Migration Review Division – Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT)

The Hon Ian Callinan AC QC recently handed down his Report on the Statutory Review of the Tribunals Amalgamation Act 2015. The report covered a number of matters relevant to the conduct of migration review applications including processing times (ie. Backlogs), bridging visas for certain applicants, qualifications of Members and general administration of the AAT. We expect processing times at the AAT to reduce over time as it implements measures to deal with the processing delays.

Currently, we are experiencing processing times at the AAT of about 1-2 years for visa refusal cases and about 6-15 months for visa cancellation.

Federal Circuit Court (FCC)

FCC appeals of AAT decisions are available if you consider that the AAT incorrectly applied the law in making its decision. Due to the increased number of migration and refugee decisions being made by the AAT, and an increasing number being appealed to the FCC, time to the first hearing (known as a Directions Hearing) at the FCC can be over 2 years. Following on from the Directions Hearing, there is currently a further significant period to a final hearing.

Administrative Appeals Tribunal and Federal Circuit Court appeals involve complex analysis of facts and law to determine your prospects of success and the best strategy for your case. It is important to consult an immigration lawyer before making a decision to lodge an appeal with either review Tribunal/Court.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.