I am a 30 year old male citizen of Singapore. Previously I studied at Northwestern University for 7 years from 2004 to 2011 , but due to poor academics , dropped out of school 3 times. The last time I reapplied back, I got a visa refusal under section 214(b). After that, I went back to Singapore and applied to Monash University on Australia and got accepted --/ I went over to study but after a couple of weeks , dropped out and returned to Singapore and cancelled my student visa. However on my Monash university application form , I did not declare that I was previously denied a visa. And on the Australian visa application form , under " Have you ever been refused entry to any country on character grounds " , I wrote no because I thought character grounds meant criminal record. I wasn't caught but I am really worried it will come back to haunt me when I apply to become a citizen of another country ( an option I am very keen in ). Any ideas what I should do ?

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    It looks like a case of 'post submission remorse'. If so, there's not much to do except to ride it out. If the remorse is severe, you can speak to a professional about a cancel/resubmit strategy. The internet is not very useful in cases of post submission remorse. – Gayot Fow Oct 12 '14 at 9:12
  • Yup I am just worried that if I declare now to the authorities that I didn't declare my visa refusal during my original application, they might charge me with fraud and ban me from Australia, which would show up on my record and affect my travel to other countries. Just curious --- lets say I don't declare it and no one knows for the time being, lets say 5 years down the road I apply to become a citizen of Bulgaria or something, will the Bulgarian authorities dig into stuff like that and ask why I was given an Austrslian visa despite being denied one in the US ? – Cai Gengyang Oct 12 '14 at 9:51
  • (1) do nothing and forget about it (2) "will the Bulgarian authorities dig into stuff like that" answer: no. BTW what the HELL do you want to leave SG for? Everyone wants to get in there. :) – Fattie Oct 12 '14 at 13:53
  • Note also - you speak of the "Monash university application form". If you mean the form you filled in FOR THE COMPANY THAT RUNS THE UNIVERSITY, that is nothing. It's just private paperwork. Irrelevant. ALSO NOTE I'd almost certainly guess it was asking if you;d been refused a visa FOR AUSTRALIA, not some other country (e.g., the USA). – Fattie Oct 12 '14 at 13:54
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    No way a 214(b) refusal would ever be consider on "character grounds". – Doc Oct 13 '14 at 6:47

TL;DR: You're fine.

Making a false declaration to an immigration authority is a big deal and can back to haunt you if you are caught. However, "character grounds" refers to have a criminal record, which you do not have. So you have not lied to the Australian government.

Making a false declaration to a university can get you expelled from that university, but will have no impact on anything else. (Also, since you did get the visa, I don't see how the university could possibly ever find out that you had previously been denied one.)

In general, the immigration authorities of various countries do not cooperate at all; getting them to exchange information even when you want them to can be really painful. (Here's my own little story of how hard it was to get the Singaporean police to talk to Australian immigration.) So unless you end up on a multinational terrorist watch list or have an Interpol arrest warrant out, it's really unlikely that the Bulgarian authorities would ever find out (or, frankly, even care) about a US visa refusal.

All that said, it's still the best to tell the truth whenever you possibly can when dealing with Immigration. They're trained to sniff out inconsistencies and lies, and as stated getting busted is really bad, while honestly explaining a story that doesn't involve any crime or other real misbehaviour on your part is not a big deal.

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Well I just called an agent from the study abroad office in Singapore, and she said it won't matter because " character grounds " meant something serious like a criminal offence, whereas I was rejected a visa for academic reasons ... Still , on the university application form itself I said no to the question " have you ever been refused a visa "

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  • Yup, we'll see how it goes. I am at the moment sending some enquiries to the manager at an immigration agency called citizen invest that helps foreigners gain citizenship of countries in Europe and South America. I m – Cai Gengyang Oct 14 '14 at 7:51
  • I am aiming for the Cyprus program which gives you citizenship if accepted for investing money in the countries business/ real estate. I told her about my visa refusal and showed her my documents -- she said she would check with the cyprus authorities if this would be an issue. – Cai Gengyang Oct 14 '14 at 7:52
  • Well , I just called up the official cyprus investment agency in cyprus and told the officer about my us visa refusal and asked if it would be an issue --- he said no issue at all since it is totally different country and seemed annoyed at me for asking such a question and not reading the instructions on the website, then he said to call me back when I have further questions. So looks good for now, I'm going to proceed with this... – Cai Gengyang Oct 14 '14 at 8:11

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