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Student Visa Subclass 500 – Know its Working Conditions Here

by Melanie Peterson

Student visas are created to allow international students to complete their studies in Australia. A Student Visa Subclass 500 can be granted to allow students to study in different sectors like research studies, higher education, vocational education, school studies, foundation studies and English language courses.

Student Visa Subclass 500 - Know its Working Conditions Here

Since June 2017, all student visas have been issued under Subclass 500. but, you may see older student visas issued under subclasses 570, 571, 572, 573, 574 and 575. The work rights are similar to that of Subclass 500 for these older visas.

What Can You Do with Student Visas?

Student visas can help international students to complete their studies in Australia, and a student visa can be granted to allow a student to study in different sectors such as:

  • Higher education – Under this visa, you can opt for higher education at private colleges or universities that include Graduate Diplomas, Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees.
  • Research studies – They can be undertaken at universities, for instance, PhD and Masters by Research
  • English language courses
  • Vocational education
  • School studies
  • Foundation studies

How Many Student Visa Holders Are There in Australia?

On 30 June 2019, there were around 553,139 student visa holders in Australia, but the numbers might have gone up. This includes both the primary and secondary visa holders.

How Long Does a Student Visa Last?

A Visa Subclass 500will be valid for the entire duration of the student’s studies in Australia. They can generally arrive in Australia a few months before their studies are complete and remain in Australia for some months before completion of their studies.

In the case of a student visa, if the student completes their course in December, the visa will be valid till March of the next year. You can contact a visa agent in Adelaide to know more about the duration of the visa.

Work Rights for the Primary Visa Holder

In most cases, the main student visa holders are subjected to condition 8105. This specific condition allows a student to work for around 40 hours every fortnight during the semester and full time during semester break.

After completing studies, the student can work full time, and the same case is between the semesters. But if you are studying for a master’s by Research or a PhD, you can work for unlimited hours.

As per the 8105 conditions, these are the following recommendations from the Department of Home Affairs, “If you are an employer looking to hire a student visa holder, you need to request evidence that they have completed their courses, such as a confirmation, enrolment or a letter from the specific education provider.”

Work Rights for the Secondary Visa Holder as Per the Condition 8104

The spouses and children of the main Subclass 500 Student Visa holders can work for around 40 hours every fortnight under the 8104 condition. The work rights for the secondary visa holder will come into effect when the main applicant has finished their studies.

The dependent can only work for 40 hours every fortnight, whether it’s during a semester or a semester break. If the main applicant is studying for a master’s or Phd, the dependent can work full time.

As per the 8104 conditions, these are the following recommendations from the Department of Home Affairs:

“Employers who seek to hire the family member of a primary student visa holder are advised to request evidence:
of the relationship (such as visa grant letters, marriage or birth certificates) and

The primary student visa holder has completed their courses, such as a Confirmation of Enrolment or a letter from the specific education provider”.

Risks of Cancellation

Student Visa 500 are often cancelled, and some of the reasons behind the cancellation can be:

  • Not attending classes
  • Changing to an ineligible course
  • Completing the course early
  • Working in breach of visa conditions

Nearly 18,000 Subclass 500 student visas were cancelled in Australia in 2019. Unless the employers check visa status regularly, they will not know that a student’s visa has been revoked. A migration agent can ensure that there are no mistakes while they fill up the application or to suggest to you what not to do when applying for the visa.

Further Visa Options for Student Visa Holders

Many students look to remain in Australia after completing their courses or to change their respective visas during their studies.

Some of the examples of visas Students can apply for after being in Australia for some time are as follows:

  • Graduate Temporary Subclass 485 visas
  • General Skilled Migration
  • Working Holiday Visas
  • Occupational Trainee Visas
  • Employer-sponsored (457 or TSS visa)
  • Partner Visas
  • Further student visas

Compared to Visa 500, these visas may not have work rights that can provide benefits similar to the original visa held by the employer. Unless the visa status is checked regularly, employers do not pick up the issues.

A good example is when a student works casually for an employer while under a student visa. If they change their visas into another 457 or a TSS visa with a different employer, they cannot work for the first employer, which will breach the visa conditions.

Processing Time for the Student Subclass 500 Visa

The Student Visa 500 Processing Time may keep on changing depending on the sector you are applying in. But the general processing time for the student 500 visa is:

Higher education sector

75% of the applications get processed under 29 days, while 90% of them get it done under 42 days.

Vocational education and training sector

75% of the applications are processed in 43 days, and about 90% take 77 days to process.

Final Words

Student visa holders comprise a large and skilled workforce that can attract employers. Student visa holders are usually subjected to work restrictions but are at a higher risk of getting their visas cancelled.

This is why its important to contact renowned adelaide migration agency so you understand more about the 500 visas to ensure that the student visa is not cancelled. They will ensure that your visa is not cancelled and can let you know everything regarding the student visa.

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