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Migration – can a ticking clock end your visa application?

Dominic Cookman

29 Mar 2017

Topics

  • Migration
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Obtaining a visa to come to Australia is usually not easy. Setting aside travellers visas, we are focusing here on the myriad of student, work, sponsored and partner visas. In Australia, the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) oversees and monitors compliance of migrants with the conditions of their visas. The last thing you want to do is damage your chances of  by not completing required information in a timely manner.

There are two key groups that can find themselves impacted by a DIBP request.

Visa applicants

The DIBP will often ask visa applicants to provide further information as part of an ongoing application process. For example, a holder of a student visa may receive a request asking them to show that they still have access to sufficient funds to support themselves for the remainder of their study.

Visa holders

Visa holders may also find holding and complying with the conditions of an Australian visa is not always straightforward. Where a visa holder reports that their circumstances may be about to change (or have already changed), they may be asked by DIBP for further information. For example, a person on a student visa may receive a request for information asking them to prove that they still have the necessary funds to support themselves, or that they are still in a relationship with their partner.

The critical response time

In either case, these requests typically stipulate that the recipient of the letter has 28 days, from the date of the letter, to respond. These 28 days can slip by very quickly. In addition, it can often be the case that actioning these requests can require you, as the applicant, to obtain documents or information from other sources, which can mean in practice that the request must be addressed immediately.

Missing a deadline or ignoring a request for information from the DIBP is very serious. It can be grounds for, and often results in, cancellation of a visa or refusal to grant one. Often we are consulted by clients who have been either overwhelmed by, too scared or too busy to deal with a communication from the DIBP.

We cannot emphasise strongly enough: if you receive any communication from the DIBP you must address it immediately. It can be burdensome, even frightening, to deal with the DIBP, but if you contact us as soon as you can, then help is available.

How can Snedden Hall & Gallop Lawyers help you?

If you are a visa applicant or a visa holder and have been asked by DIBP for further information, contact us immediately. Snedden Hall & Gallop’s migration team is one of the most experienced in Australia. We can assist you in ensuring your response to DIBP is timely and effective. Please contact us by phone on (02) 6285 8000 or by email here and you can see details of our migration team here.