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AAT Appeal

If a visa has been refused or cancelled by the Department of Home Affair (DoHA) there are very strict eligibility requirements and time limits to appeal to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT). Not all visa decisions can be appealed to the AAT, however.

When receiving a negative outcome from the DoHA the first step is to look whether there is an appeal right to the AAT or not? Next we need to check the time limit. The AAT does not have the power to extend the time limit for migration appeals and if the application is lodged too late, the AAT cannot conduct the review.

The AAT is a merits review body. It is separate from the DoHA and will assess the application again with ‘fresh eyes’. Although the DoHA is separate from the DoHA, it must still apply the same law and requirements.

A Tribunal member will reconsider the facts, law and policy and make a new decision. You may be asked to attend a hearing with the Tribunal Member. During the hearing, you will be asked a serious of questions relevant to your case which allows the Tribunal Member to gain a more detailed understanding of the issues. Sometimes, the Tribunal Member may wish to speak with other people involved in your case, such as a sponsor, or supporters.

The majority of what we do to assist is done well before the hearing takes place – through identifying the relevant law and issues, analysing and determining what materials should be provided and providing comprehensive submissions addressing how these materials relate to the relevant criteria. We aim to make the hearing as straightforward and stress free as possible for all parties involved.

At the end of the process, the AAT has the power to do the following:

Affirm the original decision. This means that the original decision by the DoHA still stands and the outcome has not changed Vary the decision

Set aside the decision and replace DoHA for reconsideration, with specific directions. This means that the matter will return to the DoHA for a new decision to be made. Most importantly, the Tribunal cannot grant a visa. This is the role of the DoHA and the Minister.

IMES registered migration agent has significant experience in all aspects of migration administrative appeals. We can assist you from the very outset, or you can ask us to become involved at any point in time. Our experienced Registered Migration Agents are well versed to counsel you on these matters and can respond quickly to time sensitive issues.

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AAT Appeal

If a visa has been refused or cancelled by the Department of Home Affair (DoHA)..


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