Due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022, the Australian government is prioritizing all visa applications made by Ukrainians personally affected by the war. Every day since the invasion began in February, Australia is issuing new visas to Ukrainians. Thousands of Ukrainians have already arrived in Australia since the Russian invasion began.

The most common visa that the Australian government is issuing to Ukrainians due to the crisis is called the Temporary Humanitarian Concern (THC) visa (visa subclass 786). This visa will be valid for three years and will allow Ukrainians to work, study and access medical care across Australia.

While the THC visa is the focus of this article, it is important to note that the Australian government is also prioritizing any and all other visa applications made by Ukrainian nationals interested in moving to Australia due to the Russian invasion.

The THC visa program to Australia is an exceptional immigration program because it is free, fast, and eliminates many of the normal visa requirements.

Requirements for the Temporary Humanitarian Concern Visa (Subclass 786):

Covid Vaccination Adult applicants must be fully vaccinated, unless medically exempt. Children under the age of 12 do not need to be vaccinated.
Citizenship Applicants must be citizens of Ukraine.
Previous Visa Requirement In order to get the THC visa (subclass 786), applicants must first have the Humanitarian Stay Temporary (HST) Visa (subclass 449). Both the HST and the THC visa processes are outlined in this article.

The THC visa program will only allow Ukrainians to stay in Australia for 3 years, with the possible option to extend the visa even further if needed. Additionally, Ukrainians may have the option to apply for additional visas which can allow for permanent residence later on. The THC visa and the HST visa are not competitive.

Process for Applying for the Temporary Humanitarian Concern Visa (Subclass 786):

Step 1 – Accept the Online Offer from the Australian Government: Before applying for the THC visa or the HST visa, an applicant must accept an online offer by the Australian government. This offer is effectively a terms and conditions sheet where the applicant submits information about themselves and their profile. Only Ukrainian citizens can accept this offer.

Step 2 – Apply for HST Visa Subclass 449: Once an applicant has completed the online form for acceptance, the Australian government will manually conduct a security check on the applicant. After this security check is complete and satisfactory to the Australian government, a temporary visa called the Humanitarian Stay Temporary visa (HST) will be issued via email to the applicant.

Step 3 – Apply for THC Visa Subclass 786: Once the applicant gets the HST visa, the applicant will be given a letter that will inform them if more information is needed to apply for the THC visa, such as health records and police records. Once this additional information is provided, if applicable, then the Australian government will issue a THC visa to the applicant via email. It is possible that no additional information will be requested by the Australian government and so the THC visa can be issued very quickly after the HST visa.

Step 4 -Receive the Visa and Move to Australia: Once the applicant has be granted the THC visa, they can begin their journey to start life again in Australia. The applicant will receive a visa grant number, the date the visa expires and the visa conditions. These conditions will relate to the applicant’s obligations and rights as a visa holder. The visa will be digitally linked to the applicant’s passport. These obligations will involve complying with laws of Australia and the rights will include medical care, free English classes, and full working and schooling rights.

Disclaimer: This information is provided for informational purposes only and is not legal advice. The information and facts referred to herein may be amended, removed or otherwise changed by the applicable government authority. As such, the information contained herein is provided with no guarantees of completeness, accuracy, usefulness or timeliness.

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