BPAY payments are not instantaneous
Whilst there are many things to think about when lodging your visa application, one thing which you should be acutely aware of is NOT to use BPAY to pay for your online Australian visa application.
The repercussions of using BPAY can be dire, particularly if you have a limited time window in order to get your application in. BPAY payments are not transmitted instantaneously to the Department of Home Affairs, unlike Credit Card Payments or Paypal payments.
Applicant’s visa expires before the BPAY payment was matched to the Visa application
A recent Federal Court case involved a man who lodged his visa application a full day before his visa expired.
He paid his lodgement fee via BPAY but the transfer was not electronically matched to her application by the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) until one-day after his visa expired.
Because of this, the DHA deemed the visa application invalid, as under the regulations and the Migration Act, correct payment must accompany the visa application. As payment was not matched to the application at the time of the visa expiry, the application was not validly made.
Court dismisses case and subsequent appeal
An application to the Federal Circuit Court was dismissed and the visa applicant appealed to the Federal Court.
The Federal Court dismissed the case on the basis that the law clearly stated that any online visa application must have the funds cleared and matched to the application before the application can even be considered.
Consequences of the invalid visa application for the visa applicant
Unfortunately, because his visa had expired, the visa applicant was unlawful, and he was unable to reapply for the same visa.
He would have needed to approach the DHA and apply for a Bridging Visa E to keep his status lawful whilst he appealed the matter. He would have been unable travel throughout the appeal period (since June 2017), and he would have had to apply for work rights.
After all this time waiting on the on failed appeal, he will now have to leave Australia to apply for another visa and wait offshore while it is being processed. It is likely he will be barred for three years form applying for any temporary visas.
He (and his partner) has paid a huge price for using BPAY to save the Credit Card surcharge associated with online visa applications.
We strongly recommend not using BPAY or any funds transfer system that may take an unpredictable amount of time to reach the Department of Home Affairs, especially if you only have a small window of time before your visa expires.
It would be a very lousy reason to lose your chances of obtaining a visa in order stay in Australia, and one which is easily avoidable.
We never lodge visa applications using the BPAY system, and we recommend that you don’t either. Using BPAY to avoid the Credit Card surcharge is simply not worth your future in Australia.
Simple advice? Use a Credit Card to pay for your Australian Visa application online.
Need more advice or assistance with your visa application, or want to know which visa is the best one for you?