The Department of Immigration and Border Protection has recently reviewed and subsequently updated the Ministerial Direction for Character Decision-Making as of the 23rd of December 2014.
So what does this mean if you are applying for a Visa to Australia? Anyone who wants to live, work, visit, invest or study in Australia through an Australian Visa needs to pass the character requirements that are stipulated in the Migration Act. This is particularly relevant if you as an applicant have any criminal history either outside or within Australia. If this is the case irrespective of which Australian visa you are applying for, police reports and relevant paperwork will be requested with your Visa application.
The Character test allows the Department of Immigration and the Minister of Immigration to deny a Visa application or revoke an existing Visa if the applicant or Visa holder fails to pass this test. This is done on a case-by-case basis.
Some reasons for failing the Character test include if the Visa applicant or Visa holder:
* Has a substantial criminal record
* Are likely to engage in criminal activities
* Has association with another individual, group or organisation whom the Minister reasonably believes has engaged in criminal conduct
* Are likely to incite discord within the community
* Are likely to engage in criminal activities in criminal activities in Australia
* Are likely to stalk, harass or molest another person while in Australia
The character requirements and ability for the Department of Immigration to cancel or revoke an Australian Visa allows individual circumstances to be taken into consideration which is why it is imperative to ensure all documentation and information provided on a Visa application is complete and conclusive. This discretion by the Department to assess an application on a character basis ensures that applicants and Visa holders do not pose a threat to the the community in which they are hoping to reside.
If you have any questions about what is involved in the Character test for an Australian Visa, please don’t hesitate to call one of our experienced migration agents based in Brisbane, Queensland.