Being a genuine temporary entrant (GTE) for any temporary visa is an important requirement and no less so when applying for your Student visa (subclass 500).
The above article covers what the Department of Home Affairs (DOHA) factors in when assessing if you meet the GTE requirements for your Student 500 visa application, but be aware that the GTE requirement doesn’t end there. Throughout the period that you are a holder of a Student 500 visa, you will be continued to be assessed on if you are a genuine student. If you are found to be a non genuine student, you would possibly find yourself facing the cancellation of your student visa. It is our hope that in helping our readers who will be on a student visa or currently hold one understand this critical criteria, they will avoid inadvertently making mistakes that would land them in an unpleasant situation.
Non genuine student
A student visa holder may be considered a non genuine student if it appears that their primary intention is not, or not likely to be, to undertake study. The following are some situations in which the DOHA is likely to consider one a non genuine student:
- There is evidence that the student visa holder is not attending their course (for example, they are located working in another State/Territory while their course is in session) even if they are complying with condition 8202 (see below).
- The student visa holder is enrolled but has large periods without actual study (for example, if they are enrolled in a future course but have an unreasonable period without actual study).
- The student visa holder is unaware of the details of their course or the location of their education provider.
- The student visa holder has arranged for another person to attend many classes or exams on their behalf.
- The student visa holder admits at interview that the primary purpose of their travel to, or stay in, Australia is to work.
- There is evidence that the student visa holder has been in Australia for a significant period of time but has not completed any course of study and is not demonstrating a pathway to an educational qualification or outcome.
- There is evidence that a deferral was granted by an education provider for non genuine reasons, such as the student claiming that a family member has taken ill or passes away, and this is proven to be false, or that the student was granted a deferral to leave Australia for personal reasons and never left.
- The student has been deferred or temporarily suspended from their course of study by the education provider due to the student’s misbehaviour.
- The student has been deferred or temporarily suspended from their course of study by the education provider for reasons that are not compassionate or compelling or beyond the student’s control, such as to allow them to work.
- The student has been deferred or temporarily suspended from their course of study by the education provider for legitimate reasons, such as a personal illness, and the student has recovered and is fully able to resume studies but has not done so.
- The student has requested deferral or temporary suspension of their course of study from their education provider granted based on fraudulent or misleading documents or evidence.
- There is evidence, such as a statement made by the visa holder, that the visa holder’s primary intention for travelling to Australia is for purposes other than study.
Condition 8202 is mandatory for all student visas:
- You must remain enrolled in a registered course (unless you are a Foreign Affairs of Defence sponsored student or secondary exchange student in which case you must maintain full-time enrolment in your course of study or training).
- You must maintain enrolment in a registered course that is the same level as, or at a higher level than, the registered course for which you were granted a visa.
- You must maintain satisfactory attendance in your course.
- You must maintain satisfactory course progress for each study period as required by your education provider.
Note: A registered course is one that is on the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS).
Conduct not contemplated by the visa
Conduct not contemplated by the visa refers generally to academic misconduct. Examples of this include and are not limited to:
- A student visa holder is found to be selling essays on campus.
- A student visa holder is found to be engaging in academic misconduct such as repeatedly cheating in exams .
- A student visa holder is found to be involved in serious plagiarism.
- A student visa holder is found to be receiving payment to attend classes or exams on another student’s behalf.
- A student visa holder is found to be using their provider’s resources for private or business purposes.
Of course, not being a genuine student is only one of the reasons for which a student visa holder may face cancellation of their student visa. Not adhering to the conditions on their visa naturally will endanger any visa holder’s visa, or engaging in criminal conduct and so forth. However we feel that it is important to cover how one might be taken to be a non genuine student; as you can see, some of the above situations can arise even when a student is genuinely in Australia to study and has no ulterior motive, but may perhaps an individual who is not very hardworking or trying to lubricate their academic life through selling essays or cheating.
When deferral or suspension of studies is acceptable
There will be situations in which one might find that they need to defer or temporarily suspend their studies and this is not considered unacceptable where compassionate or compelling reasons exist.
Compelling and compassionate circumstances are taken to be those that are beyond the control of the student and which impact upon the student’s course progress or wellbeing. Examples of such circumstances include and are not limited to:
- Serious illness or injury, where a medical certificate states that the student was unable to attend classes.
- Bereavement of close family members such as parents or grandparents (where possible a death certificate should be provided).
- Major political upheaval or natural disaster in the home country requiring emergency travel and this has impacted on the student’s studies.
- A traumatic experience, which could include:
- involvement in, or witnessing of a serious accident or
- witnessing or being the victim of a serious crime
and this has impacted on the student (these cases should be supported by police or psychologist’s reports).
- Where the education provider was unable to offer a pre-requisite unit.
- The inability to begin studying on the course commencement date due to delay in receiving a student visa.
In such situations the DOHA may request evidence from education providers. The DOHA would ask that education providers provide copies of the evidence provided by the student to support their request for deferral or temporary suspension.
Do you need help with your application for a student visa, or are have you been a little cheeky and have the DOHA on your back due to your conduct on your student visa? Perhaps you would like some advice in mapping out your pathway to permanent residency after your student visa concludes. Call +61 2 8054 2537, 0434 890 199 or book online today to speak to our migration specialists.