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The Administrative Appeals Tribunal

Written By Michelle O'Sullivan
Tue, Jul 31, 2018
Michelle O'Sullivan

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) conducts independent merits review of a wide range of administrative decisions made under Commonwealth laws by the Australian Government and some non-government bodies, including migration decisions made by the Department of Home Affairs (DHA).

Who can apply?

Not all applicants who receive a refusal of an application made to DHA have the right to have this decision reviewed by the AAT. There are many factors to be considered when assessing whether you can validly apply. In some cases, the only person who can apply for review is the visa applicant or former visa holder, in other cases it can only be the sponsor or a close relative. Your location at the time that you applied for the visa and/or received a decision can also be a factor.

The validity of your application for review is the most important step in the process. If an application for review is deemed to be invalid, the consequences can be severe, for example, you may lose your bridging visa status, and face having to leave Australia.

What is the deadline for application?

The deadline by which you must submit your application for review to the AAT varies depending on the type of visa you wish to have reviewed. In most cases, the time limit applicable to nomination or visa refusals is 21 days from the date on which the notice of refusal was received. Timely submission of your application for review is critical, as the AAT has no discretion to allow for late applications. Failure to submit your application on time will mean that your application will be deemed invalid, and any bridging visa held by you will subsequently be lost.

How much does it cost?

At present an application for review to the AAT costs $1,764.00. Should a nomination and visa be refused, this fee is payable per application. A successful applicant will be refunded 50% of the application fee.

What happens after I lodge my application?

Your application will be allocated to a Tribunal Member, who will generally invite you to comment on the reasons your application was refused, with reference to the relevant legislation. You may also be invited to attend a hearing, in person or by video link, during which you may be asked to present arguments. The Member will then form a decision as to whether or not to remit your application.

How long does it take for the AAT to hand down a decision?

You can view current processing times as listed on the AAT website: http://www.aat.gov.au/migration-and-refugee-division/steps-in-a-review/how-long-will-the-process-take

Why TSS?

TSS Immigration can discuss the merits of any proposed appeal, prepare submissions in support of your application and manage the appeal process for you, including representation at any associated hearings. Please contact us for advice on how best to proceed in the event that you receive a nomination or visa refusal.

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