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Changes in your situation

Getting a refund

​​​​​​​​​You pay a visa application charge (VAC), sponsorship/nomination fee or citizenship application fee so we can assess your application. These will not be refunded to you just because your application, nomination or sponsorship was refused or unsuccessful.

Generally, a VAC will only be refunded in certain circumstances, including if:

  • the application was unnecessary at the time it was made.
  • a mistake was made by the Department.
  • the applicant has died.
  • the sponsorship or nomination was not successful.
  • the application was made because of a mistake by the applicant and it is withdrawn in writing before a decision is made.

If you reverse or cancel a payment for your application:

  • your application might become invalid.
  • you might incur a debt to the Commonwealth. This may limit your ability to be granted another visa.

Refunds for the Skilling Australians Fund Levy are only possible for limited reasons. For more information check the Skilling Australians Fund Levy information at Cost of sponsoring (homeaffairs.gov.au)

There is no standard timeframe for processing a refund request. Each refund request must be individually assessed under the relevant legal authority or administrative rules.​​

Requesting a refund​

Fully vaccinated Student and Working Holiday Maker visa holders who travelled to Australia during a specified period can claim a refund for their visa application charge.

To be eligible claimants must have:

    • Held a Student Visa Subclass:
      • Vocational Education and Training Sector (subclass 572)
      • Higher Education Sector (subclass 573)
      • Postgraduate Research Sector (subclass 574)
      • Non-Award Sector (subclass 575) and
      • Travelled to Australia on that visa between 19 January 2022 and 19 March 2022.
    • Held a Working Holiday Maker Visa Subclass:
      • Working Holiday (subclass 417)
      • Work and Holiday (subclass 462) and
      • Travelled to Australia on that visa between 19 January 2022 and 19 April 2022.
    • Submitted the refund request by 31 December 2022.

If you have submitted a claim and have not received your refund, you may have received email correspondence from the Department. Please follow the instructions contained in any emails from the Department sent on either 17 or 20 February 2023 or 13 June 2023.

If you did not receive an email from the Department in February 2023, or have already responded to the email, we do not require any further action. The Department has all the information needed to progress your claim.

If the requested information is not provided by 30 June 2023 your claim will be closed. 

From 1 July 2023, if you would still like to claim a refund, please log on to the Visa Refund Portal​, using the log in details used when lodging your initial claim, and follow the instructions.  ​

There is no standard timeframe for processing a refund request. The time required to assess each claim will vary as we process each claim according to the visa holder’s individual circumstances.

You can check on the status of your claim by logging into your claim through the links supplied in the original lodgement.

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