Character Requirements​ For Australian Visas


According to Australian government immigration requirement, no matter on which visa,  everyone wishing to enter Australia must be of good character and will be assessed against the character requirements. As part of your visa application, you are likely to be required to provide a police clearance certificate or other evidence to satisfy the character requirements.

 How Your Character may be Assessed 


You cannot not pass the character test if:

  1. You have any serious criminal record, i.e. you have been sentenced to 12 months or more in prison, or multiple sentences that add up to more than 12 months in prison.

  2. You are or have been a member of a group or organisation, or had or have an association with a    person, group or organisation that the Minister for Immigration has reasons to suspect of              involvement in criminal conduct

  3. Or the Minister for Immigration reasonably suspects that you have been involved in human       smuggling /trafficking, genocide, a war crime, a crime against humanity, a crime involving torture or slavery, or a crime that is of serious international concern, (you may or may not have been convicted of such an offence)

  4. Your past and present criminal or general conduct shows that you are not of good character

  5.  There is a risk that while you are in Australia you would:

  • Engage in criminal conduct

  • Pose a potential danger to a segment of the Australian community

  • Cause discord in the Australian community or in a part of it

    6. You have been convicted of, or found guilty or had a charge proven for one or more sexually                 based offences involving a child

    7. You are subject to an adverse security assessment by the Australian Security Intelligence 

    8. You are subject to an Interpol notice.

 If you are applying for temporary or permanent migration 


For the Australian Government to determine if you are of good character, you might be asked to provide police certificates for each country you have lived in for 12 months or more, over the last 10 years (calculated immediately before the time the visa application is lodged), since turning 16 years of age.

You must declare all recorded offences in your visa application. 

 Police certificates 


Police certificates are also known as a penal clearance certificate in some countries. If you need information regarding penal clearance/police certificates for a citizenship application refer to the information on the Good character and offences page on the citizenship website.


If you are over the age of 16 and have lived in any of the countries listed on this page for a total of one year or more in the last 10 years, you might be asked to get a police certificate from that country.

The certificate must cover the period of time from the issue date back to the age you ceased to be a minor, or must cover the whole time you were in a country.

For immigration purposes a police certificate is deemed to be valid for 12 months from the issue date.

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