Immigration Law | Agent Limits and AAT Intervention

Executive Legal's immigration law department explains migration requirements

A Sydney-based immigration agent can help you to prepare all the requirements for your visa application, however the decision to approve still depends on the Australian government.

Ministerial Intervention

There are cases in which the decision regarding a visa application is interceded by the Minister. This does not mean that they are legally bound to do so; the Minister typically only intervenes on a visa application if it is in the public interest to do so. There are only few Ministerial Intervention cases that are successful.

Visa applicants can apply for Ministerial Intervention if they have received a decision by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal or if an applicant has had their Protection visa application refused or cancelled.

Only applicants with existing visas can be considered for Ministerial Intervention. Any attempts to apply for intervention without an existing visa will be dismissed.

Should the Ministerial Intervention for visa application be unsuccessful, the applicant will be required to exit Australia. At this time, your Sydney-based immigration agent is unable to intercede any further.

Ministerial Intervention for Visa and the AAT

If the AAT has reviewed your application there may be an opportunity for the decision to be reviewed by the Minister. This also includes the former Migration Review Tribunal and the Refugee Review Tribunal—if the decision was made prior to 1 July 2015.

Here are the factors and guidelines that are taken into consideration for Ministerial Intervention:

  • Any circumstances that may result in serious, ongoing and irreversible harm and continuing hardship to an Australian citizen or an Australian family unit when ignored.
  • Any circumstances that are related to the applicant’s age and/or health and/or psychological state that could result in serious, ongoing and irreversible harm and hardship when ignored.
  • If an applicant can bring exceptional economic, scientific, cultural or other benefits to Australia if permitted to remain in the country.
  • Any circumstance that is not under the control of the relevant legislation; or clearly unintended consequences of legislation; or the application of relevant legislation leads to unfair or unreasonable results in the applicant’s case.
  • In the case that the applicant cannot be returned to their country of residency due to circumstances outside of the applicant’s control.
  • A case cannot be considered for Ministerial Intervention if the visa application contradicts the public interest of the country. For instance, when a person fails to comply with the conditions of their visa during their stay, if an applicant does not meet the character requirements, if the applicant has been proven to be a direct or indirect risk to national security, if a partner visa application is subject to an 8503 “No Further Stay” condition or the person is barred from applying for a partner visa onshore.

    In the case that you are barred from applying for a partner visa onshore, even the best immigration agent in Sydney would not be able to change the situation. You would have to comply with the decision made regarding your application.

    Refusal or Cancellation of Protection Visas

    An applicant is only allowed to apply for one Protection visa. In the case that their application is refused, they will not be able to apply a second time. Protection visas include permanent Protections visas, Temporary Protection visas or Safe Haven Enterprise visas.

    The opportunity to apply for a review of a Protection visa is only possible through the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT). As an applicant, you are expected to have submitted all of the relevant information upon your initial application.

    Once you have submitted your application for approval, your Sydney-based immigration agent is no longer able to intercede on your behalf. An immigration agent is only able to make sure that your application progress has gone smoothly and can provide you advice. But, ultimately, the decision to approve your application is not within an immigration agent’s control.

    If your application has been considered by the DIBP or the AAT, the Minister will no longer entertain your submission. Although, the Minister may consider intervening in the case of a Protection visa if the circumstances surrounding the Protection visa claims have changed and it cannot be addressed in the initial application or to the Tribunal.

    Protection visas will not be considered in the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Canada, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom and the United States of America.

    Unless the applicant is from Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, South Sudan or Syria, reviewing the Protection visa decision may take at least six months.

    Under the Migration Act, the Minister is given the power to allow a person who would otherwise be barred to make a second application for a Protection visa.

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