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soc.culture.australian FAQ (Part 1 of 6) (monthly posting)

( Part1 - Part2 - Part3 - Part4 - Part5 - Part6 )
[ Usenet FAQs | Web FAQs | Documents | RFC Index | Cities ]
Archive-name: australian-faq/part1
Last-modified: 2 April 1996
Version: 3.10

See reader questions & answers on this topic! - Help others by sharing your knowledge

PART I (this posting)
1.About soc.culture.australian
2.How to find Australians, Australian Information
  2.1 on the net
      2.1.1 Public access sites 
      2.1.2 Gopher and WWW
      2.1.3 Weather
      2.1.4 Finding people
      2.1.5 Other
  2.2 elsewhere
  3.1 Australian citizenship
  3.2 Dual Citizenship of other countries
  3.3 Visas
      3.3.1 For Foreigners in Australia
      3.3.2 For Australians in other Countries
  3.4 Immigration
      3.4.1 Addresses
      3.4.2 Criteria and Points System 
      3.4.3 Spouse/fiance(e) immigration              
      3.4.4 Employers sponsoring foreign employees
  3.5 Emigrants
PART II (separate posting)
4.Coming to Australia
  4.1 Quarantine
  4.2 Standards
  4.3 Cars
       4.3.1 Car Insurance 
  4.4 Shipping Information
  4.5 Miscellaneous        
  4.6 Australians Returning Home
5.Studying in Australia
  5.1 Overview of Australian Higher Education
  5.2 Postgraduate Study
  5.3 Miscellaneous Questions
  5.4 "Classification" of Australian Universities 
  5.5 Academic Addresses
  5.6 Australian Medical Schools
6.For Australians Overseas
  6.1 Radio Australia
  6.2 Newspapers:
  6.3 Australiana in the USA
  6.4 Video Conversion 
  6.5 Expatriate organisation
  6.6 Oz News
PART III (separate posting)
  7.1 Pre-Europeans
  7.2 European Discovery
  7.3 European settlement
      7.3.1 Penal Colony
      7.3.2 Gold Rush
      7.3.3 Post WWI Immigration
      7.3.4 Miscellaneous
           (includes Tasmanian Aborigines)
  7.4 Political History
      7.4.1 Independence
      7.4.2 Aboriginal Voting
  7.5 Wars
      7.5.1 Boer War
      7.5.2 World War I
      7.5.3 World War II
      7.5.4 Korea, Vietnam and others
  7.6 National heroes/Notable Australians   
  7.7 Miscellaneous
  8.1 Political System 
  8.2 Voting System 
  8.3 Current governments
  8.4 Taxation
  8.5 The Independence Debate
  8.6 Mabo
  8.7 Health Care
      8.7.1 Medicare
      8.7.2 Medicare Levy
      8.7.3 Doctors
      8.7.4 Fees
      8.7.5 Public Hospitals
      8.7.6 Private Hospitals
      8.7.7 Aged Care
      8.7.8 Skin Cancer
  8.8 Economic Information
PART IV (separate posting)
9.Geography, Natural History
  9.1 Geographic information
  9.1 Cities and Population
  9.2 National Holidays
  9.3 Weather 
  9.4 Flora
      9.4.1 Extinct Species
  9.5 Fauna
      9.5.1 Monotremes
      9.5.2 Marsupials
      9.5.3 Tasmanian devils and Tasmanian Tigers
      9.5.4 Venomous Fauna
      9.5.5 Extinct and Endangered Species
      9.5.6 Koalas
  9.6 National Symbols
      9.6.1 Flag
      9.6.2 Coat of arms
10.Australian Life
  10.1 Housing
  10.2 Schooling
  10.3 Public Transport
  10.4 Roads
  10.5 Prices
  10.6 Shopping Hours
  10.7 Crime
  10.8 Sport
PART V (separate posting)
  11.1 Money      
  11.2 Jet-lag
  11.3 Responses to 3 questions      
  11.4 Travel Reports and Recommendations
       11.4.1 A Trip description 
       11.4.2 Uluru (Ayers Rock)
       11.4.3 Places of interest in Tasmania
       11.4.4 Accommodation tips to the low budget motorhome traveler (BB)
       11.4.5 Adelaide and SA
       11.4.6 Touring Australia by Motorcycle [C]
       11.4.7 Cheap travel agent [RM]
       11.4.8 Places of Interest in Melbourne
       11.4.9 Australia from south to north [JO]
  11.5 Advice for Australians in ....
       11.5.1 United Kingdom
       11.5.2 United States
       11.5.3 Canada
  12.1 Australian pronunciation
  12.2 Australian spelling
  12.3 Australian slang, word origins
  12.4 Australian word usage (misc)
PART VI (separate posting)
  13.1 Recipes and food
       13.1.1 Vegemite
       13.1.2 Sweets recipes: anzac biscuits, pavlova, lamingtons,
                                chocolate crackles
       13.1.3 Meat Pies, Damper, Galah, pumpkin soup
       13.1.4 Misc
  13.2 Songs 
       13.2.1 "Waltzing Matilda",  by Banjo Paterson (3 versions :-)
       13.2.2 "Advance Australia Fair", National Anthem
       13.2.3 "And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda", Eric Bogle
       13.2.4  "Tie me kangaroo down" (Rolf Harris)
  13.3 Literature
       13.3.1 Fiction
       13.3.2 Poetry
	- "My Country" by Dorothea McKellar
	- "The Man From Snowy River" by A.B. (Banjo) Paterson
       13.3.3 Children's Literature
       13.3.4 Non-Fiction
  13.4 Films 
  13.5 Music
       13.5.1 Classical
       13.5.2 Pop
       13.5.3 Jazz
       13.5.4 Other
   13.6 Opera
   13.7 Ballet
   13.8 Theatre
14. Contributors

A major reorganisation has been done (June 1994) and some sections are
incomplete. Contributions welcome - send to Stephen Wales,  



The soc.culture.australian newsgroup was established in November 1990,
thanks largely to Ann Nicholson's persistent efforts.  It is devoted
to the discussion of all aspects of Australian culture.  Iain Sinclair
put together the first FAQ for this group. Ann Nicholson took it over
in early 1993. She did a major reorganisation in June 1994 before
handing it over to Stephen Wales ( in July 1994.

This FAQ is generally posted to s.c.a in the first week of each month.
If I'm travelling on business or otherwise detained, I'll post it as 
soon as possible after the first week of the month.

There are many other related newsgroups.  If your article is more
appropriate for another newsgroup, please post it there first --
you'll get the audience you're looking for.

news.announce.newusers		general netiquette			what to see, when to go, how much, etc.			\ where to find Australians on the net
aus.wanted			/		\ job-hunting			/                     Australian Computer Society - sorta like IEEE                     Electronic Frontiers Australia - like EFF
talk.politics.guns		all traffic about gun-related issues   \*		| sport results, chest-beating, etc.			/		New Zealand life, culture, etc.
aus.politics                    \                       |
aus.culture.ultimo		| Australian life, culture, etc.
aus.films                       |                          /

If you're unable to post to or read the aus hierarchy, talk to
your system administrator about getting a feed. Since many people
cannot get a feed for the aus hierarchy, cross-postings to s.c.a.
and aus.* are welcome.

Even though I maintain this FAQ, I cannot find missing friends or
relatives last seen in Australia, arrange news or mail feeds, arrange
access to the World Wide Web, track down Australian Government
Departments or give information on government policy so please don't
ask.  If you do, I'll politely say 'No' and hope you are not offended.

However, I welcome all comments (both complimentary and critical), and
additions or updates are always welcome.  You can have your name added
to the list of contributors and get your 5 seconds of net.fame :-)

This FAQ for soc.culture.australian (and quite a few other newsgroups)
can be FTP'ed from the site.0.  The FAQ files are located in
the /usenet/FAQs/soc.culture.australian directory. 

The FAQ is also at
There's also a copy of the FAQ for obtaining public Net access in
Australia in that same directory.

The rtfm archive is updated after each posting.  You should always be able
to get the latest copy from there.

There is also a hypertext version available through the World Wide Web.
Nathan Edwards ( is making this available after
each posting at - 
please refer any problems or comments to him about this service.
If you have any additions or corrections to make after reading the
html version, please send them directly to me (
and not to Nathan.

This FAQ is (C) Copyright 1995 Iain Sinclair/Ann Nicholson/Stephen Wales
and contributors.

Permission is given to freely copy/distribute this FAQ providing the following
conditions are met :

- It is distributed in full without modifications/additions/deletions
- The date of last posting/last modification is kept so that recipients
  know how out of date it is
- The current maintainer's email address is included so updates may be 
  mailed out if required
- You do not intend to make a profit from the distribution.

Whilst some care is taken to ensure that the information contained in 
this document is as up to date as possible, the maintainer will accept
no responsibility for any damages the reader may incur from taking this
information as gospel truth.  Information contained in this document 
such as immigration criteria and quarantine regulations should be used 
as guidelines only.  For the most up to date and accurate information,
contact the relevant Australian Federal Department or your nearest
Australian Embassy or Consulate-General.

I can not also guarantee the accuracy off the information in this
document.  I include what is sent to me, as long as it sounds reasonable.
If I had to verify *every* bit of information contained herein, I'd
never get any real work done.

[Sorry for the above disclaimer...but a friend warned me I'd better 
 have one....just in case.......]

This FAQ is largely a compilation of posts, comments and email from the
readership of this newsgroup.  It will only continue to be a useful
document if the readership helps keep it up to date.

Please send errors, omissions or corrections to me, Stephen Wales, at


2.1 Addresses on the Net

2.1.1 Public Access Sites 

The latest copy of the Network Access in Australia FAQ is available from

Send mail to for a listing of public access
sites in Australia, with Subject: Network Access in Australia, and
First line in Body: Network Access in Australia

These are all dialup sites; most should offer news and mail for some
fee (UNIX, unless stated otherwise).  APANA (the Australian Public
Access Network Association) covers some of these.  For more info on
other sites in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Brisbane, potential
users can mail

Melb:  Cloud [msdos]
Melb:  Werple           03 888 1726
Syd:   Krazilec         02 837 1183
-      Pegasus            066 85 6789
       email (Syd)

Pegasus is now based in Brisbane and has an (07) dial-up number. It is
fully internetted and you can telnet to it (telnet:// or within
Australia reach it via AUSPAC x.25 switching (but this method is
billed at a higher rate).  They are a member of the APC just like
GreenNet or the Web. [Scot]

[JS] DIALix is a commercial Internet access provider, with access for
business, personal, and student use. DIALix now offers live Internet
services (ftp, telnet, talk, finger etc) in addition to e-mail and
Usenet news groups.  Charges are 1c/minute for connection and 1c/1000
bytes for non-DIALixNet (Internet/AARNet) traffic. All accounts are
"in advance". Minimum annual usage of Business $250, Personal $80,
Student $10. Permanent live DIALixNet and Internet connections also
available. Further info from:

                Sydney (N.S.W.)                 Perth (W.A.)
  Phone (24hrs) 02 948 6995 -> Justin           09 244 2433 -> Jeff
  Modems        02 948 6918                     09 244 3233
  Mobile        018 491 642                     018 638 249
  Snail Mail    PO Box 153,                     Box 7, 145 Sydney Rd,
                Farlight NSW 2094               Doubleview WA 6018

Information on network access in Australia is available by automatic
reply be sending mail to, put together by
Zik Saleeba. [JL]

2.1.2 Gopher and WWW

There is now an Australiana Gopher open in Canada, maintained by Tim
Littlejohn (

Name=MegaGopher, Type=1, Port=70, Path=,

Stuff of interest on the MegaGopher includes:
- Current and Back issues of "OzNews", News summaries from Australian
  newspapers (thanks to Brad Alexander, Ann Nicholson and Shane Dunn)
- Links to Other OzGophers
- Oz Sports news (footy, cricket and Motorcycle racing)
- Interesting Oz Stats
- Latest FAQ

Tim writes: "My collection is small but growing and it's definitely
worth a perusal!  If you have any interesting Oz information you want
to see on the gopher, please let me know."

[ NOTE: As of November, 1995, I have information that Tim has relocated
  back to Australia ( and is no longer maintaining
  this gopher.  However, I will leave the reference here for the 
  time being.....SW ]

"aus" newsgroups seem to be available on the following gopher: [IR]
gopher 4320
  -->   2.  USENET News/
  -->   3.  aus/


The Guide is a hypermedia (= hypertext + multimedia) book that draws
together a comprehensive range of up-to-date information about
Australia. It available on-line via World Wide Web at this URL:

The Guide distills information available on the Web into an organised
collection of pointers to useful information, such as:
- Statistics about Australia and the surrounding region; 
- Interactive maps
- Current weather forecasts and satellite images
- The environment, including flora and fauna
- Direct links to all Australian Web and Gopher services
- Postcodes and telephone information
- Travel advice
- General information about Australian society and culture

The editors are: David G. Green (, 
                 Jim Croft      ( 

* Australian Newsletter

There is a newsletter called "Word From Down Under" published out of
LA.  The publisher is Neil Brandom.  He is an Aussie living in LA.  It
contains all the latest info on Oz.  Subscriptions for 26 issues cost
$34.95US.  You can contact Neil at or write to
him at:
	Word From Down Under
	P.O. Box 5434
	Balboa island
	CA 92662

* Other sites

Australian Embassy Washington DC
CIA page for demographic info

2.1.3 On-line Weather Information [IC]

It's possible to find out the current weather for any state of
Australia from the Victorian Bureau of Meteorology via telnet.

% telnet 55555
|           ************ VIC WEATHER - MAIN MENU ************
|           1  = CURRENT MELB FORECAST
|           2  = CURRENT VIC FORECAST
|           [...] 
|           9  = INTERSTATE FORECASTS .................(menu)
|enter choice => 1
|***********************START MELBOURNE FORC*********************
| Forecast for Melbourne issued by the Bureau of Meteorology Melbourne
| at 2145 on 21/09/1993 for WEDNESDAY.
ie Typical Melbourne Weather :-) [IC]
| MIN = 8  MAX = 16
| OUTLOOK THURSDAY.  FINE.                              MAX = ABOUT 17
| OUTLOOK FRIDAY.    FINE.                              MAX = ABOUT 19
| OUTLOOK SATURDAY.  MAINLY FINE.                       MAX = ABOUT 19
| MELB       MELBOURNE CITY           10.5

GOPHER: The Bureau of Meteorology has just set up a Gopher server to
provide forecast information for each state and territory around
Australia.  Currently only textual information is available, but we
hope to add charts and satellite images sometime in the future.  The
server is known as "" and should be accessible
through AARNET at the normal Gopher port (i.e port 70).  Please note :
This service is initially purely experimental and will not be
supported outside normal office hours. Contact : Justin Baker, Central
Operations and Systems Branch, Bureau of Meteorology, Melbourne,
Australia e-mail :

There's also another gopher with Australian weather, at, the Austin hospital in Melbourne.
(Search general, then weather.)  I found this on a gopher menu at
Michigan State University. [AE]

2.1.4 Finding people

* Currently about 30 academic institutions in Australia offer Gopher
servers. If you have access to gopher you can use these servers to
examine local email directories. Unfortunately this facility appears
to be restricted to educational institutions, there's nothing
available in the hierarchy.  [2/93, CP]

* For organizations, it's best to use nslookup (read the manual pages
first).  Example session:
    % nslookup
    > server
    > ls
There's also the information posted in comp.mail.maps occasionally --
most of it is dated, but some of it might be helpful.

* For people, mail to with "send
usenet-addresses/[name]" in the body of the message.  If [name]
has posted to Usenet in the last few months, the mail server will
send back a list of matches.  Otherwise, try:
    telnet, login as netfind.
    telnet NIC.DDN.MIL, login as whois.

(telnet://  telnet://NIC.DDN.MIL)

(Not very useful -- user has to explicitly register with the server.)

* Another resource which is slowly being developed is the X.500
directory system. Gateways into this system can be found on many
gopher servers both within and outside Australia (e.g. there is one
accessible from the gopher at Monash university). The system
currently contains address information for about 80 commercial,
academic and scientific organisations.

2.1.5 Other

* Information on extinct, endangered, and vulnerable species available
from the Environmental Resources Information Network gopher at ANU.

* The Australian Computer Society national office is now on-line: [JL]

Chief Executive Officer:
Business Manager:       
Overseas Membership:   
PA to the CEO:        
Examination Coordinator:
Membership Data Maintenance:
National Conference Manager:
National Membership Manager:

(Originally Posted by Tom Worthington, Director of the Community
Affairs Board Australian Computer Society Inc., e-mail: 7/22/93)

2.2 Other Addresses

* Most reasonable libraries should stock the "College Collection on
Microfiche", which contains copies of faculty handbooks/catalogs from
Australian Universities and Colleges of Advanced Education.  Large
libraries should also have copies of recent Australian telephone

* There is also an English(?) publication, the "Commonwealth
Universities Yearbook", that has summaries of the programs and staff
of Australian and other Commonwealth universities.  This appears to be
a standard reference and widely available.

* If you need to get in touch with someone pretty dramatically, try
sending a wild fax to 'Tonight Live' (a poor 'Letterman' clone, +61 3
690 8749).

* The address of the Australian Computer Society is:
	Australian Computer Society     Tel: (02) 211 5855
	National Office                 Fax: (02) 281 1208
	PO Box 319
	NSW 2010


Disclaimer: The information in this section may not be complete, or
correct, or up to date. Contact the Australian Embassy or Consulate in
your country for up to date and accurate immigration information.  If
you still want commentary from within Australia, write to:

The Department of Immigration & Ethnic Affairs 
Canberra, ACT

and inclose an international reply coupon or similar with your request
for information.

3.1 Australian Citizenship

Informally, you are an Australian citizen if one of the following applies:
- you are born in Australia
- you are born overseas to Australian parents and they register your birth
- you become a naturalised Australian
- you don't do anything to give up your citizenship

3.2 Australian (Dual) Citizenship [CW]

Here are some excerpts form the "Hints for Australian Travellers"
booklet produced by the Dept. of Foreign Affairs - its the little
booklet you get when you get your passport (at least it was a year
ago...). Portions in [...] are my comments. [CW]

* Nationality or Citizenship

Each country is free to determine who it will regard as its citizens,
and under what conditions its citizenship can be acquired or lost.
Citizenship laws are often complex and they can be quite different
from Australian laws.  In many countries, for example, citizenship is
not considered to be lost simply because the person has acquired
Australian citizenship.  The laws of some countries require people who
wish to renounce their citizenship to make formal written application
to do so.  Because of such laws many Australian citizens are also
citizens of other countries and therefore, possess what is
internationally referred to as "dual nationality".

[translation - dual citizenship is possible; whether or not you retain
your original citizenship upon becoming an Australian depends on the
laws of the original country.]

* Dual Nationality

Australian citizens who hold another citizenship are likely to be
those who:
o   were not born in Australia;
o   were born in Australia but had one or both parents or grandparents
    who were not born in Australia;
o   are married to a person with another citizenship.

[stuff deleted about being citizen of certain countries may make
you subject to certain laws if you return...]

* Loss of Australian Citizenship

Australia provides in its own citizenship law that an Australian
citizen, who is 18 years of age or over, who does an act or thing, the
sole or dominant purpose of which is to acquire the citizenship of
another country, ceases to be an Australian citizen from the date he
or she becomes a citizen of that country.

If you marry a citizen of a foreign country you may, under the law of
that country, automatically become a citizen of that country. Under
these circumstances you will not lose your Australian citizenship
provided you are not required to take any further action yourself (eg.
registration) to acquire your spouse's citizenship.

If you lose Australian citizenship as a result of doing an act or
thing to acquire another citizenship, you can apply to regain it by
grant any time after 12 months from the date of loss, provided you are
in Australia and have been present there as a resident for 12 months
in the 2 years immediately prior to lodging your application.
Alternatively, you can apply to resume Australian citizenship by
making a declaration to the Minister for Immigration, Local Government
and Ethnic Affairs that at the time you did the act or thing:

o you did not know that by doing it you would cease to be an
  Australian citizen; or
o if you had not done it, you would have suffered significant
  hardship or detriment.

The person making the declaration must:

o have been legally present in Australia for a period, or periods,
  amounting in aggregate to not less than 2 years; and
o intend to continue to reside in Australia or, if living overseas,
  intend to return to reside in Australia within 3 years of making the
  declaration; and
o have maintained a close and continuing association with Australia
  whilst abroad.

If the Minister believes the statement is true, he may register the
declaration and you may become an Australian citizen again.

Persons needing up-to-date information should consult the Department
of Immigration, Local Government and Ethnic Affairs or an Australian
mission overseas.

A child under 18 years of age loses Australian citizenship if his/her
responsible parent or guardian ceases to be an Australian citizen, and
o he/she possesses another citizenship at the time, and
o his/her other responsible parent is not an Australian citizen
  at the time.

Should you lose Australian citizenship before your 18th birthday, as a
result of a responsible parent ceasing to be an Australian citizen,
you can, within one year after your 18th birthday (or later if special
circumstances apply), make a declaration that you wish to resume
Australian citizenship on the date the declaration is registered.

Anyone who loses Australian citizenship is no longer entitled to hold
an Australian passport. If you think you may acquire another
nationality in some way, you should seek advice about the effect this
would have on your Australian nationality from Australian authorities.

* Children born overseas

A child born outside Australia may be registered as an Australian
citizen by descent at the time of birth of the child.  Registration
must be made within 18 years of the child's birth by a responsible
parent or guardian.  Applications can be obtained from any Australian
mission overseas or the department of Immigration (etc.) in Australia.

[translation - if an Australian deliberately acquires citizenship of a
foreign country, they lose citizenship for at least a year... if it is
involuntary then there is no problem...]

[SW] Personal experience on dual citizenship for Australians with
children born abroad.  The child automatically has the citizenship of
the foreign country. To register as an Australian by descent, you have
to provide originals of both parents birth certificates, the child's
birth certificate, the parent's marriage certificate (if appropriate)
and parent's passports.  Send all of this plus the correct form and
the fee ($80 USD in the USA - rate as of May 1993) to the appropriate
consulate for the region you live in and then eventually you get a
Certificate of Australian Citizenship by Descent for the child.  To
get a five (5) year child's passport you must present yourself (in
Person) at a Consulate or Embassy with the passport photos, the
application form and the appropriate endorsement on the photos (and
the Citizenship certificate of course). They'll then give you the

[MJ] This is not always true. A country gets to decide who it will
regard as its citizens. Basically there are two ways of doing this:
you can do it by birth (ie you are a citizen of a country if you are
born there) or you can do it by descent (if your parent(s) were citizens
of another country then you are a citizen of that country). Most countries
have a combination of the two systems. For instance, if you are born in the
US, you are a US citizen by right. If you are born out of the US to US
parent(s) (providing that the parent(s) have lived in the US at some point)
then you are a US citizen. However, not all countries operate like this.
Germany for instance operates entirely by descent. It is possible to be
born in Germany, only speak German and have never left Germany in your life
but not be a German citizen, and this is indeed the case for many people
of Turkish origin in Germany. A very similar situation is the case for
people of Korean origin in Japan. 
	Australia is closer to the other extreme. I do not know if birth
in Australia confers an automatic right to citizenship (the key question
is whether being born in Australia to parents who are illegal immigrants
entitles you to Australian citizenship). However, AFAIK you must _register_
the birth of a child overseas if that child is to be an Australian citizen.
This is unusually strict. Most countries give citizenship to children
in such cases. Registration is not necessary. This leads to an important
question, which is what happens when Australian parents have a child 
in a country that does not confer citizenship automatically on the child
and do not register the birth. Does the child have any citizenship at all?
There is an international (UN, I think, although I forget which one) decree
which states that countries should wherever possible prevent the birth of 
stateless people (those without any citizenship). Therefore, many countries 
have laws that state that children of citizens of that country who do not 
receive any other citizenship at birth shall receive the citizenship
of their parents regardless of the circumstances. (For instance, British
citizenship is given automatically to the children of people born in Britain,
but is not given to the children of British citizen not born in Britain
(ie it is one generation only). However, if the child of a British 
citizen born outside Britain would receive no other citizenship, then 
British citizenship is given to the child (ie if other citizenships are
not given to the children, British citizenship can be passed on to any
number of generations). The question is does Australia have such a 
law? If Australian parents have a child in Germany, does that child
receive Australian citizenship even if the birth is not registered?

* Joint US/Australian from a US perspective 

[ZS] The situation with USA citizenship is that the US constitution
says that anyone born or naturalised in the USA is a citizen.  US
citizenship is a right, not a privilege.  US citizenship cannot be
taken away from you against your will.  However, you still have the
right to renounce it, and other countries often require you to do so
in order to become naturalised.  This used to be the case in Australia
up till 1986.  The oath of citizenship used to include the phrase
`renouncing all other allegiance'.  When the oath was changed in 1986,
it became possible for US citizens to become naturalised Australians
without losing their US status.

The US doesn't like it, and for many years the local US consulates
actively tried to bamboozle USAns into renouncing their US citizenship
if they became Australians.  If you sign anything acknowledging that
you have renounced, or give away your US passport, or anything of that
nature, the USA will assume that you have voluntarily renounced, and
it's up to you to go to court and prove otherwise.

I was born in the USA, have lived here since the age of six, and was
naturalised in 1989.  The Department of Immigration demanded that I
turn in my US passport, because they had an agreement with the US
embassy to do so, and return the passports to the embassy.  I insisted
that I didn't want to lose my US citizenship, and they refused to
process my application until I gave over my passport.  They said if I
needed it before the naturalisation went through, I could get it back,
so after a long argument I gave them my passport, and then on the day
before my naturalisation ceremony I went in and asked for the return
of my US passport.  On the form they gave me, under `reason', I ticked
`other', and wrote that I wanted it back because I didn't want to lose
it.  I don't know whether they read the form or not, but I got the
passport back.

Then I got a letter from the US consulate.  The Department had
informed them of my naturalisation, and they asked me to fill in a
questionnaire, with the questions slanted to produce answers that
would constitute voluntary renunciation.  I sent them a letter
explaining why I refused to fill in the questionnaire, and setting out
quite clearly the circumstances.  I regarded the very fact that I had
my passport as the greatest proof that I wanted to keep it.  I got a
letter that my case was on hold.

A few months ago I went in to the consulate to renew my passport, and
they were a bit more helpful.  The attitude seems to have changed in
the past few years.  They still made me fill in the same
questionnaire, but I did it in front of them, explaining verbally my
objections and putting down N/A all over the place, and waited there
until I got an official determination that I retain my citizenship.  I
probably made a nuisance of myself, but I insist on my constitutional
rights.  If they don't like it, let them change the constitution.

The dual citizenship FAQ is available : (from Rich Wales) [no relative -ed]

==> on the World Wide Web,

==> via Internet anonymous FTP from as the two files
    /home/richw/dualcit.txt and /home/richw/dualcit2.txt

==> via e-mail to me (; put "Subject: send dualcit"
    in the header of your message

..The US State Department now says that it will assume that a US
citizen intends to =retain= his US citizenship if he (1) is
naturalized in a foreign country, (2) takes a routine oath of
allegiance to a foreign country, or (3) accepts foreign government
employment that is of a "non-policy-level" nature.  A person in such a
situation will eventually be asked to fill out a State Department
questionnaire on the subject (e.g., the next time he/she applies for
renewal of a passport); but unless he/she affirmatively intended to
give up US citizenship, no action will be taken to revoke said

The minus side of retaining US citizenship is that the IRS retains
rights to tax worldwide income, and say you must file even when the
deductions cancel out the tax. I have met many US citizens living
outside the US who ignore this - how does this work out when they
apply for passport renewals?

[Any US citizens in Australia care to comment on this last question ? -SW]

* Carol C Denehy <> replied to my above question with :

In reply to the comments on dual citizenship.

I was born an American citizen and lived in the US for the first
43 years of my life. I emigrated and married an Australian citizen.
I now hold a public service job which requires me to be an Australian
citizen.  I have read the document on dual citizenship for US
citizens describing the *current* US policy.  I applied for
Australian citizenship last Feb and became a citizen in March

At the time I became a citizen I notified the US consulate and
said that I did not intend to relinquish my US citizenship.
I had to fill out a questionnaire (which I didn't find slanted
at all).  It asked things like did I still have ties to the
US like family and friends, did I intend to vote and file taxes,
did I own property or have bank accounts in the US. I answered
honestly, and subsequently received a letter informing me that
I had not lost my US citizenship. I assume I will have to show
that letter when I need to renew my US passport.

I have voted by absentee ballot for major US elections. I have
filed taxes every year. This is pretty simple although the forms
make it much more complicated that it is (typical IRS). I do
not have to pay any US taxes because of foreign income exemption.

Hope this sheds a little light on the process.

[TT] A couple of years ago my accountant (at Peat Marwick) told
me that a couple of her clients, US citizens but Canadian residents
had taken a trip back to the US, flying via Montreal.  They were
stopped at the border (US immigration is done in Montreal) and 
prevented from entering - being told that they hadn't filed their 
returns for the previous three years, they would not be allowed back 
in until they filed.  Apparently, IRS records are now accessible by 
Immigration and one's tax status can be checked automatically this
way.  She tells of several others who have relinquished US citizenship
for the reason that they are fed up with the filing requirement.

[As always, you should DOUBLE CHECK everything told you by anyone
about immigration laws to ANY country - as even the officials
sometimes get it wrong.]

* Australian/Canadian

[FN] According to the 1977 Citizenship Act, which applies to all who were
Canadian citizens as of Feb. 15, 1977 or later, citizenship is a right
that cannot be revoked by the voluntary act of a citizen in doing such
things as applying for citizenship in another country, or being absent
from Canada for any length of time. Has anything happened to change

[How about a Canadian answering this one ? -SW]

[MJ] I am not a Canadian, but have heard that some members of
the Canadian legislature think that the current law is too liberal, and
that taking out another citizenship should cause you to lose Canadian 
citizenship.  The law has not been changed, but there are noises suggesting
that it might be.

Rich Wales ( responded:

I am, incidentally, a US citizen living in Canada as a landed immigrant
(non-citizen permanent resident).  I plan to apply for Canadian citizen-
ship next year, which means I would eventually become a dual US/Canadian
citizen.  I have no Australian ties.

Re: Dual Australian/Canadian citizenship

    Canada's 1977 Citizenship Act freely permits dual Canadian/other
    citizenship.  Acquisition or exercise of another country's citizen-
    ship does =not= result in loss of Canadian citizenship.  Even if
    the naturalization oath of another country (such as the US) has a
    renunciatory provision in it, this has no legal effect in Canada.

    In June 1994, the House of Commons' Standing Committee on Citizen-
    ship and Immigration issued a report which, amongst other things,
    recommended that Canadian law should be changed to revoke Canadian
    citizenship in most cases following foreign naturalization.

    As of the present time (July 1995), no formal action has been taken
    on this or any other proposal in the committee report.  The Minister
    of Citizenship and Immigration, Sergio Marchi, has reportedly been
    planning on introducing a completely rewritten Citizenship Act for
    some time now, but so far this has not occurred.  Whether this new
    legislation will include provisions banning or restricting dual
    citizenship, or not, is unknown.

    So, for the time being at least, it is possible for a Canadian who
    becomes an Australian to retain both citizenships.  Assuming Aus-
    tralia follows through on proposals I have heard of to permit dual
    citizenship following foreign naturalization, it would also be
    possible for an Australian who became a Canadian to retain both

Re: Dual Australian/US citizenship

    As Zev Sero and Carol Denehy have noted already, US law now permits
    dual US/other citizenship.  The US State Department has become much
    more permissive toward dual citizenship claims since 1990 -- as can
    be seen by comparing Zev's and Carol's experiences.

    Assuming Australia follows through on proposals I have heard of to
    permit dual citizenship for Australians who acquire a foreign citi-
    zenship via naturalization, it should be possible for Australians
    to retain their Australian citizenship despite naturalization in
    the US.  The US naturalization oath still includes a renunciatory
    clause, but it is my understanding that this renunciation is not
    enforced by the US in any meaningful way.  A requirement that new
    US citizens must intend to reside permanently in the US following
    naturalization (and could lose their newly gained citizenship by
    moving away from the US within one year after naturalization) was
    repealed by Congress in October 1994.  I do not have any informa-
    tion as to whether there is any move afoot to repeal the renuncia-
    tory clause in the naturalization oath.

<End commentary by Rich>

3.3 Visas

3.3.1 For Foreigners in Australia

[Using information obtained June 1994]

* Application for a visitor visa to Australia in the US

All Applicants require:
- a valid passport containing at least 2 blank _visa_ pages
- completed and signed Application form 48
- one passport-type photograph
- return postage (if applying by mail)

[RLW]  A photograph is no longer required and the instructions ask for a
stamped self-addressed envelope in addition with proper return postage.
Also, they now accept a FedEx airbill with your account number for 
return of your passport - see later section on mailing
If you are a foreign passport holder (i.e. not US or Australian)
- all of the above
- Alien Registration card or valid visa, I-94 or I-20

[RLW] Additionally, they also require:

If you are a non-EEC/Canadian passport holder, information on your
family disposition (ie countries where your parents, children and
siblings live.

If applying for an extended stay (i.e. more than 3 months or 4 year validity)
- US$27.00 bank check or money order payable to "Australian Government
Impreset Account" as processing fee. (NB-not refundable regardless of
the outcome) [check this figure at the time of frequently 
goes up]

[RLW] Instructions I have say the money order should be in the name of 
"The Australian Consulate-General".

- evidence of funds (i.e. bank statement)

[RLW] Currently US$1500/month of stay

- letter of leave from employer stating the length of approved leave
and the proposed date of recommencement of employment
- itinerary or airline ticket
- proposed plans whilst in Australia and on return to USA

[RLW] Additionally, if over 70 years of age, doctor's certificate regarding 
fitness to travel and medical insurance.

If traveling on business
- brief letter from employer or company explaining business activities,
duration of stay and contact in Australia

If under age 18 traveling on own or with one parent
- notarised letter of consent from both parents or legal guardians

[RLW] They've changed the wording on this to:

If under age 18 at time of application:

1. A copy of birth certificate showing both parents, AND
2. Notarized letter of consent from any parent not accompanying - 
Required if that parent has any access or visitation rights, even if
the accompanying parent has full custody. (Death certificate
should be provided for any parent who is deceased). Parents 
accompanying the child, but not applying for a visa with the child 
need to show either a valid visa for Australia or an Australian/NZ

There is an additional section:

Long life visas:

Regular travelers to Australia for a visa for up to 4 years travel (or life
of passport if expiring in less than 4 years):
   Payment of $US27

If answered "YES" to any health conditions
- if a _minor_ condition, provide a brief statement outlining condition
- if a more _serious_ condition (eg diabetes), provide a recent
medical report on your health now and for your proposed period of stay
in Australia

If answered "YES" to any character questions
- statement outlining any convictions, sentence, dates and relevant factors

Occasionally our computers do random checks and requires some
applicants to complete an additional information form. Once the form
is completed and returned to this office, processing takes 7-10 days.

How to obtain your visa

You can apply for your visa by mail, by using a visa service/travel agent, or
in person at an Australian Consulate.

In person

Visas van normally be issued on the spot to US passport holders who  apply in
person during office hours (ie before 12pm Monday-Friday). Occasionally
there is a need for longer processing, so it is advisable to apply at least 
one week before your planned travel if possible. Non-US citizens usually
require several days processing.

By mail

To apply by mail, enclose the completed visa application form, passport (and
fee payment if appropriate), with a self-addressed, return envelope with
sufficient postage for the safe return of your passport.

As regular mail is often insecure of delayed, we strongly recommend that you 
use US Post Office pre-paid express mail for the despatch and return of your
passport. We are also able to return passports via Federal Express if you hae
an account number - we ask that you enclose a return airbill completed with 
name and address details and account number. (Certified mail should also be
secure but is extremely slow - often taking 21 days to arrive). We are unable
to return by registered mail. This office cannot be responsible for the loss
or delay of passport where the applicants do not provide postage for the
secure return of their documents.
As a guide to correct postage please provide: First class mail: minimum of
55c per passport; certified mail - stamps to the value of $1.75 per passport;
Express mail - stamps to the value of $10.75 for up to 3 passports.

Allow 3 weeks for processing of a visa by mail (or more if you are using a
slow form of mail such as first class or certified mail).

* Application form 48 Explanatory notes

[Some things already included above left out]

Form to be used to apply for visa to visit Australia for any
of the following purposes;

Tourism: for a visit to Australia as a tourist

Business: For entry to conduct business, undertake negotiations
and discussions or attend seminars, etc, within a short stay.

Close Family: for a visit to parents, spouse, child, brother or sister
who is an Australian citizen or Australian permanent resident.

Medical: for people who have made prior arrangements to undergo medical
treatment or consultations in Australia

- for a parent or guardian of an overseas student studying in Aus
- visiting fiance or other family
- an unaccompanied child under 18 years
- extended tourism

Where there are several reasons for seeking to enter Australia,
identify primary purpose of stay on the form.

This application form can be used to apply for Short Term Visit Visa
(classes 670-675) for stay of less than 3 months
 or a Visit Visa (classes 680-685) if you want to stay for more than 3
month on any one visit (A$30 processing fee). [again, check the fee]

Do not use this form for settlement, temporary residence, studies
(except incidental studies), or transit.

You may get a visitor visa only if you:
- are intending a genuine visit to Australia
- are of good health (except medical visitors)
- are of good character
- do not have any restrictions on your travelling to
Australia (such as having breached conditions of entry on a previous visit)
- have adequate funds to support yourself during your visit,
or provide evidence of assurance of support from a permanent resident
of Australia; and
- are not seeking to remain permanently in Australia.

Business Visit.

Visitors are generally barred from working in Australia, however,
business visitors are permitted to conduct business where the work is
of a short term nature and is not going to disadvantage a local
resident. Persons not usually included within this, or other visitor
provisions are entertainers coming to perform and religious workers
entering for religious activities.

Study. Visitors may undertake study in Australia provided it is:
- non-formal or recreational in nature,
- incidental to the purpose of the visit.

Visit for Medical Treatment.

Pre-conditions for this visa include confirming your condition will
not affect the health of others; having adequate funds to pay for the
full cost of treatment and having made adequate arrangements with those
providing the treatment.

Medical Report

Visitors applying for classes of entry other than medical treatment
just be of sound health, free from any disease or condition which is
likely to require significant care or treatment and/or not become a
significant charge on public funds. If there is any doubt about your
health, a recent medical report or statement from your doctor, will be
required to confirm your good health.  If you already have a medical
report, please attach it to the application form.

Conditions: When you are in Australia as a visitor, 
- you will not be allowed to undertake work unless you
have prior approval in writing of the Department of Immigration
and Ethnic Affairs in Australia
- you will not be allowed to do a formal course of study

Further periods of stay in Australia

If you apply for a Short Term Visit Visa (classes 670-675) you will
not be able to obtain a further period of stay in that class after
arrival (beyond a total stay of 3 months). Extensions beyond that
period involve a change of visa class and an increased charge.

If you apply for a Visit Visa you may be able to obtain a further
period of stay in Australia as a visitor where the need and adequate
funds can be demonstrated. If you believe you have a case for extending
your stay, you will need to apply to an office of the Dept of Immigration
and Ethnic Affairs before your period of authorised stay expires.
Among the circumstances the Dept considers are the applicant's record
of compliance with the conditions of entry. A fee is payable when
the application is lodged.

Leaving Australia: you must leave Australia on or before the date your
entry permit expires. A departure tax is payable when you leave

[MJ] The departure tax is presently A$25 and is payable 
however you leave Australia. This is a _tax_ and is paid to the
government. It does not (directly) pay for airport maintenance/
expansion as is the case in some other countries. It is payable at
the airport and can also be paid in advance at places like post offices.
I believe that this tax is shortly to be increased by a couple of
dollars and that people are going to have to be required to pay
it when they buy their air ticket (a much more sensible arrangement,

[TT] As of January 1, 1995 the tax is $27.  As of July 1, 1995, the 
tax is included in the ticket price.

Healthcare. Overseas visitors are not generally covered by Medicare,
private health insurance or travel insurance with a comprehensive
health coverage is recommended.

Currency requirements. Any person taking or sending Australian and/or
foreign currency equivalent of AU$5,000 or more into or out of
Australia must report the currency transfer to Customs, at the time of
arrival or departure. There is no limit to the amount of currency
taken into or out of Australia.  Currency means cash -- coins and
paper, not traveller's cheques.  Penalties for not reporting are
severe and non-reported currency may be seized.

* Migrating to Australia (957i January 1994)

Everyone who is not an Australian or New Zealander needs a visa for

[MJ] Not everyone thinks that this is a great policy, as foreign countries
tend to take this as an insult and require visas of Australians.
Often they issue single entry visas and charge significant amounts
of money (tourist visas to visit Australia are free), which can
be a real nuisance if you are an Australian trying to see the world.

3.3.2 For Australians in other Countries

* Visa requirements for Australians in Britain

[I have heard both that Australians need a visa, and that they don't! 
 Can anyone who has travelled to the UK recently please comment]

[MJ] They don't at the moment. The Treaty on European Union (commonly
known as the Maastricht treaty) states that the countries of the EU
(EC, EEC, whatever you want to call it) should abolish internal border
checks and adopt a common list of countries requiring visas. Eventually
therefore there is likely to be such a thing as a European visa that
is the same for all European countries. A draft list has been published.
I don't however know which countries are on it. If Australia is, then 
Australians will require visas to visit Britain in a couple of years.
If not, they won't, and the visa requirement for France and Spain will
also go away.

* Visa requirements for Australians in the United States

[MJ] It's worth mentioning that for a tourist (B1) visa, the US
has a policy of treating other rich countries _exactly_ the same way
that they treat US citizens. As Australia issues tourist visas for
free, the US issues tourist visas for Australians for free. If Australia
was to charge $15 for visas for Americans, the US would charge $15 for
visas for Australians. If Australia were to drop the visa requirement,
so would the US.

[No guarantee that these are completely up-to-date or accurate]

Visa for the US are as follows:

J-1: Exchange Visitor visa (for students, researchers).

* student J-1, J-2 experience [SD]

I am here at Penn State University to do a PhD. The max amount of
time I was given to do this is 6 years. I applied for a J1 visa so
that my husband would be on a J2, this allows him to apply for a work
permit (which he now has - the application was not as straightforward
as we were led to believe, let me know if you are interested in any
details). Initially I was on funding for 1 year, and as a result our
visas were valid for one year only, even though all my paperwork said I
was accepted into a PhD program of at most 6 years. With my J1 visa
comes a pink form called the IAP-66. This form, not the actual visa is
our permit to reside in the US. The visa is for (re-)entry purposes

My supervisor recently acquired 4 more years of funding for me, so I
got my IAP-66 renewed without any problems, the university took care
of it and it was all done within a week. The visa, however, is another
story. It is not possible to apply for a US visa within the US or even
from Canada! I wouldn't trust Mexico, so the only safe option would be
to go home and re-apply.  We want to travel to Canada, Mexico, etc
while we are here, so not having a valid visa is a huge pain!! I have
been assured that with a valid IAP-66 it is trivial to get a new visa.
So when applying people should make sure they have funding for the
entire period that they plan to be in the US, that way both visa and
IAP-66 will be valid and you can travel outside the US during your
stay.  When I applied I think it cost A$120, they wanted a letter from
the university that accepted me including financial details and proof
of US$5000 in our bank account. It took about 4 or 5 weeks for the
embassy to process everything.

And yes, when I am done here, I have to go home. I applied in June
1993, and I think the amount of personal funds has gone up to 5400 US
dollars now. This money, plus my University stipend is meant to
support both my husband and myself.  They will allow a J2 to work, but
only for their own benefit (to see the country and do other activities
and just to have something to do), but NOT to support a J1.  A J1 is
only allowed to work in the job they came to the US for, a student is
allowed to work on campus only (I tutored during my first year here,
officially called a TA - teaching assistant). A J2 can work anywhere
they like, but their visa and work permit are valid only with a valid
J1 IAP-66 form.  Another thing to note is that the immigration service
is as changeable as the weather, they change their rules very

* postdoc J-1 experience [AN]

I came in on a J-1 for my postdoc at Brown University. Brown organised
my original IAP-66 for my 1-year contract. I took the IAP-66 to the US
consulate in Melbourne, with passport, passport photo, filled in the
appropriate form, paid them money and acquired a J-1 visa for a
year. When my contract was extended for a second year, again, Brown
filled out the IAP-66 form, and I sent it off to Immigration in the
US, together with US$80, and got it validated. I was supposed
to get the actual visa in my passport the next time I went out of the
country. As it happened, I went to Bermuda for Christmas, arriving
late on Dec 23rd, nothing (consulates, etc) was open until after
Boxing Day, when I was due to leave, so I could not get my visa done.
So I just explained this to the person at Immigration (which was
actually done in Bermuda) and that seemed to be ok. When I was next in
Melbourne, I filled in the same form, gave in my passport, a photo,
and another A$158! I was very annoyed about having to pay again, but
as I was told rather rudely, lots of people would be happy to pay a
lot to be able to work in the USA!

J-1 holders are called non-resident aliens.

U.S. Visa Type J-2: For spouse of J-1 holder.  A J-2 can work anywhere
they like, but their visa and work permit are valid only with a valid
J1 IAP-66 form.

U.S. Visa Type H-1

An initial h-1 is issued for 3 years, it can be extended for 3 more
years. If you change jobs on an h-1, your new company has to get you a
new one in their name, but the time period does not reset i.e. you
cannot remain in the us more than 6 years after you first get an H-1.

U.S. Visa Type L-1 [DS]
L-1 visa a working visa issued to foreign citizens working for U.S.
corporations.  They are known as Intercompany Transferee visa and are
typically valid for a period of three years from the date of issue,
although this can usually be extended for an additional 3 years.
Application for an L-1 must be made on your behalf by the employer.
Holders of L-1 status are known as "Non resident Aliens" (charming
name really).  I am not sure of the cost of an L-1 as typically it is
paid for by the employer.
Dependents of L-1 holders are recipients of L-2 status.  L-2 holders
are not permitted to work.
Approval of an application for L-1 status is dependent on some or
all of the following:
        1.  Period of employment with the U.S. firm
        2.  Specific reasons why the beneficiary is uniquely
            qualified for the particular task
        3.  Evidence that the job in question has been advertised
            and no suitable applicants found 
Any L-1 holder that has travelled outside the U.S. will have
learned that re-entry into the U.S., even with your valid passport
and visa, is near impossible without some additional documentation.
Typically, an L-1 holder will need to carry:
        1.  The *original*, repeat *original*, petition approval 
            (I have been asked for this document on each re-entry --
        2.  A letter from the sponsoring employer stating
            your continuing employment with the company (signed
            notarized and dated within 3 months)

[SW] Unusual.  I have been in and out of the US about 4 times in the
last 3 years and they have only asked for the original petition on
the first entry.
[NF] I am here on the L-1 visa, basically for executives or essential
technical personnel on intra-company transfers.  For example, I worked
for a company which had offices in Adelaide and Santa Clara and
transferred between the two on the basis of technical knowledge which
I possessed. This is a nice visa to get because you don't have to do
labour certification to get a green card which speeds up the process

Green Card

Basically, you apply, fill in the (what seems like) thousands of
forms, and wait. If you're over here on an H-1 or L-1 visa it's pretty
much a formality (especially with the new H-1's that already have
labour certification). [NF]

Becoming a citizen.

[Entry needed. AN]

* Visa requirements for Australians in France [JB]

Yes, Australians need visas for France. In 1986 (je croix), it might
have been 1987, there were some bombings in Lyons, which were
suspected to have been done by <ethnic-minority> fanatics. In the
midst of the howls of "what is the government doing about it", the
French Govt, in a particularly stupid knee-jerk reaction, brought in a
requirement that visas will be required for all non-EC nationals. (As
if needing a visa ever stopped a terrorist. And the border checks had
long since gone.)

This rule is waived in cases where there is a bi-lateral agreement,
e.g.  with New Zealand, and in cases where it was feared to hurt the
tourist trade, e.g. US. As Australia doesn't play footsies about visas
for visitors, we need them to go to France.

French visas are in two flavours:

(a) less than 90 days. These are done over-the-counter here. They cost
FF200 (about $A54). I had to provide a letter for my 19-yo son stating
that we were supporting him financially, etc. Otherwise they would
have wanted bank statement proving he had enough money to live on in

(b) 90 days - 1 yr. To get these I needed:
(i) three interviews at the consulate;
(ii) FF600 ($A162)  per person in cash or bank cheques.
(iii) the letter of invitation from the French university
(iv) a letter from Monash saying everything about my status, salary,
travel grants, insurance, etc.
(v) tickets or confirmed itinerary
(vi) a medical certificate, in French, from an approved physician
(only one in Melbourne!) certifying:
        A) good health
        B) free of TB (X-ray result)
        C) free of syphilis (blood test) [the French bureaucracy hasn't
        discovered AIDS or hepatitis yet.]
Once I had all these, my application, because it was "pour la
sabbatique" had to be couriered off to Canberra to be "assessed" by
the Scientific & Cultural Attache at the French Embassy.  Well it's
all done. Each of the long-term visas set us back about $250 (such
medicals are, rightly, not covered by Medibank.)  Fortunately the
consulate staff were very helpful, polite and understanding. The total
time was was nearly two months, largely due to the queuing delays in
waiting for inteviews and medicals.

[MJ] Actually they come in three flavours.  If you are going to
France for 6 days or less, they will issue you a 'transit' visa.
It doesn't matter if you write some other reason (eg tourism) on
the form.  They will still issue a 'transit' visa.  These are significantly
cheaper than the visitors visa.  The last time I got one of these it cost 
me something like (UK pounds) 6.30.  I suspect that they are officially
something like FF50.

* Spain

[MJ] Australians now require visa to visit Spain.  This requirement came 
in on September 1, 1993.  I don't know why.

3.4 Immigration

[ A commercial venture has asked me to include their URL in the FAQ as a 
company to help with your immigration needs.  I'll do so to provide the
pointer for those who wish to use it.  I am in no way affiliated with 
them and have never used them so I cannot attest to the value of their
services.  If you want to use them, feel free, if not that's your option
as well. 

Steve, FAQ maintainer ]

3.4.1 Addresses

Department of Immigration, Local Government and Ethnic Affairs,
Chan St,
Belconnen 2617,

* USA 

Australian Embassy              New York Consulate General
1601 Massachusetts Ave NW,      630 Fifth Ave, Suite 420,
Washington,                     New York, NY, 10111
DC, 20036-2273                  (212) 408-8400
(202) 797 3222                  
(202) 797 3000     

Australian Tourist Commission.  
489 5th Avenue, 
New York,
NY 10017
(800) 395 7008  (note: new number June '93)
212 687 
1800 333 0199 for tourist information

San Francisco Consulate General         Houston Consulate   
1 Bush St, 7th Floor,                   Suite # 180, 1990 South Park Oak Blvd
San Francisco,                          Houston, 
CA, 94104-4413                          TX 77056-9998
(415) 362 6160                          (713) 629 9131 

Denver Consulate:                       Boston Consulate:    
The Honorary Consul is                  The Honorary Consul is
Mr Mark O'Regan                         Margaret Stanzler
C/- Australian/American                 20 Beacon St, 5th floor
        Chamber of Commerce             Boston, Ma.
999 18th Street, Suite 1370	        (617) 248 8655
CO 80202
(303) 297 1200 
Fax: (303) 2972050
Office visits by appointment only.

Los Angeles Consulate General
611 N. Larchmont Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90004
(213) 469-4300

* Southern England, Southern Wales, Channel Islands
	Migration Branch,
	Australian High Commission
	Australia House
	Strand, London WC2B 4LU
	(UK) 071 379-4334

* Central England, Northern Wales, Isle of Man
	Australian Consulate
	Chatsworth House
	Lever St
	Manchester M1 2DL

* Scotland, Northern Ireland, Northern England
	Australian Consulate
	Hobart House
	80 Hanover St
	Edinburgh EH2 2DL

* Republic of Ireland:
	Australian Embassy
	Fitzwilton House
	Wilton Terrace
	Dublin 2

The Immigration Process

To get the relevant forms, write to an Australian consulate and they
will send you some info asking you to send them some money (about $5)
for the forms.  When you get these forms you send about half a ream of
photocopies back with the "application processing fee" of $250 (this
fee is regardless of which class you are applying under !!).  If they
decide that they like you, you need to get various medicals done
(which in England cost about #100) with a nominated (probably private)
practice - if you happen to be a medical doctor, mention this when
making your appointment and they don't charge you (as my wife found
out :-).  This medical includes an AIDS test (Note: this can stuff up
your life insurance in the UK) as well as X-rays for TB, checks for a
bad heart and anything else that will cost Australia lots of money.
The whole application process takes a minimum of 3 months (once you
have sent them the forms).  All correspondence must be by mail.

With the points test, if you are <30, have a degree or trade (plus
some experience) and can speak English you pass.  As a friend of mine
found, being employed on a graduate program doesn't count as
experience.  He was also told "even if you had the experience we don't
need any professional buyers at the moment".  That is, passing the
points test only eliminates a reason for not letting you in.  Some
occupations get preferential treatment, but as of October 1992, there
are no occupations on the list, although these change with the times.
If you have a criminal record there's probably not much point

Should you get past all this, you get a visa stamped in your passport
that is both for migration in the next year and multiple-entry for the
next 4 years.  They also send you lots of stuff telling you that there
is little chance of getting a job at the moment.  [PW]

After you make the points test, you submit your application.  You also
need loads of other official papers to make an application (marriage
license if you're married, certifications from your jobs if you've
been working, etc.).  After application, you also need to pass a
medical test and provide a set of chest x-rays and other things, but
they'll tell you when they want you to do it (I guess it's to save you
money if you flunk the points test).  The whole process takes four
months at least.  When and if you pass and are granted permission to
migrate, you have the opportunity to move within the space of one
year, and are given to enter and leave Oz freely for a period of four
years after that. [CB]

[CD] adds: I had to file ALL forms, including medical and educational
forms, etc.  at the same time. I was applying as spouse and you can
still get turned down if your medical or criminal record offends. If
the embassy/consulate has to send things back to Australia for
approval it can take MUCH longer.

3.4.2 Criteria and Points System 

In summary, to immigrate to Australia, you must fall under one
of the following categories.

* Family (almost automatic): spouse, de-facto spouse, immediate family
* Skill:
- you have a job that was advertised extensively in Australia without success
(As of 1 October 1992, there have been no occupations on this list)
- you pass the points test, and they feel like letting you in
- "distinguished talent" ie., bloody good at sport
* Special eligibility: former citizen, former resident, relative of a 
  New Zealander living in Australia

Ros Whysall adds:
There is now a business entry class, which I do not have details of but
it requires something like A$300,00 in net assets to start with, plus
fairly long term senior management experience in a company.

There are two ways to get entry to Oz; via an Independent Entry Class
and via a Concessional Family Class.  The former works if you just
say, "Hey, I want to go to OZ" and put in an application.  The latter
works if you have a family member in Oz who is willing to vouch for
you.  You can only rack up points in one of the two categories.
Here's the list of points:


Employability Factor
  80  Trade certificate/degree/diploma (Acceptable to Australia), 3 years 
        post-qualification work, on Priority Occupation List [changes 
  70  Trade certificate/degree (Acceptable to Australia), 3 years 
        post-qualification work. **
  60  Trade certificate/degree (Acceptable to Australia), with less than
        3 years post qualification work. **
  55  Diploma (Acceptable to Australia), with at least 3 years 
      post-qualification work experience.**
  50  Diploma (Acceptable to Australia), with less than 3 years 
      post-qualification work.**
  30  Trade cert/degree/diploma (recognised by overseas authorities 
        and assessed by Australian authorities as requiring only minor 
        upgrading), and 3 years post-qualification work.**
  25  Trade cert/degree/diploma but qualifications held are unacceptable.
  25  Post secondary school qualification.
  20  12 years of primary and secondary schooling
  10  10 years of primary and secondary schooling
  0   Less than 10 years schooling

** Work experience must be immediately before your application to migrate.

Age Sub-Factor
  30  18 to 29
  25  30 to 34
  15  35 to 39
  10  40 to 44
  5   45 to 49
  0   Less than 18; more than 50


Language Sub-Factor
  20  Able to communicate effectively in English in a range of situations.
  15  At the level described for 20 points above for 3 of the 4 skills of
      reading, speaking, understanding and writing, but at a lower level
      for the remaining skill.
  10  Able to communicate effectively in English on familiar, everyday 
  5   Able to handle basic communication in English in familiar every day 
      topics or fluent in at least 2 languages other then English.
  0   Familiar with only a few common English words and phrases.

NOTE: You may be required to sit a test to determine the number of points
      will receive for the language skills sub-factor.


Relationship factor
  15  You are the parent of your sponsor
  10  You are brother, sister, or non-dependent child of sponsor
  5   Nephew or niece of sponsor

Citizenship factor
  10  Your sponsor has been an Oz citizen for 5 years or more
  5   				"       for less than 5 years

Settlement Factor
  10  Sponsor has been resident in Oz for 2 years and they or their 
      spouse have been continuously employed for the last two years.

Location Factor
5  Sponsor has lived in a State or Territory designated area for the last two

The designated area list is (effective 1 February 1993) :

Victoria except Melbourne Region
Queensland except urban Brisbane, Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast
Western Australia except Perth Metropolitan Region
South Australia - entire State
Northern Territory - entire Territory
Tasmania - entire State
Australian Capital Territory - entire Territory

Okay, tally up the points, and if you have a high enough total, you're
Oz-bound!  The point total changes each year, but I think it goes like
this (effective 23 December 1993) :


Pass Mark         95
Pool Mark         90


Pass Mark        100
Pool Mark         95

NB: the number of points required for entry to the pool is the same no
matter what country you come from. [JM]

([SK] For Independent application you have to reach min. 100 pts.  For
concessional family application (with relatives that sponsor you,
other than spouse) you have to reach 95 points.  After that you have
to take an English test (for non-english speaking people) at the
moment it's the IELTS test. If you don't have enough marks at the
test, you will have to pay the "English Education Charge", about 4000

In the last category, you are placed within an entry pool, and I think
winners are chosen by lot from the pool.  Note that there is also a
Business Entry Class, for folks who are going Down Under to start
their own business.  There is also an entirely different system
whereby you bypass the points test and the wait if you somehow manage
to get a job, and your employer will vouch for you.

3.4.3 Spouse/fiance(e) immigration 


[To make things simpler, 'you' will refer to the person in the United
States, and 'spouse' will refer to the person in Australia.]

* Once you have applied for permanent residence in Australia, you may
not reenter Australia until your new visa has been issued.  The
process is handled in stages.  The total time for obtaining your new
status will usually take three to six months.

* The spouse must go the Australian emigration officials and get a
copy of Form M40.  He/she should complete that and send it and a
certified copy of his/her birth certificate (assuming Australian
birth) to you.

* Locate your nearest Australian embassy to get the forms you will
need for the first stage of the process.  The application processing
fee is $285 (US) which must be in the form of a certified check or
money order. You need to file the following documents: your spouse's
completed sponsorship form and certified birth certificate, a
certified criminal record clearance for yourself (from your local
police), a certified copy of your birth certificate, a notarized
outline of the chronology of your relationship, 3 passport photos, a
certified copy of your divorce decree (only if you have been married
before, obviously), a form they call 'personal particulars', your
passport, and either a letter from a marriage celebrant of your
intention to marry or a certified copy of your marriage certificate.
Return all of this paperwork to the Australian embassy.

* After this initial paperwork has been approved by the immigration
officer, you will receive the forms for your physical.  When you have
your physical, ask the doctor for a detailed report of *anything* that
isn't absolutely "normal", including things you may consider
unimportant like allergies.  Basically if there is anything at all on
your forms that could be considered any sort of medical "condition"
ask for a separate letter describing what medical treatment or
followup is necessary (if none, make sure the doctor states this).
This forms should then be returned to the immigration office at your
local Australian embassy.

* While it appears to make no difference to immigration officials
whether you are married or engaged to be married, if you are engaged,
you will have to be married within 2 or 3 months (the answers given on
this varied) of your arrival in Australia.

Rory Clancy ( asked:

> What I'd like to know is whether an application for a Permanent Resident
> Visa as an individual or as a couple are considered differently. Is the
> application viewed as two separate applications and the Points System
> calulated for both individuals or together as one combined effort.
> What is the situation if one of the couple may fall short of the 
> 110 points qualification level, does that disqualify one or both??

and then answered his own question with:

I got almost no feedback from the newsgroup but somehthing turned
up in my dealings with the Embassy, basically I applied for the forms
`Application for Migration to Australia'(Form 47). This included a form
`Explanatory Notes Application for Migration to Australia' (Form 47N).
Under the section `Who this form covers' on page 1.

	The form and the fee cover a family unit -
	comprising a main applicant and, where applicable,
	spouse and dependants.

	If you are married, or living with a partner in a de facto/
	common law relationship, you should consider which of 
	you is most likely to meet the requirements before filling
	in the application form. That person should be the main

Questions 17 to 19 in Form 47 Cover the Marriage Status of the applicant.
Again from `Explanatory Notes Application for Migration to Australia' 
(Form 47N).  Under the section `Questions 17 to 19' page 8.

	If you are living in a relationship with a person of the
	opposite sex but are not legally married (also called a `de
	facto' relationship or `common law' marriage) you must
	provide evidence. This could include evidence that you
	and your partner use the same last name, share accomodation,
	have joint bank accounts, have property in common, share 	
	responsibility for children or have wills made out in each 
	other's favour and so on.

>From Form 47 Question 17, Marriage Status includes:	
	Never Married
	Engaged (Date of intended Marriage) (Met in person)
	De Facto/Common Law

Questions 36 to 60 in Form 47 Cover `Spouse, intended spouse or prospective
spouse'. Again from `Explanatory Notes Application for Migration to Australia' 
(Form 47N).  Under the section `About your Spouse, intended spouse or 
prospective spouse' on page 11.

	If you are married, living together in a de facto/common law
	relationship, engaged and intend to marry and then migrate as
	a married couple, or engaged and intend to marry in Australia
	this part must be completed.

So once a couple can establish their relationship as engaged/de facto/common
law they can apply using a single application form(47) as a family unit;
applicant and spouse, where the applicant is the most likely person
to satisfy the requirements (points system for independent visa class for
example) for immigration.

Antonio Lam adds:

I married my wife after I had my first landing in Australia.  To apply a 
permanent resident for my wife, what I had to do was to show the Australia 
Embassy in Hong Kong our marriage certificate, bank statement, my visa, 
and the termination letter from my employer.  Point system was not 
applicable to my wife.  The visa was issued under the condition that my 
wife would not be allowed to enter Oz under I have my first landing.  Once 
the principle applicant has a visa, it is almost guaranteed that your 
spouse will be ok for the entry requirements.

3.4.4 Employers sponsoring foreign employees

People often assume that Australian companies can sponsor foreign
employees, with the same ease as US or Canadian companies can.
Unfortunately for such posters this is generally not the case.

Organisations can sponsor foreigners, and such people can be given
temporary working visas.

To do this the sponsoring organisation has to first identify under
what category they will sponsor the individual.  There are many
categories to choose from.  For example there is a category by
which foreign embassy staff can sponsor people to work in the
embassies.  Also Universities can sponsor academics fairly easily
using a special category for academics visiting on a sabbatical.

Entertainers can be brought out by appropriate organisations, and there
are special categories for professional sportsmen/sportswomen.

But for comapnies there are only three potential categories.  These
are the executive, specialist, and exchange categories.

The executive category is very much restricted to an organisations
senior staff.  It would not be much use for the average such poster.
These working visas are usually valid for a max of 24 months.

The exchange category is usually reserved for government bodies,
but might be for companies.  The idea is that an Australian
is swapped for a foreigner.  It is used only for organisations
that want to internationalise their staff.  I don't know how one
applies under this category.  I expect it is difficult.

The last applicable category is the "specialist" category.  It is
easy for companies to do this for less than four months.  The Dept
of Immigration requires no proof that an Australian couldn't be
found to do the job.  Such visas are not extendable beyond 12
months.  For a visa from 4 months to 12 months, though, the
sponsoring companies must be able to prove that they have attempted
to find an Australian to do the job.

This cateory has been abused by companies in the past.  Australian
companies are required, before being allowed to sponsor someone, to
do the following:

	1)	Advertise the position with the PES or CES
		within the last 4 months.  Proof is required that they
		have done so.

	2)	Have advertised in ALL of the following within
		the last 6 months.
		a)	A major metropolitan newspaper
		b)	A national newspaper
		c)	A local newspaper
		d)	An appropriate trade or professional journal.

		These ads need to have included salaries and conditions,
		and a copy of the ads and proof of their having been placed
		and the day of their being distributed is all required
		for the Dept of Immigration should they request it. (And
		they apparently often request it)

Thus very few Australian companies would go through all this unless
they genuinely needed someone they could not employ here.  (And note
they would need to do it every 12 months at least).

Bernd Kissler ( has a page setup with information
on immigrating to Australia (

3.5 Emigrants

[The following needs to be confirmed. AN]

If you have lived in Australia for more than 2 out of the last 3
years, you are eligible for a return visa, so that you are able to
come back to Australia after you left for overseas. The visum is
granted to permanent residents, and is valid for 5 years.

If later on you come back to Australia and live there for 2 years, you
are eligible for another 5-year extension. (1-year extension after 1

[MJ] People who have lived in Australia for a minimum of three
years as permanent residents are entitled to apply for citizenship.
They are no longer required to take an oath of allegiance to the
queen.  This is one of the shortest waiting periods in the world,
something that (IMHO) we should be proud of.

Antonio Lam modifies this to: 

People live in Australia for 2 years within the first 5 years after the 
entry visa is issued are entitled to apply for citizenship.  ( 3 years as 

| | | | | |   Stephen Wales               | Internet:
|M|I|N|C|O|M  Denver, Colorado, U.S.A.    | No employer opinion included

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