Victoria Legal Aid

Immigration and migration

Information about different types of visas, becoming an Australian citizen and appealing visa decisions.

Migration, also known as immigration, is when someone comes to Australia from another country:

  • to live permanently
  • to visit temporarily
  • for work or study.

You need a document called a visa to come and stay in Australia from another country, and there are strict rules about visas. If you do not follow the rules, you might not be allowed to stay in Australia.

If you want to migrate to Australia, you must usually apply for a visa before you arrive.

Coming to Australia without a visa

If you arrived in Australia without travel documents, or with false documents, you might be put in detention. You may have to stay in detention until you get a visa or you are removed from Australia.

Get legal advice immediately. Contact our organisation or Refugee LegalExternal Link for information and advice. See get help.

Disclaimer: The material in this print-out relates to the law as it applies in the state of Victoria. It is intended as a general guide only. Readers should not act on the basis of any material in this print-out without getting legal advice about their own particular situations. Victoria Legal Aid disclaims any liability howsoever caused to any person in respect of any action taken in reliance on the contents of the publication.

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Reviewed 07 April 2022