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Visa refusal AAT

How much will an AAT review cost and how long will it take?

By 26 February, 2024June 21st, 2024No Comments4 min read

AAT fees

If you disagree with a visa refusal decision, you may be able to apply for a “merits review” application to Migration and Refugee (M&R) Division of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT). The AAT are not bound by the refusal decision made by the Department and will reconsider each case on their own merits. More information about the AAT review process and what to expect can be found on our website here.

It is important to note that most refusal decisions must be appealed within either 21 or 28 days after the notification of the decision. However, this does vary depending on the type of refusal decision, and we recommend you get legal advice.

The cost of an AAT review, and how long it will take to get an outcome, is often people’s first questions, which we’ve addressed below.

How much does it cost to apply to the Tribunal?

To lodge an AAT review application for most migration decisions you will need to pay an application fee. As of 1 July 2024, this is currently $3,496 (the most current fee can be found here).

You do not have to pay an upfront application fee for a protection visa refusal review, however if your review is unsuccessful you will have to pay a fee of $2,151.

You may be eligible for a fee reduction of 50if the AAT decides that paying the fee would cause you severe financial hardship. In such a case, this would bring the fee for most reviews down to $1,748. When assessing fee reduction applications, the AAT will consider your capacity to pay the full fee, and whether payment of the full fee would mean you would not be able to meet essential living expenses.

If the review is decided in your favour, you will be refunded 50% of the total amount you paid (50% of either the full fee, or of the reduced fee).

If you withdraw your review application for review, a refund of the fee is only paid in very limited circumstances.

What are the processing times for a Tribunal appeal?

The time taken from when an application for review is made, to when a decision is made varies quite significantly. Unfortunately, a lot of appeals are currently taking several months (even years) to process.

The Tribunal publish their current processing times on their website here, which is broken down by case categories. This includes the processing times for review for bridging, family, nomination/sponsor approvals, partner, permanent business, skilled linked, student cancellation, student refusal, temporary work, visitor, protection, and other.

As an example, for cases finalised between 1 July 2023 to 30 December 2023, the Tribunal publish that for:

Partner refusals

  • 50% are finalised in 789 days
  • 95% are finalised in 1634 days

Student refusals

  • 50% are finalised in 435 days
  • 95% are finalised in 608 days

Visitor refusals

  • 50% are finalised in 326 days
  • 95% are finalised in 436 days

Nomination/Sponsor refusals

  • 50% are finalised in 1306 days
  • 95% are finalised in 1464 days

Temporary Work refusals

  • 50% are finalised in 903 days
  • 95% are finalised in 436 days

Cases are prioritised in line with the President’s Direction on Prioritising Cases in Migration and Refugee Division (see here). If you meet the requirements, can request that your application for review is assessed as a matter of priority if you fully explain your reasons and provide supporting evidence.

Do you require further assistance?

Our Team at Hannan Tew have significant experience in advising on, and assisting with, Tribunal applications.

Our estimated fee for assisting with an AAT review is $5,000 (exclusive of GST, government surcharges, government lodgement fees and other disbursements). This may differ depending on your individual circumstances so please speak to us directly to get a tailored fixed fee quote.

If you require assistance with an AAT review, or have any other immigration related queries, get in touch with our experienced team. Contact us by email at [email protected] or by phone at +61 3 9016 0484.

This document does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney-client relationship. Please consult an immigration professional for up to date information.
Brittney McCann

Author Brittney McCann

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