It is very important for international students in Australia to abide by their visa conditions or their visa can be cancelled, or future visa applications can be refused.
So, a subclass 500 student visa holder in Australia needs to understand how many hours they are allowed to work in a fortnight during their studies to avoid any breach of their student visa conditions.
When a subclass 500 student visa is granted to an applicant, it has 2 work related conditions attached. Let’s look at these work-related Subclass 500 student visa conditions:
Primary Applicants of Subclass 500 student visa in Australia: Condition 8105
Secondary Applicants of Subclass 500 student visa in Australia: Condition 8104
1) Condition 8105:
A primary applicant of a student visa in Australia is imposed with a mandatory 8105 visa condition.
According to condition 8105, an international student in Australia who is a holder of subclass 500 student visa should not engage in any work in Australia before the commencement of his or her study.
Since January 2022, international students on a sub class 500 student visa were being allowed to start work before the commencement of their study. This was due to acute shortage of labour. These provisions and relaxation are valid until 30th June 2023.
Condition 8105 also states that a holder of the Australian student visa is not permitted to work for more than 40 hours a fortnight. A fortnight is assumed to be starting on a Monday.
From January 2022 until 30th June 2023 all Australian student visa holders were allowed to work without any restrictions to the number of hours they could work.
While these unlimited work rights for student visa subclass 500 holders in Australia will cease on 30th June 2023, the Australian government has decided to permanently increase the hours from 40 hours to 48 hours a fortnight an international student could work in Australia.
Students who commence their master’s degree by Research or Doctoral degree will still be able to work unlimited number of hours even after 30th June 2023 but they must not work before the commencement of their study session after 30th June 2023.
2) Condition 8104:
A secondary applicant such as a spouse on a subclass 500 student visa is imposed with a mandatory 8104 visa condition.
This second work related visa condition states that a secondary applicant on an Australian subclass 500 student visa is not allowed to work for more than 40 hours a fortnight.
From January 2022 until 30th June 2023 all secondary applicants of an Australian student visa were allowed to work without unlimited hours.
While these unlimited work rights for student visa subclass 500 holders (Secondary Applicants) in Australia will cease on 30th June 2023, the Australian government has decided to permanently increase the hours from 40 hours to 48 hours a fortnight an international student could work in Australia.
Students and their secondary applicants who commence their master’s degree by Research or Doctoral degree will still be able to work unlimited number of hours even after 30th June 2023, but they must not work before the commencement of their study session after 30th June 2023.
SOME VERY IMPORTANT FACTS TO KEEP IN MIND REGARDING WORK RIGHTS FOR A HOLDER OF SUBCLASS 500 STUENT VISA
- When a course is not in session the student visa holder can work unlimited hours. So, during school holidays student holders and their secondary applicants can work unlimited hours.
When is a course considered out of session:
- during scheduled course breaks.
- if the course has been deferred or suspended in line with Standard 9 of the National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students.
- if a student has completed their course as scheduled (as per dates listed on their CoE) and still holds a valid Student visa.
- if a student’s enrolment has been cancelled due to the default of their education provider, until they secure alternative enrolment and commence the course.
- If a student commences an ELICOS course they and their dependents will only be able to work for 48 hours a fortnight until they commence their Masters degree by research or a Doctorate degree.
- How are 48 hours a fortnight calculated.
EXAMPLE: Example is assumed for scenarios after 30th June 2023.
Week 1: 25 hours
Week 2: 23 hours
Week 3: 26 hours
Week 4: 22 hours
For first 2 weeks (Week 1 and Week 2) the total hours for the fortnight are 48 hours. So, it is within the prescribed 48 hours a fortnight work limit.
For Week 3 and 4 the total for the fortnight is 48 hours. So, it is within the prescribed 48 hours a fortnight work limit.
But the problem lies in Week 2 and Week 3. In these 2 weeks the student visa holder worked 49 hours. This a breach of visa condition 8105 in case of the primary applicant and breach of 8104 visa condition in case of a secondary applicant of a subclass 500 student visa. This is because they have worked for 49 hours which is 1 hour more than the prescribed limit of 48 hours a fortnight allowed to student visa holders and their dependents.
It is a great opportunity for students across the world to come to Australia for study since the increased limit of 8 hours a fortnight represents 20% increase in work rights for subclass 500 student visa holders in Australia.
Disclaimer: The above information is not tailored to personal circumstances.
For information relevant to personal circumstances, please book an
appointment with Oracle Immigration Consultant’s expert migration agents in
For any inquiries, please contact us at +61 430812158. We are premier Immigration agency and consultancy in Melbourne (Bundoora and Geelong).