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The Australian government believes that new residents should be encouraged to learn as much as they can about their new country, its heritage, language, customs, values and way of life and to apply for Australian citizenship when they become eligible.
From 15 October 2007, all applicants aged 18 years and over are required to sign a values statement when applying for selected visas. The statement requires applicants to confirm that they will respect the Australian way of life and obey the laws of Australia before being granted a visa.
For most visa applicants the Australian Values Statement is included in the application form. There are two different values statements. The statement applicants will be required to sign depends on the visa they are applying for.
All provisional, permanent and a small number of temporary visa applicants are required to have read or had explained to them information provided by the Australian government before signing the values statement. This information is contained in the Life in Australia book.
For all other temporary visa applicants the Australian Values Statement is included in the general declaration section of their application form.
People currently outside Australia who are applying for a Humanitarian visa are required to sign the values statement at interview. These applicants will not be expected to have read the Life in Australia book, as the contents of the book will be explained to them at interview. This different process recognises the difficult circumstances often faced by Humanitarian visa applicants outside Australia.
There is a small group of visas that do not require the Australian Values Statement. This group includes and is not limited to:
- Visitor visas
- New Zealand citizens entering Australia on a special category visa
More information about which visas require the Australian Values Statement to be signed is available in the Values Statement Visa Selector.
Values Statement Visa Selector
Australian Values Statement – Provisional and Permanent
Australian Values Statement – Temporary
Life in Australia book
The information that some applicants are required to have read or had explained to them before they sign the values statement is called the Life in Australia book. This book provides information about Australian history, culture, society and the values we share to help applicants understand the values statement.
All applicants for a provisional, permanent and a small number of temporary visas are required to have read or had explained to them the contents of the Life in Australia book.
Most temporary visa applicants are not required to read the book, but may do so if they wish.
See: Life in Australia book
Questions and answers
For additional information about the values statement.
See: Australian Values – Questions and Answers