Bridging visas and your application for skilled migration
Some of you have asked about leaving Australia while waiting for your skilled migration visa applications to be processed.
This information is in the acknowledgment letter that you received when you made your application. However, it’s worth noting again the best way to maintain your work and study entitlements, and to ensure you remain lawful.
If you hold a Bridging visa A
If you hold a Bridging Visa A and want to leave Australia, you should apply for a Bridging Visa B before you leave.
This is because a Bridging visa A (which you may hold as a result of applying onshore for another substantive visa) will cease when you leave Australia— even if you hold another visa that allows you to travel and return to Australia.
If you apply for and are granted a Bridging visa B, it won’t cease when you leave Australia. However, it will cease if you remain overseas beyond the travel period expiry date. When you are granted a Bridging visa B, it ceases your Bridging visa A.
Depending on your situation, a Bridging visa B can be granted with a travel period of up to 12 months, and will let you depart and re-enter Australia as often as you wish within that time.
You must return to Australia before your Bridging visa B ceases. If you don’t, you need to apply for and be granted another substantive visa to allow you to return to Australia. You would need to meet the separate requirements for this visa for it to be granted. If you can’t, you will have to remain outside of Australia until your skilled visa application is ready to be decided.
If you are notified that your skilled visa application is ready for grant while you are away, you’ll have at most 28 days to organise your return to Australia. So if your Bridging visa B has ceased and you don’t hold a substantive visa to return to Australia, contact your nearest overseas office for more information about your options.
Next time, we’ll be talking about why the Bridging visa B is great for people whose substantive visa is still valid.
Until then, be sure you can return—investigate the Bridging visa B before you leave.
More information about bridging visas in relation to general skilled migration applications, including how to apply, is on our website .