There are many important issues associated with student visas that you might not be aware of. In this article, Gerald Santucci, Director and head of our Business Law team and registered migration agent, explains what these are.

Student visa classes

There are 2 subclasses of student visas: the student visa and the student guardian visa. Previously, there were more than 8 different student visa subclasses that related to the various education sectors and the myriad of regulatory provisions.
Student guardian visa
The student guardian visa is for students who aren’t yet 18 (usually the case for school enrolments). The student guardian wanting to come to Australia with the student must provide appropriate accommodation and support for the student. They must also provide for the general welfare of the student. Usually, the applicant is a parent, a person who has custody of that student, or an authorised relative and has turned 21. This could be, for example, an aunt or uncle who is either an Australian citizen or permanent resident.

Student visa

Before approving a student visa, the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) will look at the student’s circumstances, the circumstances in their home country and their immigration history. For cases involving minors, DHA will also assess the parent’s or authorised guardian’s intentions.
DHA may restrict enter from countries where DHA believes the student will overstay.

Certificates of enrolment

A school student must already be enrolled in a course of study. This means a Certificate of Enrolment (CoE) has been issued by an institution on the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS). Not all Canberra independent schools are on the register.

Health insurance and funds

Students, their guardians and their dependants must have adequate health insurance. They must also have access to funds to meet their general maintenance, educational, travel and living expenses whilst in Australia.

Age restrictions

School students must be at least 6 years old at the time of application. There are also certain age barriers for students undertaking Year 9–12 studies.

How can Snedden Hall & Gallop Lawyers assist you?

The issues described above are just some of those surrounding student visas. The DHA will always look very closely at applications for student visas, especially those from Third World countries. This happens even when the applicant can clearly meet their costs and expenses while they are in Australia. The DHA decision maker will heavily scrutinise such applications so that they can satisfy themselves that the applicant has sufficient ties to their home country that will prevent them from overstaying the visa validity period.
Student visas lodged offshore are not subject to appeal rights if rejected. For this reason, it is worthwhile engaging one of our experienced Migration Lawyers – Gerald Santucci, Gillian Hunter or Dominic Cookman – to assist with the visa application. This will ensure that you put forward to the DHA the best possible case for the grant of the student visa. You can contact us on 02 6285 8000 or by email.