Lodgement procedures for voluntary removals living in the community are as follows:

  • The onus is on the individual to obtain a travel document from their own government representatives, whether the government is represented in Australia or not.

  • In cases where travel is imminent and there are difficulties or delays obtaining a travel document from the person’s own government representatives, DFAT would accept a letter from the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) recommending issue of a one-way restricted validity Certificate of Identity (COI) to allow the person to depart Australia by the desired date.

  • Applicants that qualify for a COI under this category (i.e. DIAC are sponsoring the removal but the applicant cannot obtain a national passport to allow travel to occur) are required to complete a PC5 application form. Those living within the community are required to attend a personal interview at their nearest Australian Passport Office (only). In these cases a supporting DIAC letter is to accompany the application.

  • A one-way limited COI is to be issued to allow travel to take place, validity limited to a minimum which allows travel to be undertaken.

  • Where the applicant has difficulty in providing the normal guarantor on the application form, APO will accept ID certification provided by DIAC on the application form.

  • Payment of the normal fee is required.

  • Where a voluntary returnee remains in custody, their application should be passed direct to the Canberra Passport Office by DIAC head office under cover of a letter requesting issue of a travel document.

  • International Organisation for Migration (IOM) may act on behalf of DIAC in managing the voluntary return of various visa or non-visa holders from Australia to their home countries but a letter of support to issue a travel document from DIAC is still required. IOM must not involve itself in the actual process i.e. completing application forms, attending the interview etc.

  • The issued document is to be handed to DIAC (Returns and Removals Section or a local DIAC representative in the state) and a receipt obtained for the document. The receipt is to be scanned into Delta as part of the dossier.