Interview process for protection visa

When you are contacted, you will be provided a time and place for the interview. The departmental officer who interviews you might not be the same officer that makes the final decision (the decision maker).

When you attend your interview, it is important that you answer questions about your claims and give all the information needed to allow a decision to be made on your application.

If you cannot attend a scheduled interview, you can ask for it to be rescheduled. Let us know as soon as possible if you cannot attend the interview.

Please arrive 15 minutes before your interview is scheduled to start to make sure it starts on time.

Documents you need to bring in

As part of your application, we asked you to provide certified copies of genuine, original documents to support your protection claims and to establish your identity, nationality or citizenship. You should bring the original documents to your interview, along with English translations of the documents.  

A departmental officer or decision maker assessing your application might also ask you to provide more documents.

Who you can bring with you

You could be interviewed alone or with other members of your family unit. The interviewer will let you know whether you will be interviewed alone or whether they want to interview you together with members of your family unit.

We will provide you with an interpreter if you need one. You can also bring your migration agent. If you want to bring a support person, such as a friend or relative, to the interview with you, you should contact the officer listed on your 'request to attend interview' letter before the interview to ask for permission to bring them.

If you bring your children to the interview, you are responsible for keeping them occupied and making sure they do not disrupt the interview.

Interview

Before your interview, you will be given an information sheet that explains what Australia's protection obligations are. Interviews are usually audio-recorded. The interviewer will discuss this with you and ask permission to record the interview. This makes sure we have a full record of what was discussed at your interview.

During the interview, the departmental officer will ask you for more information about you and why you are applying for a protection visa. They could ask some very personal questions that might feel intrusive. However, the departmental officer is trying to make sure they get all of the relevant information so that the decision maker can make a proper decision about your application. As such, it is important that you give the departmental officer full and truthful answers to all questions they ask. The interview will also give you an opportunity to change any incorrect information you have previously given.

As part of your interview, you might also be asked to make an oath or affirmation that the information you are providing is accurate. This is a solemn promise to tell the truth. If you do not do so without a reasonable explanation, the decision maker can reach a conclusion unfavourable to your credibility.

It is important to treat departmental staff with respect during your interview. Interviews will be stopped if your behaviour becomes threatening or aggressive.