Important changes to the student visa programme – from 1 July 2016, http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Stud/changes-student-visa

Important changes to the student visa programme – from 1 July 2016, http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Stud/changes-student-visa

Important changes to the student visa programme – from 1 July 2016

http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Stud/changes-student-visa

New student visa applicants

From 1 July 2016, there will be only one student visa available to study in Australia – the Student visa (subclass 500). 

After 1 July 2016, if you want to study in Australia, you will need to apply for the Student visa (subclass 500) regardless of your field of study.

To find out the documents you might need to provide with your student visa application, select your education provider from the list available at: Education providers.

For more information, refer to the factsheets below:

Current visa holders

If you hold a student visa with subclass numbers 570 to 576, your visa will remain valid and your visa conditions will not change after 1 July 2016.

After 1 July 2016, family members of Student visa holders (subclasses 570-576) will need to apply for a subclass 500 visa if they want to join a family member in Australia.

General information for students – from 1 July 2016

On 1 July 2016, Australia will make a number of changes to its student visa processes. These changes include the introduction of a simplified student visa framework (SSVF).

Under the SSVF:

  • all international students will now apply for a single Student visa (subclass 500), regardless of their chosen course of study  
  • all international students will be required to apply for their student visa online
  • a new immigration risk framework will be used to guide the evidence of English language and financial capacity that a student needs to provide with their visa application. 

Why the Australian Government is making these changes

The SSVF will support the sustainable growth of Australia’s international education sector by making the process of applying for a student visa simpler to navigate for genuine students, delivering a more targeted approach to immigration integrity and reducing red tape for business.

Key requirements for the Student visa (subclass 500)  

Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE) requirement

The GTE requirement applies to all student visa applicants and considers whether the individual circumstances of the student indicate that their intention is for a temporary stay in Australia. A genuineness assessment is made by taking into account a number of personal factors relating to the student, such as their immigration history, circumstances that might encourage the student to return to their home country and conditions that might encourage them to remain in Australia.

Enrolment in a registered course of study

International students must generally be enrolled in a registered course of study and provide a Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) when they lodge their student visa application.

Exceptions to this requirement apply to Foreign Affairs and Defence sponsored students (Letter of Support from Foreign Affairs and Defence); secondary exchange students (an Acceptance Advice of Secondary Exchange Students form); and postgraduate research students required to remain in Australia for marking of their thesis. 

Financial capacity and English language proficiency

All international students are required to have sufficient funds to cover their course fees and living costs in Australia. While student visa holders are able to work a specified number of hours in Australia, they should not rely on working to cover their course fees and living costs.

As part of the visa application process, we might require students to provide evidence of their financial capacity and English language proficiency. This will be guided by the immigration risk outcomes associated with the student’s country of citizenship and intended education provider.

Where our online client service tool indicates that documentary evidence of financial and English language capacity is required, it is important for applicants to attach these documents to their visa application prior to lodgement. Failure to do so might result in visa refusal.  

More information regarding financial and English language requirements is available.

Health and character

International students are required to be of good character and will generally need to undertake a health examination as part of their student visa application. Students must also obtain Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) before a student visa can be granted. 

How to lodge a student visa application   

All applications for a Student visa (subclass 500) should generally be lodged online. See ImmiAccount for more information.

How long it takes to process a student visa application

We aim to finalise 75 per cent of complete student visa applications within one month of lodgement.

To reduce visa processing times, students are strongly encouraged to submit all required documents with their visa applications. Failure to submit all required documents might lead to processing delays or visa refusal.

Impact of the SSVF on existing student visa holders

The SSVF only applies to student visa applications lodged from 1 July 2016 and will not affect the visas of existing student visa holders.

Family members of existing student visa holders (subclasses 570-576) will need to apply for a subclass 500 visa if they do not currently hold a student visa and want to join their family member in Australia.

Impact on Temporary Graduate visa (subclass 485)

The eligibility criteria for the Temporary Graduate visa (subclass 485) will not change.

English language requirements – from 1 July 2016

The simplified student visa framework (SSVF) will come into effect on 1 July 2016.

The SSVF is designed to make the process of applying for a student visa simpler to navigate for genuine students, deliver a more targeted approach to immigration integrity and reduce red tape for business.

This factsheet summarises the key changes to English language requirements under the SSVF.

Student visa evidentiary requirements

Under the SSVF, students associated with the lowest immigration risk will generally have streamlined evidentiary requirements. This means these students will generally not be required to provide evidence of English language capacity with their visa application, other than a Confirmation of Enrolment which shows that they have met their education provider’s English language requirements. We will however retain the discretion to seek this evidence where appropriate.

Students associated with higher immigration risk, based on their country and education provider immigration risk outcomes, will generally have to provide documentary evidence of English language proficiency with their visa application.

Where documentary evidence is required, the student will need to provide one of the following with their visa application:

  • evidence of an acceptable English language test score
  • evidence that the student falls within an exempt category.

Students and agents will be able to obtain details about the documentation and evidence that will need to be included with their student visa application by accessing a working sample of the online tool on our website from mid May 2016.

The online tool will be fully functional from 1 July 2016 and accessible at any stage of the visa application process, including prior to the submission of a visa application.

Acceptable English language test score

Under the SSVF, where evidence of English language is required, the following minimum English language test scores from these providers will be accepted.

English language test providers and minimum test scores 

English language test providers

Minimum test score

Minimum test score
where combined with
at least 10 weeks' ELICOS

Minimum test score
where combined with
at least 20 weeks' ELICOS

International English Language Testing System

5.5

5

4.5

*Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) paper based

527

500

450

TOEFL internet based test

46

35

32

Cambridge English: Advanced (Certificate in Advanced English)

162

154

147

Pearson Test of English Academic

42

36

30

Occupational English Test

PASS

*The TOEFL paper based test will only be accepted from limited countries and these countries will not change under the SSVF.

To ensure that the English test score is current, the English test must have been taken either within two years before the application is made or within two years before the grant of the visa.  

Where our online client service tool indicates that documentary evidence of English language proficiency is required, it is important for students to attach these documents to their visa application prior to lodgement. Failure to do so might result visa refusal.

English language exemptions

Under the SSVF, the following student categories will continue to be exempt from providing an English language test score with their visa application regardless of the immigration risk rating that applies:

  • students enrolled in fulltime school studies as a principal course, including secondary exchange programmes; postgraduate research courses; standalone English Language Intensive Course for Overseas Students (ELICOS); and Foreign Affairs or Defence sponsored students
  • students who have completed at least five years’ study in one or more of the following countries: Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa, or the Republic of Ireland
  • citizens and passport holders of one of the following English‑speaking countries: UK, USA, Canada, NZ or Republic of Ireland
  • students who have successfully completed in Australia in the English language either the Senior Secondary Certificate of Education or studies at the Certificate IV or higher level, in the two years before applying for the student visa.

The full list of English language exemption categories is specified in a legislative instrument.

Packaging English Language Intensive Course for Overseas Students (ELICOS)

Under the SSVF, there is no limitation on the maximum duration of ELICOS study that could be undertaken. Genuine students will be able to undertake as much ELICOS study as either a standalone course or prior to their principal course, as required. 

Financial capacity requirements – from 1 July 2016

The simplified student visa framework (SSVF) will come into effect on 1 July 2016.

The SSVF is designed to make the process of applying for a student visa simpler to navigate for genuine students, deliver a more targeted approach to immigration integrity and reduce red tape for business.

This factsheet summarises the key changes to financial capacity requirements under the SSVF.

Student visa evidentiary requirements

Under the SSVF, all student visa applicants must have sufficient funds available for the duration of their stay in Australia.

Students associated with the lowest immigration risk will generally have streamlined evidentiary requirements. This means these students will generally be able to satisfy us of their financial capacity by providing a declaration. We will however retain the discretion to seek further evidence where appropriate.

Students associated with higher immigration risk, based on their country and education provider immigration risk outcomes, will generally have to provide specified documentary evidence of financial capacity with their visa application.

Students and agents will be able to obtain details about the documentation and evidence that will need to be included with their student visa application by accessing a working sample of an online tool on our website from late May 2016.

The online tool will be fully functional from 1 July 2016 and accessible at any stage of the visa application process, including prior to the submission of a visa application.

Documentary evidence of financial capacity

Where additional evidence of financial capacity is required, the student will be able to demonstrate this by providing one of the following:

  • evidence of funds to cover travel to Australia and 12 months’ living, course and (for school aged dependants) schooling costs  for the student and accompanying family members
  • evidence of meeting the annual income requirement
  • an Acceptance Advice of Secondary Exchange Students (AASES) form for secondary exchange students only.

The annual income option requires students to provide evidence of personal annual income of at least AUD 60,000. For students accompanied by family members, the amount is AUD 70,000 or more. The income demonstrated must be the personal income of the student’s spouse or parents only.  In circumstances where both the student’s parents are working, their combined income can be considered for this requirement. In all cases, the evidence of annual income must be provided in the form of official government documentation, such as a tax assessment.

The 12-month living and tuition costs option is broadly similar to the requirement that applied to Assessment Level 2 students prior to 1 July 2016. The type of evidence, where required, includes: money deposit or loan with a financial institution, government loan, scholarship or sponsorship.

Where our online client service tool indicates that documentary evidence of financial capacity is required, it is important for students to attach these documents to their visa application prior to lodgement. Failure to do so might result in visa refusal.

Living cost amounts

From 1 July 2016, the 12 month living cost will be:

  • Student/guardian -  AUD 19,830
  • Partner/spouse -  AUD 6,940
  • Child - AUD 2,970

School aged dependants

Where school aged children are included in the student visa application, schooling costs of AUD 8,000 per year for each child will need to be added to the amount of funds that is required.

Dependent children of PhD students are not required to demonstrate evidence of schooling costs if they provide evidence of enrolment in an Australian government school with exemption of school fees.

Dependent children of Australian Commonwealth Government scholarship recipients, including children of Foreign Affairs and Defence sponsored students, are also not required to demonstrate evidence of schooling costs if they provide evidence of enrolment in a government school where the fees have been waived and the student is enrolled in a course as an Australian Government Commonwealth scholarship recipient.

Consumer Price Index (CPI) indexation

Financial amounts including annual income, living costs and schooling costs will be regularly reviewed and adjusted in line with the CPI figures for the previous calendar year.

Genuine access to funds

Students and their accompanying family members must have genuine access to funds, whether it is provided by the student themselves or another eligible person. The funds shown in the visa application must be available for use to financially support the student and any accompanying family members during their stay in Australia.    

When considering whether the funds shown will be genuinely available, we will take into account factors including:

  • the nature of the relationship between the student and the person who is providing the funds, where applicable  
  • income, assets and employment of the student or the other person who is providing the funds
  • previous visa history of both the student and the person providing the funds.

Family members of students

From 1 July 2016, family members of existing student visa holders will need to apply for a subclass 500 visa if they do not currently hold a student visa and wish to join the student in Australia.

Generally the same level of evidentiary requirements of financial capacity applied to primary applicants (students) would apply to their family members, including subsequent dependants. 

In all circumstances, our officers have discretion to ask for further evidence of funds, if required. 

Overview of key changes – from 1 July 2016

The simplified student visa framework (SSVF) comes into effect on 1 July 2016.

The SSVF is designed to make the process of applying for a student visa simpler to navigate for genuine students, deliver a more targeted approach to immigration integrity and reduce red tape.

This factsheet summarises the key changes under the SSVF compared to the student visa process before 1 July 2016.

Applying for a student visa

From 1 July 2016:

  • international students will apply for a single Student visa (subclass 500), regardless of their chosen course of study
  • student guardians will apply for the new Student Guardian visa (subclass 590)
  • all students and student guardians will generally be required to lodge their visa application online by creating an account in ImmiAccount

Single immigration risk framework—English and financial requirements

From 1 July 2016, a single immigration risk framework applies to all international students and replaces the previous streamlined visa processing and Assessment Level frameworks.

Under the SSVF, the combined immigration risk outcomes of the student’s education provider and country of citizenship will be used to guide the level of documentary evidence of English language and financial capacity that the student needs to provide with their visa application.

Streamlined evidentiary requirements

Under the SSVF, students associated with the lowest immigration risk will generally have streamlined evidentiary requirements.

This means that these students will generally be able to satisfy us of their financial capacity by providing a declaration and a Confirmation of Enrolment which shows that they have met their education provider’s English language requirements.

We will however retain the discretion to seek further evidence where appropriate.

The online client service tool

Students will be able to obtain details about the documentation and evidence that will need to be included with their student visa application by accessing a working sample of the online tool on our website from mid May 2016. The online tool will be fully functional from 1 July 2016 and accessible at any stage of the visa application process, including prior to the submission of a visa application.

Financial capacity

Under the SSVF, all student visa applicants must have sufficient funds available for the duration of their stay in Australia.

Students associated with higher immigration risk, based on their country and education provider immigration risk outcomes, will generally need to provide documentary evidence of financial capacity with their visa application.

Where our online client service tool indicates that documentary evidence of financial capacity is required, it is important for applicants to attach these documents to their visa application prior to lodgement. Failure to do so might result visa refusal.

Where additional evidence of financial capacity is required, the student will be able to provide this as one of the following:

  • evidence of funds to cover travel to Australia and 12 months’ living, course fees and (for school-aged dependants) schooling costs for the student and accompanying family members
  • evidence of meeting the annual income requirement
  • an Acceptance Advice of Secondary Exchange Students (AASES)  form, for secondary exchange students only.

The annual income option requires students to provide evidence of personal annual income of at least AUD 60,000. For students accompanied by family members the amount is AUD 70,000 or more. The income demonstrated must be the personal income of the student’s spouse or parents only. In circumstances where both the student’s parents are working, their combined income can be considered for this requirement. In all cases, the evidence of annual income must be in the form of official government documentation, such as a tax assessment.

The 12-month living costs requirement is broadly similar to the requirement that applied to  Assessment Level 2 students prior to 1 July 2016. The type of evidence, where required, includes: money deposit or loan with a financial institution, government loan, scholarship or sponsorship. 

Living cost amounts

From 1 July 2016, the 12 month living cost will be:

  • Student/guardian - AUD 19,830
  • Partner/spouse - AUD 6,940
  • Child - AUD 2,970

Consumer Price Index (CPI) indexation

Financial amounts including annual income, living costs and schooling costs will be regularly reviewed and adjusted in line with the CPI figures for the previous calendar year.

International English language requirements

Where evidence of English language proficiency is required, one of the following minimum English language test scores will be accepted:

  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) overall band score of 5.5
  • IELTS overall band score of 5 when packaged with at least 10 weeks' English Language Intensive Course for Overseas Students (ELICOS)
  • IELTS overall band score of 4.5 when packaged with at least 20 weeks' ELICOS.

The equivalent of the above minimum IELTS test scores from the following English language providers will also be accepted:

  • Test of English as a Foreign Language paper based test (TOEFL)
  • Pearson Test of English Academic
  • Cambridge English: Advanced
  • Occupational English Test.

Where our online client service tool indicates that documentary evidence of English language proficiency is required, it is important for applicants to attach these documents to their visa application prior to lodgement. Failure to do so might result in visa refusal.

English language exemptions

Currently some students are exempt from providing evidence of an English language test score, regardless of the level of immigration risk that applies.

The full list of English language exemption categories is set out in the legislative instrument.

More information about English language requirements is available.

English Language Intensive Course for Overseas Students (ELICOS)

Under the SSVF, there is no limitation on the maximum duration of ELICOS study that could be undertaken. Genuine students will be able to undertake as much ELICOS study as either a standalone course or prior to their principal course, as required. 

Evidence of enrolment

International students outside Australia must be enrolled in a registered course of study and provide a Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) when they lodge their Student visa application.

Students in Australia can still apply with a letter of offer or a CoE but must obtain a CoE to be granted the visa.

Existing exceptions to these requirements will continue to apply to Foreign Affairs and Defence sponsored students (Letter of Support from Foreign Affairs/ Defence); secondary exchange students (an Acceptance Advice of Secondary Exchange Students form); and postgraduate research students required to remain in Australia for marking of their thesis (letter from their education provider).

Course transfers

From 1 July 2016, a new condition will be introduced which requires all Student (subclass 500) visa holders to maintain enrolment at the same level or a higher Australian Qualification Framework (AQF) level for which they were granted a visa, unless they are undertaking a doctoral degree (AQF10) and transfer to a master’s degree (AQF9).

Transferring to a lower AQF level course or transferring from an AQF level course to a non-AQF Award course would be in breach of the student visa condition and might result in the visa being cancelled. Students who want to change to a lower level course must apply for, and be granted, a new student visa before they change their course.

Standard 7 of the National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2007 also applies to transfers between CRICOS-registered providers. For more information visit the Department of Education and Training website.

School sector requirements

Age requirements for school study

From 1 July 2016, all school students must be of an appropriate age for the entry level for their school course, regardless of their country of citizenship.

To be granted a visa for school studies, the student must meet the following age requirements:

Appropriate age for school entry

Age requirement:

  • at least six years old at time of visa application
  • less than 17 years old at time of commencing Year 9 of high school
  • less than 18 years at time of commencing Year 10 of high school
  • less than 19 years at time of commencing Year 11 of high school
  • less than 20 years at time of commencing Year 12 of high school.

Grant periods for primary school students

Generally, the maximum period for a student visa grant is five years, with the exception of primary school-aged students where a maximum period of two years will generally be applied.

The shorter grant period for primary school students will act as an important safeguard for younger and more vulnerable students.

Welfare

All students under 18 must continue to have welfare arrangements in place for the duration of their stay in Australia and provide one of the following forms of evidence at the time they lodge their visa application:

  • Form 157N which nominates a suitable relative in Australia
  • Form 157N and an application for a Student Guardian (subclass 590) for a nominated relative
  • a Confirmation of Appropriate Accommodation and Welfare letter from the education provider
  • an Acceptance Advice of Secondary Exchange Students (AASES) form.

Packaging arrangements

Genuine students will continue to be able to package two or more courses on the one student visa where there is progression from one course to another.

Under the SSVF, education providers will not be required to formally nominate educational business partners and will be able to package with other educational providers with whom they have a commercial arrangement.

Family members of students

From 1 July 2016, family members of existing student visa holders will need to apply for a Subclass 500 visa if they do not currently hold a student visa and want to join the student in Australia.

Family unit members must be declared on the initial student visa application, regardless of whether or not they intend to join the student in Australia at a later stage. Those not declared will not be eligible for the grant of a visa at a later stage. An exception applies to those who became a family member after the primary applicant (student) was granted a visa.

From 1 July 2016, there will be no restrictions on the duration of particular courses that the primary applicant (student) must study to be accompanied by family members, including subsequent dependants.

Generally, the same level of evidentiary requirements of financial capacity applied to the primary applicant (student) would apply to their family members, including subsequent dependants.

In all circumstances, our officers have discretion to ask for evidence of funds, if required. 

Student Guardian visa

All applicants for a Student Guardian visa must have sufficient funds to support themselves, the nominating student(s) and any secondary applicants for the duration of their intended stay in Australia.

Under the SSVF, the single immigration risk framework will not apply to Student Guardian visa applicants. Rather, all guardians must provide evidence of their financial capacity with their visa application.

Evidence of financial capacity can be provided in either of the following forms:

  • evidence that their spouse has annual income of  AUD 70,000 or more
  • evidence of sufficient funds to cover travel costs, and the first 12 months' living costs for themselves and each dependent child included in the application.

Under the SSVF, subsequent applications by family members of guardians will not be accepted. Guardians who want to bring additional family members under six years of age to Australia must apply for a new Student Guardian visa for themselves and these dependants.

Reporting by education sector

Under the SSVF, we will maintain the capacity to report on visa outcomes by education sectors. These education sectors will be aligned to the replaced seven (subclass 570 to 576) student visas. Information regarding these education sectors will also be included in student visa grant letters and Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO).

Processing times

We aim to finalise 75 per cent of complete student visa applications within one month of lodgement.

To reduce visa processing times, students are strongly encouraged to submit all required documents with their visa applications. Failure to submit all required documents might lead to processing delays or visa refusal.

Fraud

We will continue to focus on ensuring that only applicants who are genuine students, and their immediate family members, are granted a student visa to Australia. Instances of fraud are taken very seriously and are thoroughly investigated by us.

An individual’s visa application could be refused or their visa could be cancelled if there is evidence that the individual has given, or caused to be given, a bogus document or false or misleading information. If a visa is refused or cancelled under these circumstances, the individual could be excluded from applying for further visas for a period of time.

General information for education providers – from 1 July 2016

The simplified student visa framework (SSVF) will come into effect on 1 July 2016.

Key changes under the SSVF are:

  • a reduction in the number of student visa subclasses from eight to two
  • the introduction of a simplified single immigration risk framework for all international students.

The SSVF is designed to make the process of applying for a student visa simpler to navigate for genuine students, deliver a more targeted approach to immigration integrity and reduce red tape for business.

This factsheet summarises the key changes for education providers under the SSVF compared to the student visa process in place prior to 1 July 2016.

Implications of the SSVF for education providers

Under the SSVF, all education providers registered with the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS) have been allocated an immigration risk rating between one (lowest risk) and three (highest risk), based on the immigration risk outcomes of their international students over the previous 12-month period. The same approach has also been used to allocate an immigration risk rating to each country.

The combined immigration risk outcomes of the student’s education provider and country of citizenship will be used to guide the level of financial capacity and English language proficiency related documentation that the student needs to provide with their student visa application.

Through this model, all education providers across all education sectors will have access to the benefits associated with ‘streamlined evidentiary requirements’ for at least some countries.

Meaning of streamlined evidentiary requirements

Where streamlined evidentiary requirements apply, the student visa applicant will generally be able to satisfy the Department of their financial capacity and English language proficiency by declaration by providing a Confirmation of Enrolment. This is similar to existing streamlined visa processing and Assessment Level (AL) 1 arrangements that existed prior to 1 July 2016.

We will however retain the discretion to seek additional information about the student’s financial capacity and English language proficiency where appropriate.

All students, regardless of the financial capacity and English language proficiency documentation that might be required, will continue to have to meet all other core visa criteria, such as the Genuine Temporary Entrant requirement and health and character criteria.

Eligible students for streamlined evidentiary requirements under SSVF

The following table provides an overview of the students that notionally have streamlined evidentiary requirements under the SSVF.

Eligibility for streamlined evidentiary requirements is determined based on the combined immigration risk rating of the student’s country of citizenship and intended education provider. Where the student intends to package courses to combine their preliminary course of study with their principal course of study, the education provider immigration risk rating applied to the student visa application would correspond to the student’s principal course of study.

In the table S refers to streamlined evidentiary requirements while R refers to regular evidentiary requirements. Where regular evidentiary requirements apply, the student will generally be required to provide evidence of their financial and English language capacity with their visa application.

Where our online client service tool indicates that documentary evidence of financial and English language capacity is required, it is important for applicants to attach these documents to their visa application prior to lodgement. Failure to do so might result in visa refusal.

Education provider
Immigration risk

Country Immigration Risk

One

Two

Three

One

S

S

S

Two

S

S

R

Three

S

R

R

Non-publication of immigration risk ratings of education providers and countries

Due to commercial sensitivities, the immigration risk ratings of education providers and countries will not be published but will instead feed into an online tool that will guide students about their likely English language proficiency and financial capacity evidentiary requirements.

Sharing immigration risk data externally, including with agents

We do not recommend the sharing of education provider immigration risk data with external parties, including agents, because it can increase the potential for the education provider to be targeted by non-genuine applicants and, consequently, increase the likelihood of an education provider’s immigration risk rating increasing over time.

Updates to immigration risk ratings

Immigration risk ratings are intended to be reviewed and updated every six months based on immigration risk outcomes from the previous 12-month period. The first update is expected to take place in March 2017.

Opting in to the SSVF

Education providers are not required to formally opt in to the SSVF as it will apply to all education providers.

Obligations for education providers under the SSVF

There are no additional obligations placed on education providers as a direct result of the SSVF. While an education provider can choose to put in place strategies in order to obtain or maintain a lower immigration risk rating, there is no obligation or requirement for education providers to do this.

Nominating educational business partners under the SSVF

Education providers are not required to formally nominate educational business partners under the SSVF and are able to package with other education providers with whom they have a commercial arrangement.

Immigration risk ratings applied to smaller education providers

Education providers that enrol small numbers of international students are allocated a default risk rating of two.

Streamlined visa processing (SVP) arrangements

The SVP policy guidelines expire at the end of June 2016. SVP will continue to operate as usual until this time.