The Governor General has made a change to the wordings of Public Interest Criterion (PIC) 4020. The change will be in effect from 18 November 2017 and will apply to all visa applications made on or after this date.
Currently, the PIC 4020 reads:
“4020 (1) There is no evidence before the Minister that the applicant has given, or caused to be given, to the Minister, an officer, the Tribunal during the review of a Part-5 reviewable decision, 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”.
After the amendments, PIC 4020(1)(b) will read as follows:
“(b) a visa that the applicant applied for, in the period of 10 years before the application was made”.
This simply means that any document fraud or an attempt to mislead the Department will have its implications on the applicant for the next 10 years, instead of one year, taking away from the applicant the current likelihood of waiting for a year after a fraud before being eligible for another visa application.
Applications made on fraudulent evidence, including those that were withdrawn on being given notice on suspected fraud, will also be captured for the 10 years before the time of application.