FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS - PEOPLE GIVING SUPPORT TO SOMEONE APPLYING FOR A TOURIST VISA
I am giving support to someone who is applying for a tourist visa. Can I find out about their visa application?
Australian privacy requirements prevent this office from discussing specific details of a visa application with anyone other than the visa applicant, unless specifically authorised (in writing) by the applicant. This includes any person providing support to the application. These restrictions apply to all Australian government organisations, not only the Australian missions in Vietnam.
If the visa applicant wants to authorise you or any other person to be able to discuss their application with this office, or for you to receive correspondence about the application, they must authorise this in writing. They can do this by using Form 956. This form is available on our website by following the link above and from the Australian Visa Application Centres (AVAC) in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. This must be signed by both the visa applicant and the person to be authorised.
If the visa applicant has not given this specific written authorisation, we are not permitted to discuss details of the application with you.
Can I provide a “guarantee” or undertaking that the visa applicant will abide by their visa conditions?
For a Tourist visa (subclass 676), there is no provision for a formal ‘sponsor’. There is also no provision in the Migration Regulations for an enforceable undertaking or ‘guarantee’. Therefore, while offers of support (including Statutory Declarations) from Australian friends or relatives are taken into account, for a Tourist visa it is the circumstances of the applicant themselves, above all, which must be considered.
For more details on what evidence the applicant themselves should provide, please refer to: http://www.vietnam.embassy.gov.au/.
Can I lodge a financial bond so that the visa applicant can be granted a visa?
A Tourist visa (subclass 676) does not allow for a security bond. This is not possible under the Tourist visa legislation.
If you are an Australian relative of the visa applicant, you may be able to sponsor them for a Sponsored Family Visitor visa (subclass 679). This is a different type of visa from the Tourist visa (subclass 676).
(Note: “Relative” means a parent, child, adopted child, spouse, brother, sister, grandparent, grandchild, aunt, uncle niece, nephew, or 'step' equivalent of any of these.)
For a Sponsored Family Visitor visa (subclass 679), a bond may, in some cases, be requested.
For more information on the Sponsored Family Visitor visa, please see: Sponsored Family Visitors.
I provided evidence of my own funds to support the person applying for the visa, but the visa was refused. Does this mean that the Visa and Citizenship Office does not believe I have enough money?
It must be emphasised that for a Tourist visa, it is the visa applicant’s own situation which is most important. Where the person does not meet the Tourist visa requirements on their own merits, and/or there is little or no evidence of the claimed relationship with an Australian party, this would generally not be sufficient for a Tourist visa to be granted.
This does not mean that the supporter’s funds are considered insufficient. It simply means that the applicant’s own circumstances are such that they do not meet the legislative requirements for a Tourist visa.
I provided a letter of support for the person applying for the visa, but the visa was refused. Why was my offer of support not enough?
Again, for a Tourist (subclass 676) visa, it is above all the visa applicant’s own situation which must be assessed. Even if an Australian citizen or permanent resident is offering support, it may not be sufficient to outweigh an applicant's own circumstances, if these indicate little incentive to abide by their visa conditions and to depart Australia at the end of their authorised stay.
This does not mean in any way that the offer of support was considered not genuine, but merely indicates that the applicant does not meet the requirements for the grant of a Tourist visa.
The visa application for a person I was offering support was refused. What can they do?
The visa applicant should read carefully the letter notifying them of the previous decision. This letter would explain if any review options are available. If review is available, details on how to apply for that review would have been included.
In any case there is no legislated power for our offices in Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City to review a decision to refuse a visa application. Review, if available, is via the Migration Review Tribunal as advised in the refusal letter.
What if a person has been refused a Tourist visa and wants to apply again? What should they do?
A person who has been refused a visa outside Australia is entitled to apply again if they wish.
We are not able to guarantee what the outcome of any future visa application may be. Any new application will be considered on its merits and against the legislative and policy requirements applicable at that time. However, applicants should ensure they refer carefully to the previous decision letter. They should ensure that they understand the issues raised in the letter informing them of the previous decision.
If they wish to apply again, they should try to provide more detailed or new information to try to address these issues, or to show that their circumstances have changed since the previous decision. Where the evidence provided in an application is the same as a previously refused application, the result is likely to be the same.
Created 21 June 2011