“8504 The holder must enter Australia as the holder of the visa to which the condition applies before a date specified by the Minister.  This condition requires that an initial entry into Australia by each visa holder be made before the date specified in the “Visa Grant Notice” provided to you when your visa was granted.  Failure to comply with visa conditions can render a visa liable for cancellation under the Migration Act 1958 and visa holders are encouraged to make their first entry by the initial entry date.  General Skilled Migration; however; has no objection to visa holders travelling to Australia in breach of condition 8504 and will not seek to cancel a visa where the only reason for doing so would be the breach of this condition.”


On your Visa Grant Notice within your grant notification letter, you will see a list of information stating visa holder’s details, visa type and its associated conditions. Condition 8504 refers to “Must make first entry to Australia before”.

Once you have received your visa grant, you will need to travel to Australia before the date under “Must make first entry to Australia before” to validate your visa. You will not need to be settling in by this date. This applies only to the visa holder who was given this notice and usually the date cannot be extended. DIBP does have the power to cancel your visa if you do not comply with this initial entry date requirement so we recommend that you comply with the instruction.

The Procedures Advice Manual (PAM) states the following:


Breaching an entry-related visa condition does not in itself cause the visa to cease to be in effect.

The only circumstances that cause a visa to cease to be in effect are those set out in s82 of the Act and these circumstances do not include a breach of (or ‘failure to comply with’) an entry-related visa condition. Rather, breach of an entry-related visa condition renders the visa liable for cancellation (usually under s116(1)(b) of the Act). The cancellation powers can be used in respect of entry-related conditions if the migrant visa holder has not yet made their initial entry to Australia.

Cancellation powers are discretionary and would not generally be used if you can provide exceptional and compelling reasons for having breached the condition.

Examples of such conditions are:

  • a visa holder who could not enter by the initial entry date due to the sudden and serious illness of their sponsoring Australian partner or
  • a visa holder in a remote area unable to travel because of a natural disaster or
  • a visa holder is in the late stages of pregnancy and is unable to travel.

Simply, condition 8504 is not absolute, but if not complied with, may cause airport delays and at worse, visa cancellation.