What is PIC4020
Most Australian visas have a Public Interest Criteria 4020, also known as PIC 4020, which is a mandatory requirement which must be satisfied in order for the visa to be granted. If you lodge a visa with false information, or if the Minister is not convinced of your identity, the PIC4020 rule can cause your visa to be refused for up to 10 years! Full details are on the Government website.
Which visa types are affected by PIC4020?
The below categories are visas affected by PIC4020
- temporary visas
- student visas
- family visas
- skilled migration visas
- business visas
Additionally, Public Interest Criteria (PIC 4020) will apply to any visa that the applicant has held, or applied for, in the 10 years before the current application was made.
What type of information or document are considered by immigration for PIC4020?
Any information or documents provided to immigration, a skills assessment body or Medical Officer of the Commonwealth in conjunction with a visa application made in the last 10 years which can be taken into account to determine whether you pass the integrity check.
Can PIC4020 still apply if I withdraw my visa prior to a decision being made?
Yes, it includes visas which were refused or withdrawn prior to a decision.
Can a refusal be reviewed?
You might have the right to have the decision reviewed by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal. It is vital to check the decision/refusal record and verify if refusal can be reviewed by MRT/AAT.
What happens to a member of family unit in case of PIC4020 refusal?
Anyone in your application who has you as a member of their family unit might also be refused their visa and may also be subject from being prevented in being granted a new visa, subject to exclusion period.
What is the timeframe to lodge a PIC4020 appeal?
In most cases 70 days from the date of decision record.
What happens if I do not wish to lodge an appeal with AAT?
If no application is lodged with AAT the applicant will be excluded from reapplying for any Australia temporary/permanent visa.
How long is the exclusion period?
Up to 3 years from the date of the decision of visa application.
If the PIC4020 related to identity required, the exclusion period is for 10 years.
What is a PIC4020 waiver?
If Department of Home Affairs (DOHA) is considered in refusing a visa based on PIC4020, the visa applicant is provided with an invitation to comment and provide reasons why a PIC4020 should be applied by immigration.
An application for PIC4020 waiver involves in providing a reason by visa applicant that there are either:
- compelling circumstances affecting Australia
- compelling or compassionate reasons affecting an Australian citizen, permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen.
This also applies if you have been refused a visa for providing a bogus document or information that is false or misleading in the last three years and you apply for a new visa.
Can I apply for a new visa after a PIC4020 refusal?
If you are refused under PIC 4020, you can make a new visa application but the following conditions will apply:
- if you have not left Australia since your application was refused and you do not hold a valid visa, you can only apply for certain specified visas.
- if you are in Australia or outside Australia and hold another visa (besides a Bridging visa) you can make a new visa application.
If you have been refused a visa for providing a bogus document or information that is false or misleading in the last three years and you apply for a new visa (where that visa includes PIC 4020 as part of the criteria), you must provide reasons why the visa should be granted.
These reasons must be either:
- Compelling circumstances affecting Australia, or
- Compelling or compassionate reasons affecting an Australian citizen, permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen.
Arnela Tolic, MARN 1174767 is experienced in making submissions to the immigration department in requesting of PIC 4020 waiver as well as application to AAT for appeal.
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