If you leave Australia as an unlawful non-citizen (i.e. you did not hold any type of visa when you left Australia), or as the holder of a Bridging Visa Class C, D or E granted outside of certain specified timeframes, you may be prevented from obtaining another Australian visa for a period of 3 years.
Under Schedule 4 of the Migration Regulations 1994, certain “Public Interest Criterion” (PIC) apply to such people. The two most common types of PIC people run afoul of are PIC 4013 and PIC 4014.
PIC 4013 and PIC 4014 contain “Exclusion Periods”, meaning that if an applicant does not satisfy the criteria set out in a given PIC, then unless exceptions apply, they cannot be granted a visa within a period of 3 years from a given date, commonly referred to as a “re-entry ban”.