Spouse Visas - Unexplained Large Deposits of Money




Check List Using The Regulations As A Template eg - Spouse Visa

Get Enough Sleep

Visa Application And Associated Costs

Preserving Records

Record Keeping And Management - How Long Do Documents Have To Be Kept?

Initial Requirements Regarding Accepting A Retainer

Failure Of Proper File Management Can Lead To Suspension As A Migration Agent


Confidentiality & Notifying The Client Of Complaint Procedure

Give Your Client A Copy Of Everything

Give Your Client The Bad News Immediately

Take Care While On Holidays

Clients & English

Check Special Requirements For Offshore Visas With The Embassy's Or Consulate's Website

Don't Accept Immigration's Assertion That Decisions Have Been Made Properly

Have No Fear Of Appeals

Never Advise Your Client To Make Life Changing Decisions Prior To The Grant Of A Visa & Trust Your Instincts

Before You Set The Fee With Your Client And Before You File A Visa Application

Oral Instructions

What Can Go Wrong If You Don't Record Your Mail Properly

Application Fee For A Visa



Prepare Your Client For The Oath

Client Dress

Policy VS Law

Ideas For Chronologies For Client Files

Immigration Goes Into Hibernation On 30 June Each Year

Australia Closes Down Between Christmas & New Year

Have An Industrial Strength Office Set Up At The Office And At Home

What Is A Permanent Residence Visa?

Note Taking

Translating Documents

General Issues

Practice Together Or Practice In Groups

Time Limits

A Proper Email Account And Email Management

Undercharging And Undercutting On Fees

Tourist Visas

Positioning And Pathways And Fees (Putting All One's Eggs In One Basket)

Email & Fax Communication & Errors With Credit Cards Emerge As Troubling Issues

Preparing A Client For Merit Review Hearings Or Interviews With DIBP

Accountants And Migration Law


Berenguel - Sometimes Time Of Application Criteria Can Be Met At Time Of Decision

Bare Faced Liars & The Fraudsters

Everyone's Doing It

Bridging Visas

Visas Remain Current Until Midnight

Immigration Closes At 4pm

Looking After Secondary Visa Holders In A Visa Cancellation Process

Applying As A Secondary Visa Applicant Onshore When The Primary Visa Applicant Is Offshore

Being Illegal

Essential Prerequisites For A Ministerial Discretion Application

Last Lunge Applications

State And Territory Sponsorship


Believing The Client

Follow Up

Make Peace With The Tax Office

No Obligation On Immigration To Chase Up Information Or Documents From Migration Agents Or Lawyers Representing A Client

Errors In Visa Applications

Spouse Visas - Unexplained Large Deposits of Money

Managing No. 8503 On Tourist Visas

Medical Consent

Statutory Declarations

Merit Review

Tax Deductibility of Migration Advice


Dates On Documents And Names On Documents

Breaking Up Is Hard To Do

Take A Statement

Case Management Software

Work Rights


Check All Past Visa Applications

Revealing Convictions

Visa Holders Being On Their Best Behaviour

Email Communication With Immigration - Delete All Strings

No Without Prejudice Conversations With Immigration

Accounts Managements

What Is A Secondary Visa?

Identify Australian Citizens Who Support An Applicant


Schedule 1 Criteria

Second Thing To Do On Starting A File - Download The Relevant Part Of The Law

First Thing To Do When Starting Any File - Identify Any 'Rights Destroying' Deadlines

Lodging Paper Applications

Social Media & Smart Phones


Disputes About Parentage And Children

Helping People Pass The English Tests

Managing Emails

What Is The Pomodoro Technique?

Immigration Telephones Client

When Is A Visa Application Made In Australia

Apply For A Visa In Australia

No Visa Application Is An Island

The Hammock Principle


The issue of whether a relationship or marriage is contrived pervades many spouse cases. A single large deposit of money or multiple large deposits raises the issue of payment for participating in a contrived marriage or contrived relationship. Such large amounts must be explained with a credible narrative preferably backed by evidence.

Here is what it says in part:

(1) There is no evidence before the Minister that the applicant has given, or caused to be given, to the Minister, an officer, the Migration Review Tribunal, a relevant assessing authority or a Medical Officer of the Commonwealth, a bogus document or information that is false or misleading in a material particular in relation to:

(a) the application for the visa; or

(b) a visa that the applicant held in the period of 12 months before the application was made.

This is infecting so many things. Fraud has always been rife in migration law and practice regrettably.  Clients think they can get away with it.

But Immigration is checking things out more and more and more thoroughly.  Here is one case study.

Client submitted a bogus educational qualification from overseas. Immigration’s overseas post picked it up. The Migration Agent acting swiftly and with some acumen, arranged for the client to withdraw the visa application before it was decided adverse to the client.

The client then submitted a fresh visa application as the client did not now need this educational certificate to meet the criteria.  In fact this is an appropriate rescue strategy for overcoming the effects of PIC 4020.  In fact once one gets the ‘natural justice’ letter warning of the suspect documents and the pending invocation of PIC 4020, the client really has no alternative but to withdraw the visa application and start again, unless there are special reason to push ahead and hope to apply the compelling circumstances argument.

But disaster struck, accidentally the bogus educational qualification from overseas was included in the bundle of material submitted to Immigration in the new visa application! Of course the client had instructed the agent not to submit the document. But as a file management practice point, it is essential that all suspect documents be quarantined from a file.  There may be some need to keep a bogus document for some later use but it should be separated from the main file, both electronically and on paper files. Electronically one should use a separate folder clearly marked ‘Bogus Documents’ to house the bogus documents.  One should also put a password on that folder so that it cannot be opened accidentally. The same should be done with paper files, using a different colour folder (orange or bright red are good colours as in nature these colours are signs of danger) to house the bogus documents and also storing this ‘fraud’ folder away from the main folder.

Of course in the above case, it possibly may be argued that the client did not authorise the agent to lodge the bogus document hence the client had not ‘caused’ it to be given to Immigration.  But this is yet to be tested in the courts.

The important practice point is that PIC 4020 only applies in relation to the visa application before the delegate or to a visa held in the 12 months before the current visa application.

It does mean that an application can be withdrawn and done again without the bogus or suspect material. However this requires if the applicant is still in Australia that the applicant has a substantive visa or is able to apply for a visa without having held a substantive visa (ie some student visas are in that latter category.

Overall some migration advisers are soft on clients in sifting out bogus or suspect material. If anything is suspect one must get to the bottom of it. One will be doing the client a disservice by allowing the client to lodge material which is fraudulent.

Barbara Davidson