner 

The spouse or de-facto partner of the candidate could be the opposite or same sex. The partner must be 18 years of age or above. However, the candidates must prove their mutual commitment towards the relationship. The candidate and the partner should not live separately on a permanent basis.  

Children 

To include children in the 485-application form, the children could be the applicant’s own children or stepchildren. However, the children must: 

  • Be under 18 years of age 
  • Be more than 18 years but under 23 years of age and must be dependent on the applicants or their respective partners 
  • Be more than 23 years of age, but dependent on their parents due to some physical or cognitive disability. 
  • Meet the health requirements as set out by the Department of Home Affairs. 

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

 

How many streams does 485 have? How do you know which one is right for you?

The 485 visa is divided into two streams: Post-Study Work Stream and Graduate Work Stream. If you have completed a higher education degree in Australia (regardless of subject) and your first student visa was approved on or after 5 November 2011, you are eligible to apply for the Post-Study Work Stream. You may consider applying for the Graduate Work Stream if your qualifications are relevant to an occupation on Australia’s Skilled Occupations in Demand list.

What are the application qualifications for the 485 visa Graduate Work Stream?

Graduate Work Stream Qualifications:

  • Must nominate an occupation from the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL).
  • Must provide evidence of relevant vocational skills assessment.
  • Skills must be deemed suitable by a relevant assessment authority.
  • Must meet the Australian study requirement within the past six months, with qualifications closely related to the nominated occupation.

What are the application qualifications for the 485 visa Post Study Work Stream?

Post-Study Work Stream Qualifications:

  • Must have first student visa approved on or after November 5, 2011.
  • Must have completed at least two years of study in Australia at bachelor’s level or higher.
  • Must have completed a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree within the last six months.

Does the 485 visa extension policy still exist? Can people who graduate in mid-2024 apply?

The Australian government expects to cancel the extension policy by mid-2024. Graduates only can apply for a 2-3 year 485 work visa once the official cancellation policy starts. (More information can be checked at blog: 485 Visa Updates: What Graduates Need To Know)

Can I bring my partner or family members with me on a 485 visa? How to apply? When to apply?

Yes, the 485 visa allows you to bring family members, including a spouse or children. You can include information about family members when submitting your 485 visa application. You can also add spouses and children after the 485 visa is issued. For details, please ask SOL Migration’s registered migration agent.

What is the age limit for a 485 visa?

The current age limit for applying for the 485 visa is under 50 years old. However, the Australian government is already considering whether to adjust the age to 35 years old. It has not yet determined whether it will be implemented and the implementation date. For details, please refer to the latest information on the Department of Home Affairs official website. (More information can be checked at blog: 485 Visa Updates: What Graduates Need To Know)

What are the English restrictions for a 485 visa?

From March 23 2024, the required scores are an IELTS total of 6.5 (no band less than 5.5), PTE total of 57(listening 43/reading 48/speaking 42/writing 51), CAE total of 176 (no band less than 162), OET no less than B in any test component, or TOEFL iBT total of 83(listening 7/reading 8/speaking 16/writing 18). Exemptions may apply for passport holders from certain English-speaking countries. Hong Kong passport and BNO holders require an IELTS total of 6 (no band less than 5) or equivalent. (More information can be checked at blog: 485 Visa Updates: What Graduates Need To Know)

English Requirements for 485 Visa

Overall

Listening

Reading

Speaking

Writing

IELTS

6.5

5.5

5.5

5.5

5.5

PTE

57

43

48

42

51

CAE

176

162

162

162

162

OET

B

B

B

B

B

TOEFL iBT

83

7

8

16

18

English Requirements for 485 Visa for Hong Kong and British National (Overseas) Passport Holders

Overall

Listening

Reading

Speaking

Writing

IELTS

6

5

5

5

5

PTE

50

36

36

36

36

CAE

169

154

154

154

154

OET

B

B

B

B

B

TOEFL iBT

64

4

4

14

14

What health insurance do I need to buy for a 485 visa? How long will it take to buy?

Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) is acceptable if you hold a student visa when applying. Otherwise, purchase OVHC health insurance, valid for the duration of your 485 visa.

What is the Police check for a 485 visa?

An Australian Federal Police (AFP) police check is required. Apply for this before submitting your 485 visa application. Receiving results after application submission is acceptable, provided the application for the police check was made beforehand.

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