Info for International students affected by travel restrictions

As part of a global response to novel coronavirus (COVID-19), the Australian government has announced heightened travel restrictions.

Redfern Legal Centre acknowledges the distress that this may cause, particularly for international students studying at universities or colleges in NSW who may be unable to enter Australia to commence or recommence their studies.

RLC is committed to supporting international students in NSW who are directly or indirectly affected by these events. This includes students who need advice about enrolment, deferral of studies, and health and wellbeing.

International students in NSW affected by these issues (including people who are currently overseas) can obtain legal advice from RLC’s International student Legal Service NSW. 

Call us on 02 9698 7645, or make an enquiry using our free Check-In app.

Sean Stimson
International Student Legal Service NSW
Redfern Legal Centre

Are you a student affected by travel restrictions? 

  • Ask your education provider about special consideration if you need to defer your enrolment.
  • Check with your education provider about enrolment closure dates, and census dates (the last day you can remove yourself from a course of study).
  • Obtain a copy of any policies relevant to your situation from your education provider, from their website or by request.
  • Your education provider may also allow for late enrolment under special circumstances.
  • You may be able to defer your studies, depending on the availability of your subjects in those later terms.
  • Check with your education provider that there are no financial penalties for deferring your studies.
  • Ask your education provider if you are able to undertake the course of studies online.
  • Ask your education provider if you can take program leave, which might be granted for compassionate and compelling reasons.
  • If you take program leave for compassionate and compelling reasons, make sure that your Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) will remain active so there is no impact on your student visa. You can check your visa status through Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO).
  • Confirm any special arrangements you make with your education provider in writing.
  • If you are not happy with the way your education provider has treated you, provided you have completed at least six months of your course of studies, you are able to transfer to another education provider without penalty.
  • If you have questions about program leave, your CoE or your visa, contact Redfern Legal Centre for advice.

Health and wellbeing

As an international student, your Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) can be used to attend the doctor for any health reason.

If you use your OSHC for a coronavirus assessment, NSW Health will not charge you any out-of-pocket expenses (costs not covered by your OSHC).

If you do not have health insurance, you can still see a doctor for a coronavirus assessment free-of-charge.

See also

Coronavirus – what do I need to know? (factsheet)