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Refugee and Humanitarian Visas

Applications are assessed against the criteria of the five subclasses of the Refugee and Humanitarian (Class XB) visa.

Refugee Visa (Subclass 200)

This visa is for people who are subject to persecution in their home country and are in need of resettlement. The majority of applicants who are considered under this category are identified by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and referred to the Australian Government by the UNHCR.

In-country Special Humanitarian Programme Visa (Subclass 201)

This visa offers resettlement to people who have suffered persecution in their country of nationality or usual residence and who have not been able to leave that country to seek refuge elsewhere. It is for those living in their home country and subject to persecution in their home country.

Global Special Humanitarian Programme Visa (Subclass 202)

The Special Humanitarian Programme (SHP) visa is for people who, while not being refugees, are subject to substantial discrimination and human rights abuses in their home country. People who wish to be considered for a SHP visa must be proposed for entry by an Australian citizen or permanent resident over the age of 18, an eligible New Zealand citizen or an organisation operating in Australia.

Emergency Rescue Visa (Subclass 203)

This visa offers an accelerated processing arrangement for people who satisfy refugee criteria and whose lives or freedom depend on urgent resettlement. It is for those subject to persecution in their home country and assessed to be in a situation such that delays due to normal processing could put their life or freedom in danger.

Woman at Risk Visa (Subclass 204)

This visa is for female applicants, and their dependents, who are subject to persecution or are of concern to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), are living outside their home country without the protection of a male relative and are in danger of victimisation, harassment or serious abuse because of their gender. The majority of applicants who are considered under this category are identified and referred to the Australian Government by the UNHCR.

Last reviewed Wednesday 27 August 2014