COVID 19  impact

ACT 491/190 Nominations COVID-19 impact

News Update! - March 2020

The following information has been provided by the ACT Government.

All applicants for ACT 491 / 190 nomination must meet the eligibility criteria at date of Matrix submission. However, applicants impacted by COVID-19 can request a waiver of the ‘continuous employment’ eligibility criteria in the following circumstances:

TRAVEL BAN

  • Applicants whose return to Canberra is delayed due to the COVID-19 travel ban can request a waiver of the continuous employment criteria. 
  • A waiver request should include supporting documentation to evidence the impact of the delayed return (e.g. evidence of cancelled flights, employer agreement to accept the extended absence as unpaid leave, etc.).
  • Applicants will meet the ACT ’continuous residence’ eligibility criteria (the period of time spent overseas due to the travel ban will be ignored).
  • Applicants must still meet the 3 months employment criteria (either before and / or after their return to Canberra) at the date of Matrix submission.
    Example: A 491 applicant worked for 9 weeks in Canberra and went back to China for 2 weeks on paid annual leave. 
  • Due to the travel ban, they are forced to take unpaid leave before returning to Canberra and resuming employment. They can submit a 491 Matrix after working another two weeks on their return to Canberra: 9 weeks work prior to departure + 2 weeks paid leave while overseas + 2 weeks work on their return to Canberra = 13 weeks continuous employment (the period of unpaid leave will be ignored).
Travel Ban

14 DAY SELF-ISOLATION REQUIREMENT

  • Applicants who are required to self- isolate for 14 days due to COVID -19 can request a waiver of the continuous employment criteria. 
  • A waiver request must include evidence of the need to self- isolate i.e. return date to Australia; close contact etc.
  • Applicants must still meet the 3/6 months employment criteria (either before and / or after the self-isolation period) at the date of Matrix submission.
Isolation

ACT BUSINESS CLOSURE

  • Applicants who are required to take unpaid leave as a result of an ACT business closing due to COVID -19 can request a waiver of the continuous employment criteria. 
  • A waiver request must include evidence from the employer regarding the business closure.
  • Applicants must still meet the 3/6 months employment criteria (either before and / or after the business closure) at the date of Matrix submission. 
  • Paid leave can be counted towards the period of claimed employment.
  • Applicants can also change employers if a business closes permanently or decides not to re-employ the applicant. 
  • Example: A 491 applicant worked for 7 weeks in Canberra. Due to the ACT business closure, they are forced to take 4 weeks unpaid leave before resuming employment. They can submit a 491 Matrix after working another six weeks on their return: 7 weeks work prior to closure + 6 weeks work on return = 13 weeks continuous employment (the period of unpaid leave will be ignored).
Bussines closure

Request for waiver

If you are invited to apply for ACT 491 / 190 nomination, any request for a COVID -19 waiver must be in writing, attached to the application and evidenced by supporting documentation.
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