Visa Refusal Tips

Don’t Get Your Visa Refused - This 1 Tip Could Save Your Visa

Don’t Get Your Visa Refused. The 1 Tip That Could Save Your Visa

Don’t get a visa refusal. This 1 tip could save your visa.

With my job as a migration lawyer, I come across many clients with visa refusals for many different reasons. There are actually a lot of different reasons but just to name a few, it could be a partner visa where the Department didn’t believe their relationship was genuine, a student visa where the Department didn’t believe the applicant was a genuine student, or a work visa where the Department didn’t believe the applicant had the right work experience for the position the applicant was being nominated for.

In this article, I would like to share one very important tip that could actually save your visa, as well as avoid going through a time-consuming and costly exercise.

The reason for this article is to explain one very important visa requirement which is called ‘Time of Application Requirement’.

When it comes to lodging a visa application, you need to make sure that you satisfy every visa criterion that applies in your situation including any ‘Time of Application Requirement’. If a time of application criteria applies in your visa application, you must make sure that you have the evidence handy and submit it along with your application at the same time.

Read on and I’ll explain this in more detail with a practical example.

The 1 Tip that Could Save Your Visa

Jay Son – Australian Immigration Lawyer

Jay Son is our Principal Immigration Lawyer and Director of Hummingbird Legal, admitted to the Supreme Court of Queensland and the High Court of Australia. Jay is based in Australia and practises exclusively in Australian immigration law.

Jay is a strong migration advocate and is highly experienced in challenging government decisions in relation to Australian immigration law. He solves difficult migration matters and visa problems including the AAT appeals, visa refusals, visa cancellations, Schedule 3 submissions, health waiver and character concerns.

If you want to learn more about Jay, click here.

What’s Involved in a visa application process?

When it comes to lodging a visa application in Australia, there are multiple elements that you need to get right.

As you can imagine, every visa application has its own unique requirements that need to be satisfied and so the types of documents you need to provide are also different.

First you need to find a suitable visa that you are eligible to apply for, second, you have to collect the right documents to support your application, and third you have to do this on time, which often means you have to lodge your visa application before your current visa expires.



What is Time of Application Requirement?

Because many people usually apply for a further visa in Australia while they are already on a temporary visa that has an expiry, it is very common in a visa application that people are actually not able to prepare every single document in their visa application upfront when they lodge it.

Thankfully, Immigration doesn’t always require you to provide everything upfront, so if there are a couple of documents, such as your birth certificate or something similar that you can’t get on time, you can generally provide it to the Department at a later time by adding them to your existing application.

While this is all well and good, you need to remember that there are certain visas that DO require certain types of documents to be provided upfront, so when you lodge your visa application, you have to have these certain types of documents ready and provide them at the same time.



Example of ‘Time of Application Requirement’

I’ll explain this with a practical an example to help you understand. We will use an example of a specific visa called 485 visa in this case.

To give you an overview of what this visa is, the subclass 485 temporary graduate visa is a specific visa that many international students find themselves applying for after they graduate from studying a registered course in Australia.

When applying for this visa, there is a very specific requirement that the applicant for this visa must show or supply evidence that they have applied for an Australian Federal Police clearance certificate at the time of their application for the 485 visa. Simply put, this means if you apply for the 485 visa today, you need to have already applied for the AFP clearance certificate either earlier today, yesterday or even before that.

Applying for an AFP certificate is actually very simple. It is really just a matter of simply going online, filling out a form and within almost 30 minutes you can complete the whole application, and you will almost straight away get an email receipt with a reference number from the AFP, which you can easily attach to your visa application on the day of your application and doing this will easily satisfy this specific AFP requirement for a 485 visa.

BUT this is where people find themselves getting into trouble.

As I said earlier, applying for an AFP police clearance certificate is very simple, but because of the very simple nature, people sometimes overlook this or they even underestimate the importance of the AFP police clearance requirement altogether in a 485 visa.



Serious Consequences

In the same earlier example of the 485 visa, the consequence of not having your AFP certificate applied for prior to lodging your application will mean that your visa application will be refused.

The consequence of a visa refusal in this case is not impacted by the fact that you may not have any criminal history. Also, you will find yourself that it is too late to fix your situation even if you realise later that you had forgotten to apply for an AFP certificate so you then apply and get the certificate and attach it to your existing application. 

This is because the person in this example would fail what’s called a ‘ time of application requirement’. Showing that you have applied for an AFP police clearance certificate in a 485 visa is a ‘time of application requirement’. If your visa has been refused because of a similar reason, watch this video by clicking here. The information found here will also help you understand your rights after having a visa refusal.



Can You Appeal at the AAT?

If you’ve been following our blog, you are probably aware that the next step after getting a visa refusal is often appealing your case at the AAT (‘Administrative Appeals Tribunal’) to turn around that visa refusal to a visa grant.

Now, if you’re in a similar situation and your visa application gets refused because you don’t satisfy the time of application requirement, it’s important to understand that it is actually very difficult to argue your case when you go to the AAT.

As a result, a seemingly minor error that could have been easily avoided could result in a significant dent and a significant burden in your entire migration plan.

Obviously each situation is different and in some cases it is not impossible to argue a case involving a failure of a time of application requirement, for example, if I would borrow the earlier example of the 485 visa AFP refusal situation again, in that case, if the AFP certificate was not provided along with the visa application upfront, I would then have to look at the specific circumstances surrounding the visa applicant’s situations at the time of making the 485 visa application, as well as when the AFP certificate was actually applied for, and why.



Take Away Point

However, going to the AAT is stressful enough and trying to figure out whether you have a compelling case to win at the AAT is even more stressful. Moreover, having a visa refusal on your record not only looks bad on your immigration history, it can sometimes have a huge impact on your future prospects in a further visa eligibility.

Therefore, it is always best to avoid having a visa refusal altogether by ensuring that your visa application is granted in the first place, especially in cases involving a time of application requirement, which is often difficult to argue based on circumstances that occurred after the specific events surrounding the visa refusal had already taken place.

We have used an example of a 485 visa a lot today to explain all of this, but as you can appreciate, obviously every visa is different and some visa applications don’t even have the time of application requirement while other visas might have even more time of application requirements.

The point I am making today is that when it comes to lodging a visa application, you need to first understand every visa criterion that applies in your situation as well as the correct timing of when these criteria must be satisfied. If a time of application criteria apply in the visa that you want to apply for, you must first make sure that you have the evidence handy and submit it along with your application at the same time.

If you do think you need more time to collect the documents required to satisfy the time of application requirement in case your current visa is expiring, it is worth exploring some alternative visa options. This will buy you the time you need to be able to satisfy all visa requirements when you apply for your chosen visa.

And as always, if you are in doubt, feel free to contact us and we will be happy to help you clarify your visa requirements.

So this was the very important tip to save your visa I wanted to share with you today.



Contact Us

If you need assistance with your visa application at any stage, or if you have a case at the AAT either because your visa was refused or cancelled, we can help you.

We have helped many clients get their visa from the Department of Home Affairs and/or win their AAT Appeal cases and achieve positive AAT Review outcomes. We assist our clients by identifying their most compelling arguments, compiling all relevant evidence, and drafting persuasive submissions on their behalf. We will talk to you and other relevant people around you to understand your case and gather evidence.

If you want to reach out to us to help you with appealing your case to the AAT, or any other immigration enquiries, you can call us, drop an enquiry form or send us an email.


Need more Immigration tips and information?

If you would like more tips about Australian immigration, visas and updates, sign up for our free immigration newsletter by clicking here.

We also have an educational YouTube channel about Australian immigration, ‘Hummingbird Legal – A Fresh Take on Migration Law by Jay Son’. This is where we provide practical tips, visa information and step by step guide on Australian immigration and updates.

You can visit our YouTube channel by simply clicking here. Subscribe to our channel and get the latest Australian immigration updates and news.

Need legal help?

We will help and navigate your migration journey together