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Guest Bexta

OMG! Visa possibly being refused!

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Guest Bexta

We had very bad news yesterday after my OH had his interview with our Case Officer for our De Facto Visa application... we thought everything was going so well too as we only applied last Friday, got a C/O Tuesday and interview held on Wednesday! But then...

 

Out c/o has said she doesn't believe we have been living together for 12 months and now we need to find "compassionate and compelling reasons" why they shoudl waive the 12 month criteris for us! :sad:

 

Our brief history is we moved in together beginning of August 07, my OH had to come back to UK beginning of Oct as his Visa ran out, I had to stay in Oz due to work committments and a wedding but flew out beginning of Jan 08 and we have continued living together ever since. The thing is we queried this with a couple of agents we initially spoke to (tho we submitted it ourselves) and they said it shouldn't be an issue. as we had livied together for 12 months or more and the break was only temporary.

 

Further to that I checked immi.gov.au and it stated on there:

"My job in Australia does not allow me to travel to my partner's country to live there for extended periods. We have been in a relationship for 12 months but lived together for only eight months. Will I be eligible to sponsor my partner to Australia?

You may be eligible. It is recognised that it is possible for the parties to be physically apart for periods of time, due to work or travel commitments, yet committed to a shared life. In assessing a relationship, a number of factors other than periods of physical cohabitation are taken into account."

 

So we though we would be OK!!!! Our c/o was really unfriendly and quite accusatory to my OH actually and she has said unless we provide this other evidence she cannot issue the Visa now and we would have to wait until Jan 09 and then do it all again! The thought of having to do that is just so completely devastating and we are both so homesick and miserable living here we just want to get back to Oz ASAP...

 

I'm getting a letter from my old work stating that I needed to give at leats 4 weeks notice before I left and have asked my friend whose wedding it was to write an email stating that she had me heavily involved in the wedding and she asked me to stay for it... but other than that we don't know what evidence we can possible provide that would help sway our c/o to approve the visa now.

 

Any ideas please??!! And does anyone know, if the Visa is denied now (sob!), do we need to start from scratch again in Jan or can we submit the same paperwork etc?

 

*A very miserable* bexta...

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Guest tony and sheena

Oh Bexta,

 

I don't know anything about this type of visa, but just wanted to wish you luck and hopefully someone who can help will come along soon.

 

Best wishes

Sheena

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Guest ChaznDrew

HI Bexta

 

My partner has just been issued a Defacto Visa but our was pretty straight forward as we have been together for nearly 2 years.

 

Ummmm is there anything with both ur names on from the start of the relationship?? Photo's?? Any other people that can declare u are a legit couple ??? Have u go any phone itineraries from the time u were apart?? Anything u have bought together??

 

I will think of more ??? Ur situation is tricky

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Guest Bexta

Hi ChaznDrew,

We honestly thought ours was quite simple too, considering the information we had to hand! We put LOADS of info into our initial application. Joint home insurance from our place in Oz, the rental agreement, several different bills, those most of those were in individual names, but at the same address. Our c/o said we had a strong case if we were to apply again in Jan, but its just going to be so much more work, especially when we applied on the advice of agents and using the information the Oz Gov gave us themselves!

We gave 5 different stat decs from friends and fam, travel itineraries, photos loads to show we were a genuine and loving couple, but it feels like the c/o has stuck to this one little fact and will not budge from her view on it, even though all the other evidence we submitted shows we are real and continuing... ugh, its so frustrating!

Thanks so much for your advice though, I am very glad for you that yours was so simple!

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Guest ChaznDrew

I hope the information u supply from Australia off ur friend and work will be enough to get u guys over the line. We had huge dramas with our Agent they were so hopeless but there was a light at the end of the tunnel and we hope the same for u guys!!

 

Keep me informed and if i think of anything else i will let you know

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Guest Bexta

Thanks... that's exactly what I hope too!

God knows what we'll do if it's not approved. Its all just so stressful! I don't know how the people on here who have to wait a year or more for their Visa do it!

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"My job in Australia does not allow me to travel to my partner's country to live there for extended periods.

 

Hi,

I only know our daughter and partner had to go through this - but luckily with a 5 year history!!

 

Just wondered if the country/nationality of you partner may have any bearing on the "lattitude" availble in "compassionate reasons".

 

On the otherhand, me and OH have been on the visa trail for nearly 3.5 years - 2 waiting to qualify and 15 months so far and a month to go before we get it in the passports..... waiting till January 09, is not a long time to wait. ( ooopss that sound really negative to you I guess!)

 

Dont suppose she can come to you on a tourist visa to add the missing time!!

 

Chin up

 

 

L.L.

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Guest Bexta

Hi LL,

I think maybe I might have confused you- the text you got from my original post was a FAQ I got off the immi.gov.au website and while our own reasons for being apart was not quite exactly the same, we figured the premise was as it was work/travel committments keeping me in Oz... sigh.

 

Thanks for you advice anyway and yes, you're absolutely right, I probably have no right to complain about waiting around until January as most people on here have to wait months if not years, but I am an Aussie and I know how much better life is over there... it just depresses me, and my OH to think that we might fail on a technicality.

 

It also makes me wonder if the c/o you are assigned has any bearing on stuff like this? I mean maybe our c/o was in a bad mood the morning she read our application? I certainly hope nothing like that bears any influence on whether or not Visa's are approved, but as we feel the issue she has picked us up on is such a minor one, we can't help but wonder a little?

Oh well, cest la vie, right?

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Guest ChaznDrew

How long has the CO given u to produce the evidence? It may be a case where u have to wait for January is it worth being rejected or just holding off for a few more months???

 

I know u would be anxious to get home I am to but would u have to pay the visa fees again??

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Guest Ms_Fi

Have you checked with your CO what will happen if you're refused your visa? Would you be able to apply again in Jan or would you have to wait a set period of time before you reapply?

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Guest Bexta

She said that if we were applying in January 09 we would be approved the Visa straight away, but then she also said she is happy to "reconsider our application" (although she has not given us an official refusal yet) if we can send through the evidence for compelling reason. She has given us the usual 28 days to get this through to her.

 

I haven't asked yet what would happen if she did refuse it, as I am trying to be optimistic in convincing her that we have followed all the rules... it might be worht doing so I guess.

 

Does anyone know if they refuse a Visa do they keep all the documents? I mean, would we have to apply again for an Australia Police Certificate as she currently has the only original!

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You say you moved in together in august last year ... do you have anything regarding your relationship before then... letters, holidays together.. bank account in joint names... invites to parties that name both of you ... anything to suggest your relationship has been on going.


I just want PIO to be a happy place where people are nice to each other and unicorns poop rainbows

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Guest ChaznDrew

I doubt u would have to apply for a new police certificate as its valid for a year i'd be requesting that one back and all ur information if they refuse so you can use it all again in January. Im unsure whether u will have to reappluy with new documentation in January I would highly doubt it but ut never know with immigration.

 

Good luck chicka keep ur chin up

 

xxx

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Guest Bexta

Thanks ChaznDrew, if it does come down to that, I will definitely be asking for all our stuff back! Hopefully it shouldn't be an issue, if she herself has said if we were refused now we could reapply in Jan.

 

Ali- We did send photos and travel tickets from when we went to Borneo on holiday together in June 07 (prior to moving in together). Unfortunately we didn't open a joint bank account in Oz so we could only submit our joint one her as evidence. But seriously we included LOADS of the stuff that everyone one here has suggested in previous posts. I literally scrawled all old posts about Spouse Visas to make sure when we submitted we had everything possible!

 

Our c/o kept saying to my OH how she doesn't even take into consideration the time we were in a relationship without living together, as being in a relationship. And she said she only looks at the previous 12 months from your application, ie Sept 07-Sept 08, which by my logic means that really we could have bee living together for 3 years and then had a 3 month temporary break (like we did from Oct-Dec) and she still would have come back with the same findings... just crazy.

 

Its sounds crazy, but my OH and I actually met at a speed dating night in Feb 07 so I was thinking maybe I could email them and ask them to write a letter confirming we did both attend that night and we did both tick each other so contact details we passed along... worth a shot? Even though she said she is not interested in the time we were together as a couple, but not as a De Facto?

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I'm surprised at that as I know that my brother submitted letters he and his girlfriend (now wife) had written to each other whilst she was still in Aus and he was in the UK - he'd had to return because of his visa.

 

Ali x


I just want PIO to be a happy place where people are nice to each other and unicorns poop rainbows

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Guest Bexta

Yeah we were completely shocked too. This totally came out of left-field for us. We did loads of reasearch and sent along plenty of evidence to show that we were a real couple and in a genuine and continuing relationship. I sent along al my mobile records from Oct-Dec showing how much I spent on International calls and Al (my OH) did the same for when he was here.

 

It is so annoying because I know we should technically be right but its hard to argue with a c/o who just kept saying the same thing to my OH over and over. He was trying to point all this stuff out to her but she had it in her head that we were apart for 3 months so therefore didn't qualify! Which is so silly as the immi website says that they realise temporary absences apart were sometimes unavoidable!

 

We even sent in my plane ticket booking which was made in early October, showing I clearly had intention of going to the UK. And we also have our rental agreement, which we BOTH signed in November 2007, showing that I was fully intending to be a UK resident there and then it was just due to work and travel committments I couldn't be there! Ugh! *pulls hair out!*

 

Maybe I should show my c/o this thread and that may help convince we are right and she is wrong?

Hehe... =)

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Guest Gollywobbler

Hello Bexta

 

I have no hands-on knowledge of Spouse/Partner visas. My advice is based solely on common-sense and a little general knowledge of Australian Immi Law.

 

Because you are an Australian Citizen, DIAC do have a duty to help you if they reasonably can. I would ask them to produce a copy of the relevant sections of the PAMs for you to study and consider. The PAMs are the Policy documents that guide the CO's pen, basically. She is undoubtedly parroting from the PAMs, possibly without understanding them fully and looking at where her ability to exercise discretion might apply.

 

Ask her what your Appeal rights will be if she refuses this visa, as well. I have a feeling that you would not necessarily "have to wait until January." You might be able to take DIAC's decision to the Migration Review Tribunal instead. The MRTwould review whether or not a refusal is lawful, and if it is at least lawful then the MRT would consider the "merits" - which is pretty much the Policy. Basically, the MRT says:

 

Right - we have the discretion to reconsider this application and see how we would decide it if we were the processing people. If they find they would have exercised the disretions more generously than the CO did, the MRT can substitute its own decision for that made by the original CO. It costs $1,400 to appeal to the MRT and you get that back if the MRT support you and alter the original decision.

 

Also, if this CO thinks she needs more evidence then what evidence does she want? It is no use them saying, "I am not satisfied" without telling you what would satisfy them and why.

 

Have you asked the CO to ask a Senior Migration Officer to consider the whole thing, so that TWO of them have exercised whatever discretions the legislation might give them? They have SMOs in London where this application is being handled, presumably?

 

Australian Immigration Fact Sheet 35. One-Year Relationship Requirement

 

I quote:

 

In assessing a relationship, a number of factors other than periods of physical cohabitation are taken into account.

 

 

The PAMs tell them what these factors are. So:

 

1. Copy of the PAMs themselves, please; and

2. Which of the bits in the PAMs is/are giving the CO a headache?

 

(PAM stands for Policy or Procedure Advice Manual and there is more than one Volume. They are not available on-line for free. You are entitled to see the relevant parts, though, in this situation and you can mutter Freedom of Information Act if need be.)

 

Have you considered asking a different Agent to act for you to see whether s/he can talk DIAC into changing their minds?

 

Best wishes

 

Gill

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Guest Bexta

Hi Gill,

 

I'm not a religious person but god bless you for your post... I will get onto all of that first thing tomorrow to make sure that we cover all possible bases before she does turn around and refuse us.

 

Thank you so, so much I could just hug you! *squeeze*

 

Will keep you posted with our progress... if everyone else could keep their fingers crossed for some good news soon. THANK YOU GILL!!!

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Guest OldiesRUs

Once more, SuperGill to the rescue!!!!

 

Jean:wubclub:

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Guest ChaznDrew

Hey Bexta

 

Any updates on ur situation ?? I hope things work out for you and your partner

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Guest Bexta

Hiya,

 

I've emailed our CO and asked a few questions as per Gills suggestions (eg can we have a look at the PAM's and what are our appeal rights if you DO decide to refuse the Visa etc)... but (surprise surprise) I've had no reply from the CO yet. I sent the email last Friday and then sent a follow up -just making sure this didn't get lost in cyberspace- email on Monday. But I figured I'll give her until tomorrow to get back to us and then I'll call. =)

 

I've also gone a compiled an email ready to shoot off to her with our "compelling and compassionate" reasons why we should be granted the Visa. I'm actually ready to send that now, but I want to wait for her reply just in case these PAM's have something usefule we can use in terms on knowing what evidence we should submit.

 

I've gone and got my terms of employment from my previous job which states that I needed to give atleats 4 weeks notice and my old boss (bless her!) has also written a letter stating that as I had asked for a years LWOP I would not be granted this until I had successfully completed two events I was responsible for, which were held in late November and early December last year. So basically saying that I HAD to stay at work until then else I wouldn't have been able to get my LWOP. I've also got an email from my friend whose wedding was in January and she has said that she asked me to stay in the country for the wedding and as I was an bridesmaid I had duties to her prior to the wedding etc etc. We've also pointed out a few other things that we have already submitted evidence for (eg we sent out dog to the UK too and this had to be organised and Al couldn't do it in time before he left so I was responsible etc) so I'm really hoping that once we give her this stuff she's going to have no choice but to grant us the Visa. But we'll just have to wait and see I guess.

 

Will let you know what she gets back to us with and how we go from there though! Thanks so much for thinking of us too, means a lot to know other people know what you are going through!

=)

Bec

x

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