Refused Visa Application

What is this notice saying?

If the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) have decided to refuse your visa application, they will send you a ‘notification of refusal of application’. DIAC will also send you a ‘Decision Record’ outlining why your visa application has been refused.

What does this mean for me?

You will not be able to remain legally in Australia after your current visa expires unless you lodge an application to have your case reviewed.

Can I have the decision reviewed?

Your letter from DIAC will specify whether you can have the decision reviewed. If you wish to have your case reviewed, you must apply to the Migration Review Tribunal (MRT). The MRT is separate to DIAC, and will consider your case over. The MRT has the power to change DIAC’s decision. Your ‘notification of refusal of your application’ will specify how long you have to apply for a review, this is usually 21 days. If you do not apply within this time frame generally the MRT cannot review your case.

If you were on a bridging visa while your visa application was being processed it will remain in effect while your case is reviewed by the MRT. If you were on a substantive and it expires while the MRT is reviewing your case, you will be granted a bridging visa to allow you to stay in Australia lawfully while the MRT reviews your case.

The application fee to have a case reviewed by the MRT is currently $1540 for all cases except applications for review of bridging visa decisions made by persons in immigration detention. The fee might be reduced to $770 if the full payment is likely to cause you severe financial hardship. If the Tribunal finds in your favor they will refund you $770.

What will the review process involve?

The process can vary from case to case, but generally speaking if you make a request to have your case reviewed the following will happen:

  • The MRT will send you an acknowledgement letter confirming that they received your application. They will inform DIAC and request from them the documents relevant to your file.
  • Your case will be allocated a Tribunal Member.
  • The Tribunal Member will review all the documents that DIAC provided them.
  • You may be invited to attend a hearing, and/or to provide information or to comment or respond to information.
  • The MRT will make a decision and inform both DIAC and yourself of the decision and its reasons.

Processing times vary on a case by case basis.

What documents should I provide to support my case?

The MRT will have access to all the documents that DIAC used to make their decision regarding your visa application. You are also entitled to have access to this documentation. You can provide written submissions and documentary evidence to the MRT.

You should provide documentation that shows why you believe DIAC should not have refused your visa application. For example, if DIAC refused your application on the ground that you provided ‘bogus documents’ you need to show that the documents were not bogus. You might therefore include statutory declarations from people supporting your claim that the documents were not bogus.

Who can help me regarding the refused visa application?

You can contact the MRT directly and ask for information about the Tribunal’s procedures however they cannot give you advice about your chances of success. If you are planning to have your application reviewed, a Registered Migration Agent can help you with preparing your case.

If you have any queries or need assistance with appealing your application through the MRT, feel free to contact our Migration Team.

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