What type of visa do I need to work in Australia if I’m an actor, DJ, musician, dancer, production crew or other creative?
Visas are often the last thing that people think about however without the visa, there is no talent and if no talent, there is no show!
In order to work in Australia in the entertainment or creative industries, you must obtain an entertainment visa. In some circumstances, a different type of visa may be more appropriate and we can advise you on the best visa is to suit your needs. We also assist Australian artists who need visas to travel overseas.
Without the right type of visa, you will not be permitted to work or be paid in Australia. Travelling to Australia under the wrong visa can attract heavy penalties and risk of deportation or rejection, so it’s important to obtain professional legal advice. The Australian government do not provide refunds for unsuccessful applications, so it’s important you obtain the proper advice and to avoid wasting your money.
The visa process is complex and time consuming however we are here to help, so you can get back to creating! We understand the speed in which the entertainment industry operates and we will work round the clock to get you into Australia legally and on time for your project.
Here’s a few tips on a few things you will need to get started…
What’s the first step?
Speak to our friendly lawyers to find out which visa is most appropriate to your project’s needs. Initial consultations are free-of-charge.
What documents do I need for an entertainment visa?
Once you have obtained an entertainment job offer in Australia, you will need to engage our immigration lawyers to help you. Some of the information and documents we would ask you to provide, include:
- Employment contract or Letter of Intent (if you do not have these we can liase with your Employer and draft an employment agreement that meets up to date immigration laws);
- Certified passport (we can certify your documents for you);
- Certified Birth Certificates, Driver’s license or Identity Card;
- Your CV;
- Police Checks (we can help you organise these in your home country);
- Pass the Government Benefits Test (we will help you with this so don’t fret!)
- Health Insurance (we can assist you in organising this if you don’t have a policy);
- Pass the Character and Health tests (we can organise the tests for you and if you have character or health issues, we can assist you in getting around any obstacles to help you obtain a visa);
COMMONLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Will I need a Sponsor?
In order to obtain an entertainment visa you will also need a valid Australian Sponsor. We can help your Sponsor become valid or organise sponsorship for you.
Who can my Sponsor be?
Your Sponsor must be an Australian citizen, permanent resident or Australian company.
We need visas urgently to play at a music gig in Australia, how long does it take to organise?
Allow at least 3-4 weeks to obtain the visa. Whilst we can do it quicker for you if it’s really urgent, it’s best to allow time in case we need to iron out any problems for your band. We advise not booking any travel until you have received your visa grant. We understand how quickly the entertainment world operates and will work round the clock to get your visas sorted so you can get into the country pronto and play at that gig! We’d love to come and watch you too!
If we need multiple entertainment visas for our music band to play at a festival, can you provide a fixed fee for a group of artists to save on cost?
Yes, we provide fixed fees to assist large groups.
I’ve scored a part in a film. Do I need to be inside or outside Australia when applying for an entertainment visa?
Fortunately, you can be in or outside of Australia when you are applying for this visa. Not all visas have this luxury. If you need a visa to act in a different country (other than Australia). we can also organise this for you.
I have expensive camera equipment I need to get into Australia. Can you assist?
Yes, we can assist with this to make sure your camera equipment arrives safely and quickly.
Do I need to get my identity documents translated?
Yes, you do. Our translators can organise that for you.
Do you draft employment contracts?
Yes, we have a team of specialist employment and immigration lawyers to assist you.
I wish to bring some entertainers into Australia for an event. How do I sponsor them?
Firstly, you will need to apply to become an entertainment sponsor, if you are not already one. We can organise that for you quickly.
I am working as production crew and need a visa. Can my partner travel with me?
Yes, your partner can travel with you on your visa. We can advise you as to whether an entertainment or other type of visa is more appropriate for you.
I’m working on my film and want my assistant to travel with me. What type of visa do they need?
Your assistant will also need an entertainment visa. We can attach them to your visa, no problem.
Do you provide fixed fees?
Yes we do. We don’t have hidden costs like some other firms and will provide you with a fixed fee so you don’t have the stress of large legal bills. We are more interested in getting you into the country to perform, so Australia can enjoy your talent!
Do I need to lodge my tax in Australia if I work on an Australian project?
Our friendly tax lawyers can advise you on this point, so feel free to ask.
I’m a DJ. Can I do other work or play other gigs on my entertainment visa?
No, you must only do the work for the project you are working on. If you have other work, please let us know and we can organise that for you.
I’m a journalist and travelling with a film crew. Do I need an entertainment visa?
You will require a different type of visa and we can advise and organise that for you.
I’m a sportsperson, do I need an entertainment visa?
We can give you advise on the right type of visa to meet your sporting needs. Please contact us to discuss further.
I need an entertainment visa for another country other than Australia. Can you assist?
Yes, we can. There are different requirements in different countries so email or call us and we can advise you further and help you prepare your visa.
Do you do other types of visas other than Australian entertainment visas?
Yes, we provide advice and prepare visas of all types to permit you to live, work, study or travel in Australia. We also provide advice on international visas.
*Please note, laws change weekly. This information is at today’s date.
There are a lot of requirements for entertainment visas (too much to discuss in one blog!), however this information will get you started. We can assist you with the rest of the documentation to avoid you getting a headache and get you back to doing what you do best – being an artist!
If you have any questions, feel free to ask our friendly Immigration Lawyer and Registered Migration Agent, Rebekah O’Sullivan, who specialises in visas for the entertainment industry. Rebekah has represented clients such as MTV, Chris Hemsworth, Jason Derulo, Liam Payne;clients for the Commonwealth Games; actors; film crews; media; music festivals and events…and many more! As a former artist, she is well-versed in the needs of the entertainment industry. She is the “go to” person when it comes to getting talent into the country on time, efficiently, urgently and legally!
Rebekah maybe contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org