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VISAS, IMMIGRATION AND CITIZENSHIP
DEADLINE FOR VISITOR AND TEMPORARY WORK VISAS DURING THE CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR PERIOD: FRIDAY 19 NOVEMBER 2015
The Australian Embassy will be closed over the Christmas and New Year period. If you are planning to travel to Australia over the Christmas / New Year period, the deadline for all Visitor (subclass 600) and Temporary Work (subclass 400) visa applications is Friday 19 November 2015.
For applications lodged after 19 November 2015, the Visa Office is unable to guarantee a decision before Christmas.
ONLINE VISA LODGEMENT
From 1 October 2015, access to electronic (online) lodgement for Visitor visas (subclass 600) and Temporary Work (Short Stay Activity) visas (subclass 400) is now available to passport holders of the Russian Federation who want to visit Australia for tourism or business purposes.
For more general information, please click here.
For a list of frequently asked questions, please click here.
CAP AND CEASE ARRANGEMENTS FOR OFFSHORE GENERAL SKILLED MIGRATION VISA APPLICATIONS
The Assistant Minister set a cap for offshore General Skilled Migration (GSM) visas which took effect on 22 September 2015. The following visas are affected:
- Skilled Independent (subclass 175)
- Skilled Sponsored (subclass 176)
- Skilled Regional Sponsored (subclass 475)
The cap sets the maximum number of places that can be granted in the 2015-16 financial year for these visa subclasses. This total has already been reached. Therefore, applications for these visas that were not finalised before 22 September 2015 are taken not to have been made and the relevant visa application charge will be repaid to affected applicants.
For comprehensive information on this, please refer to our department's website by clicking here.
INCREASE TO VISA APPLICATION CHARGES
From 1 July 2015, there was an increase to Visa Application Charges. Our website will be updated with more specific detail in due course. For further information, please click here.
New Website - border.gov.au
On 1 July 2015, the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service (ACBPS) integrated with the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (the Department) and the Australian Border Force was established.
To support the integration, a new website has been launched at www.border.gov.au. From this date, internet searches for immi.gov.au and customs.gov.au will redirect to this new address.
Some pages will automatically redirect to the new location. You will need to fix any broken links, bookmarks or favourites in your system from 1 July 2015. The new URLs to specific webpages will not be available before this date.
CHANGES TO UKRAINE PROCESSING ARRANGEMENTS
From 16 February 2015, all new visa and citizenship applications from Ukrainian nationals residing in Ukraine will be processed by the Australian High Commission in London. Applications received prior to 16 February 2015 will continue to be processed by the Australian Embassy in Moscow.
Please visit the Australian High Commission’s website for further information: http://www.uk.embassy.gov.au/lhlh/Visas_and_Migration.html
CHANGES TO PAYMENT METHODS
From 16 February 2015, all payments for Visa and Citizenship applications should be made by credit card.
Acceptable cards will include Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Diners and JCB International. The Visa Application Charge will be debited in Australian dollars.
Applying for a visa
Processing times for Visitor and Temporary Work visas
Applications for Visitor (subclass 600) and Temporary Work (subclass 400) visas should be lodged at the Australian Embassy in Moscow, or lodged online (where applicable) at least 4 weeks ahead of your travel date. This is in keeping with the Australian Government’s global service standard of 4 weeks for these visa classes.
Applications must be complete and will be processed as quickly as possible within this timeframe. However, processing times may vary depending on a range of factors and personal circumstances. If your application is likely to take longer than 4 weeks, we will inform you.
You should not book flights or make travel commitments until you have a visa to travel to Australia. The department will not be liable for any financial loss incurred by clients whose visa application was finalised later than expected or where an application is unsuccessful
Fraud in Visa Applications
All applicants for visas should be aware that if your application includes false or fraudulently obtained documents, or information that is false or misleading, your application may be refused. This includes information given by you, a member of your family, or another person acting on your behalf. You and your family members may also be barred from entering Australia for three years, which would include being considered for other visa types. This applies to both temporary visas (such as Visitors and Students), and permanent visas (such as Partner, Child and Other Family visas).
Label-free visa arrangements for visa holders
Citizens of all countries who are granted a visa by the Australian Embassy in Moscow are able to travel to Australia without a visa label (sticker) in their passport. The visa record will be held electronically against the passport details of the visa holder. Visa applicants who are granted a visa are not required to send their passport to the Embassy to obtain evidence of their visa.
Applicants who are granted visas will receive a visa grant notice, which explains the validity and conditions of their visa.
Changes to Protection Visa Conditions
From 3 June 2013 all persons who are granted a Protection visa in Australia will be subject to condition 8559. This means that the visa holder will not be able to return to their home country or the country from which they are claiming protection, unless they receive written permission from the Department of Immigration and Citizenship to do so. If written permission is not granted and the person travels, the Protection visa may be cancelled.
Other Important Information
- Relationship Scams - Beware of sending money overseas to a pen-friend or prospective marriage partner you have met over the Internet
- See: Victims' Stories
- Migration Related Scams
- Using Migration Agents - Before engaging a migration agent, we recommend that you read some important information
- Australian Passports - Applications for Australian passports are dealt with by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
Adoption and Surrogacy
Adoption - If you are planning to adopt a child overseas, please be aware that the Visa and Immigration Section of the Australian Embassy in Moscow cannot provide advice or information on the adoption requirements or processes in any country. Please refer to the Fact Sheet on Expatriate Adoptions which you should read carefully.
The Visa and Immigration Office of the Australian Embassy in Moscow handles Australian visa and citizenship applications from nationals and legal residents of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Citizens of all of these countries MUST obtain a visa to travel to and enter Australia.