Graduate Visa Application Pitfalls

The Graduate Visa allows graduates to remain in Australia, after they have completed their studies, for 2 years to work and have a path to a permanent skilled visa.

The application looks deceivingly simple, and a great number of graduates attempt to file this application on their own, without getting any advice or guidance from a migration law expert.  While a lot of these applications end up getting approved, a significant numbers are refused for failing to comply with the “time of application” requirements.  The sad consequence of a refusal is that after years of studies and thousands of dollars in tuition, the refused applicants will have to return home.

A client came to us recently with a notice of refused application in her hand.  She had completed her degree some 2 months before lodging the application online.  She was not aware that providing evidence of application to the Australian Federal Police for character report is a “time of application” requirement.  She had innocently thought “I will provide it when the case officer asks for it”.

What our client did not know is that Department officers do not need to wait for documents to arrive.  If applications are deemed incomplete, they simply refuse them.

Our Migration experts, who are lawyers, not agents, made an application to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal and made submissions as to the fact that the document was indeed in existence at the time of application, and even though it was not submitted with the application, it is within the “reasonable” period to now submit it, and therefore satisfy the legal requirement.  This submission was based on recent decisions by the superior courts in Australia and was accepted by the Tribunal.  Our client’s visa was subsequently granted.

Even if the applicants wish to make these applications on their own, it is always wise and ultimately valuable to obtain legal advice as to the legal requirements of this type of application.