When you have been notified that your citizenship application has been refused and you are not prepared to accept it, we are here to help.
We are experienced immigration lawyers who provide you with clear options and legal representation.
We are here for you when it matters most.
Sydney (02) 9098 6999
Citizenship Application Refused
Many Australian citizenship applications are refused each year. The most common reasons for citizenship application refusals are:
- Failing the citizenship test
- Failure to meet character requirements (criminal offences)
- Failure to meet residency requirements
- Failure to prove identity
If you have received notification of a citizenship application refusal, you may appeal the refusal decision through the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) or the Courts.
Tribunal (AAT) Review
The Tribunal has strict time limitations and if you do not lodge a review application with the Tribunal in time, it will be what’s known as an invalid application and if it’s an invalid application, you will have no review rights at the Tribunal.
One of the benefits of having your matter reviewed at the Tribunal is that the Tribunal is not a part of the Department of Home Affairs who made the refusal decision.
The Tribunal hearing is what’s known as a Merits Review and a Merits Review is basically a second chance. At a Merits Review, all the information will be considered including any evidence that we are able to compile for you up to and including the date of the Tribunal review hearing.
What Visa & Citizenship Lawyers will do for you if you want to appeal to the Tribunal
Visa & Citizenship Lawyers will:
- Assess the refusal and inform you of the strengths and weaknesses of your case;
- Lodge a review application with the Tribunal;
- Inform you what information will help your case and guide you during the waiting time for the Tribunal review with preparing evidence;
- Draft detailed Submissions and lodge with the Tribunal;
- Attend the Tribunal hearing with you and assist you in presenting your case before the Tribunal;
- Draft further detailed Submissions (if necessary), before the Tribunal Member has made their decision.
Appeal to the Courts
The Courts that may be appealed to for immigration matters are:
- The Federal Circuit Court of Australia (FCCA)
- The Federal Court of Australia (FCA)
- The High Court of Australia
Appealing a refusal decision to the Courts is only available in certain circumstances which include appealing a decision by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) to uphold the Department of Home Affairs refusal or decision.
The difference between a Tribunal Hearing and a Court Hearing
A Tribunal Hearing is what’s known as a Merits Review. At a Merits Review, all information is heard again along with any new evidence. A Merits Review hearing is essentially a re-hearing.
A Court hearing is what’s known as a Judicial Review. Judicial review is not the re-hearing of the merits of a particular case. Rather, it is where a court reviews a decision to make sure that the decision-maker used the correct legal reasoning or followed the correct legal procedures.
On Judicial Review, if a court finds that a decision has been made unlawfully, the powers of the court will generally be confined to setting the decision aside and remitting the matter to the decision-maker for reconsideration according to law. There will be circumstances in which although a decision is not the correct or preferable decision on the facts, it will not be open to Judicial Review.
What Visa & Citizenship Lawyers will do for you if you want to appeal to the Court.
Visa & Citizenship Lawyers will:
- Assess your matter and inform you of the strengths and weaknesses of your case;
- Lodge a review application with the Court;
- Apply for a new bridging visa for you so that you can remain lawful in Australia (if required);
- Prepare evidence for the Court hearing;
- Attend the Court hearing with you and assist you in presenting your case before the Court.