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Emerald Visa and Immigration Services can lodge a character submission if you do not meet the character requirements at the time of applying for your visa application.

Meet our character requirements

We will not grant you a visa to enter Australia if there is a risk you will:

  • engage in criminal conduct
  • harass, molest, intimidate or stalk another person
  • vilify a segment of the Australian community
  • incite discord in the Australian community
  • be a danger to the Australian community

Learn more about meeting our character requirements.

Enter Australia with a criminal record

As part of your application for a temporary or permanent visa, we will check for any criminal records. You may need to provide a police clearance from your country and your other countries of residence to us.

You will not pass the character test if you hold a substantial criminal record. If you don’t pass the character test, you will not get a visa to enter Australia.

New Zealand citizens, with any kind of criminal record, should check if you need to apply for a visa before you leave New Zealand. Contact the Australian High Commission in Auckland well before you intend to travel to find out if you need to apply for a visa.

Ask us to waive your re-entry ban

We may not let you return to Australia for a set period of time if you overstay your visa. You can ask us to waive your re-entry ban.

If you are applying for a new temporary visa, write to us to explain the compelling and compassionate reasons why you should be allowed to re-enter Australia. Submit your written statement as a supporting document when you lodge your visa application.

If you are applying for a permanent visa, we will look at your immigration history as part of our assessment of your application.

Refusal or cancellation

If you do not pass character requirements, the Minister or a delegate can refuse your application or cancel your visa.

To decide if you pass character requirements, we consider a variety of matters, including:

  • the protection of the Australian community
  • the best interests of any children in Australia
  • Australia’s international legal responsibilities
  • the impact of visa refusal or cancellation on your family in Australia
  • any impact on Australian business and community interests

If we cancel your visa on character grounds, we may not be able to grant you another visa.

Mandatory cancellation

By law, we must cancel your visa if you are serving a sentence in a prison full-time for an Australian crime, and you:

  • Have been sentenced to death, imprisonment for life or imprisonment for longer than a year .
  • Have been convicted of a sexually based crime involving a child by an Australian or foreign court.
  • Have had a charge proven for a sexually based crime involving a child, even if you were discharged without conviction.
  • Have been found guilty of a sexually based crime involving a child, even if you were discharged without conviction.

If we must cancel your visa, you have 28 days to request revocation of the cancellation.  Revocation of the cancellation decision would have the effect of restoring your visa.

Review a refusal or cancellation

In certain cases, you may appeal to the AAT if we refuse or cancel your visa for failing to meet character requirements.

If a delegate of the Minister decides not to revoke the cancellation of your visa, you can apply for a review by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT).

If you are in Australia , appeals have strict time limits. You must apply in writing within the time specified by the Department in our decision notice.

You may seek judicial review if you believe the decision was not lawfully made.

Appeal a refusal or cancellation

If we must cancel your visa you, your sponsor or your nominator have 28 days to request we consider restoring your visa.

If a delegate of the minister decides not to restore your visa, you can apply for a review by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT).

In certain cases, you may appeal to the AAT if we refuse or cancel your visa.

Appeals have strict time limits. You must apply in writing within 9 days of our decision notice.

You may seek judicial review if you believe the decision was not lawfully made.

Book a Consulation Today

To find out what your options are please complete our online enquiry form and one of our friendly agents will be in touch.