Temporary Graduate Visa (Subclass 485)

You’re graduating and have decided your future is in Australia. It’s time to apply for your Temporary Graduate Visa (Subclass 485). The 485 visa has two streams – post study work and graduate work stream.


Learn more: Temporary Graduate Visa Streams

Learn more: Australian study requirement

Find: The ultimate guide to occupation lists


Key points for graduate work stream

If you are applying for the graduate work stream, you will need a skills assessment for the occupation that you have nominated. Your nominated occupation needs to be closely related to your study. If you have not already gotten a positive skills assessment, you will need to at least provide evidence of having applied to the relevant assessing body at the time of application.


Key points for post study work stream

Remember that a requirement to be on this stream is that your very first student visa must have been applied for and granted after 5 November 2011. Whilst no skills assessment is required as there is no need to nominate an occupation, the applicant must have an eligible qualification.

Eligible qualifications:

  • Bachelor
  • Bachelor with Honours
  • Masters by Coursework
  • Masters (extended)
  • Masters by Research and/or
  • Doctoral degree



It is very important to understand which stream you belong to and apply on the correct stream. With a turnaround time of roughly 4 months for a graduate work stream application and around 86 days for a post study work stream visa, applying on the wrong stream will waste you a considerable amount of valuable time and money.

  • Can only apply after your course completion date
  • Know the date you are last eligible to apply for a 485 visa
  • Be sure that you are know which stream you have to apply to
  • Know what documents are required for your stream and prepared them in advance


Course completion date

It is critical that you do not apply for your 485 visa before your course completion date. Be sure to check with your education provider on what date this is as it may not fall on the last day of the academic year or last exam (see your completion letter).


Date last eligible

You must be on your student visa, another substantive visa or bridging visa A and B at the time of application. You are eligible to apply for a 485 visa up to 6 months after the end of your student visa so it is important to know when your student visa will/has expired. You must also apply within 6 months of your course completion date.


Documents required on application

Both streams:

  • English test results *
  • Australian police clearance certificate *
  • Qualification certificates and proof of study
  • Health insurance *
  • Medical

Graduate work stream:

  • Skills assessment *

The above documents that have an * must be provided at the time of application. Failure to do so may result in the refusal of your visa. You may provide evidence of having applied for your Australian police clearance certificate and skills assessment, if you are short of time and must quickly apply.

Qualification related documents do not need to provided at the time of application, but it must be stressed that you must be sure to apply for the 485 visa only after the official completion date as provided by education institute. Should you apply for your 485 visa and later provide a completion letter from the education institute that quotes that your completion date occurred after you lodged your application, your application may be refused.


Getting your documents right

English results

English results must be from one of the 5 approved providers. The test results must have been obtained no more than 3 years before the time of application. If your country of passport is United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, the United States or the Republic of Ireland, you will not need to provide test results.

Minimum English test scores:







PTE: Academic
CAE: Advanced

Learn more: English proficiency tests


Australian police clearance certificate

You will need an Australian Federal Police (AFP) certificate. Failing to submit an AFP at the time of application or evidence for having applied for one would result in your application being refused. Evidence includes official receipts and documents from the AFP that clearly state you have applied for a police check.

Apply: AFP online application


Qualifications and proof of study

This includes your certificate, academic transcript and an official completion letter from your education provider that states the start and end dates of your study and when course requirements were met.


Health insurance

You must have health insurance at the time of application and it must cover you for your period of stay in Australia. If you are covered by Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) at the time of application and you are on a study visa, you are still eligible to apply. If however you are no longer on a student visa, OSHC is not acceptable. You will need to produce evidence that you are enrolled with adequate health insurance at the time of application and that it will be maintained through the course of your stay in Australia.

If you are a student who will be applying for the post study work stream and your occupation would not be in the MLTSSL, the recent changes to the occupation lists and employer sponsored visas may affect your plans after your graduate visa. Think about talking to an experienced agent about your options early.

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