Can I Work While Waiting for an 820 Visa?

updated on 07 May 2024

If you've applied for a Partner Visa (Subclass 820) in Australia, you might wonder about your rights to work while your application is being processed. The waiting period can be uncertain, but understanding your work rights during this period can help you plan your life in Australia more effectively. This article explores whether you can work while waiting for your Subclass 820 visa to be granted and what conditions apply.

Bridging Visas: Your Gateway to Work Rights

When you apply for a Subclass 820 visa from within Australia, you are likely to be granted a Bridging Visa A (BVA) if your current visa expires before a decision is made on your partner visa application. The BVA is designed to legally allow you to stay in Australia while your visa application is under review. One of the critical aspects of the BVA is that it typically grants you the right to work in Australia, but the specific work rights can vary based on individual circumstances and the conditions of any visa previously held.

Please be extremely cautious here, as your previous visa will affect the work rights that you have. So, for example, if you have a student visa that is valid for several more years, you will not have automatic work rights.  

Work Rights on a Bridging Visa A (BVA)

  • Unrestricted Work Rights: Generally, the BVA associated with a Subclass 820 visa application comes with unrestricted work rights. This means you can work in any occupation, for any employer, and for as many hours as you wish. This provision aims to support applicants financially and help them contribute to the Australian community while they await the outcome of their visa application.
  • Conditions May Apply: In some cases, the BVA may have conditions attached, including restrictions on work. These conditions depend on the visa you held before applying for the Subclass 820 visa and any conditions that were attached to that visa. However, it's relatively rare for work restrictions to be placed on a BVA for partner visa applicants.

Important Considerations

  • Staying Informed: It's crucial to check the specific conditions of your Bridging Visa A. You can do this by looking at your visa grant notice or checking your visa status and conditions online through the Department of Home Affairs' VEVO system.
  • Health Insurance: While you have the right to work, your access to Medicare or public health insurance may vary. It's advisable to arrange for adequate health insurance to cover any medical needs during this period.
  • Visa Processing Times: The processing times for Subclass 820 visas can be lengthy. Having the ability to work during this time not only helps you support yourself but also allows you to gain valuable Australian work experience.


In summary, most applicants for a Partner Visa (Subclass 820) will have the right to work in Australia while waiting for their visa to be processed, thanks to the Bridging Visa A. This provision ensures that applicants can remain financially independent and contribute to the Australian economy during the waiting period. However, always confirm the specific conditions of your bridging visa and remain compliant with Australian visa laws and regulations. 

Please contact us to confirm your specific visa history to determine if you are able to have full work rights.

About Rocket & Ash Immigration Law

At Rocket & Ash Immigration Law, we specialise in helping partners, graduates, and professionals navigate the complexities of Australian immigration law. Our expertise in visa applications ensures that you receive tailored advice and support throughout your immigration journey.

If you require assistance with your Subclass 820 partner visa application or have any other immigration-related queries, our experienced team can help.

Please book a free 15-minute discussion with our team if you have further questions.

Written by Ines Jusufspahic, LPN: 5511366

This article does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney-client relationship. For up-to-date information, please consult an immigration professional.

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