Oops! Were you on a student visa and have now become an unlawful citizen in Australia? Don’t worry, this may still be fixed. You are able to lodge another Student visa (subclass 500) within 28 days. This time limited opportunity is a courtesy given to students who might have forgotten their visa has expired, but it is a once off deal. The law clearly explains that when this grace period has been used in one application, it cannot be used again.
This special 28 day one off grace deal is generally used for students who may have neglected to lodge their next student visa before their current one expires. The government is aware that a number of students get so busy with exams and school activities that having to renew their visa on time takes a back seat in priorities, or it just gets forgotten about.
There are a couple of other visas whose holders, if they become unlawful, get the same deal, but these are rarely used, such as those who previously held a Special Purpose Visa or a Diplomatic visa.
Of course if you do lodge your next student visa once your current one has expired, it may raise a few questions whether you are actually genuine student. Remember the GTE requirement can be difficult to meet.
Those who do not hold a valid visa and try and lodge a student visa without previously holding a student visa will get an invalid notification like this;
Your application is invalid because you did not meet Item 1222(4) of Schedule 1 to the Migration Regulations 1994. Item 1222(4) required you to hold a substantive temporary visa (other than a substantive temporary visa specified in an instrument under paragraph 1222(5) (c)) or to meet the following requirements:
(4) If the applicant is in Australia, the applicant must hold a substantive temporary visa (other than a substantive temporary visa specified in an instrument under paragraph (5)(c)), or must satisfy the following paragraphs:
(a) the applicant is not the holder of a substantive visa;
(b) the last substantive visa held by the applicant was:
(i) a student visa; or
(ii) a special purpose visa; or
(iii) a Diplomatic (Temporary) (Class TF) visa granted to the holder as the spouse or de facto partner, or a dependent relative, of a diplomatic or consular representative of a foreign country;
(c) the application is made within 28 days after:
(i) the day when that last substantive visa ceased to be in effect; or
(ii) if that last substantive visa was cancelled, and the Tribunal has made a decision to set aside and substitute the cancellation decision or the Minister’s decision not to revoke the cancellation—the later of:
(A) the day when that last substantive visa ceased to be in effect; and
(B) the day when the applicant is taken, under sections 368D and 379C of the Act, to have been notified of the Tribunal’s decision;
(d) the applicant has not previously been granted a visa based on an application made when the applicant did not hold a substantive visa.
These are the requirements for an applicant who is unlawful and wants to apply for a student visa. Know that all the requirements for a student visa must still be met.
Read: Student 500 Visa
So there you go, there is no need to despair if this is the first time you have forgot to lodge your student visa again, as long as it has not been more than 28 days! Of course this information is something you need to know before it is too late, so share this with anyone who is on a student visa.