Asylum Explained

A guide to the process of seeking asylum in Australia

To find out more about each of the possible outcomes for your case and what they mean please click on the headings below.

If the RRT decides you are a refugee and remits your case to the DIAC

If the RRT decides that you are a refugee this means that you won your case. The RRT cannot give you a visa directly. If your decision says that the RRT “remits” your case to the DIAC, then this means that the RRT is sending your case back to the DIAC so that they can grant you a Protection visa. For more information about what this means for you, please click here.

Even if the RRT finds that you are a refugee, the DIAC can only grant you a visa after you have completed their health and character checks. For more information about health and character checks that the DIAC requires, please click here.

If the RRT affirms the DIAC decision

This means that the RRT looked at your case and agreed with the DIAC officer that you are not a refugee. This means that the DIAC decision to refuse you a Protection visa is confirmed by the RRT. If this happens you have two further options to have your case reviewed. You can either apply to the court or to the Minister.

For more information about each of these options and to help you understand which is best for you, please click on the links below:

  • Stage 3: Judicial review by a Court – “Judge
  • Stage 4: Intervention by the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship – “Minister

If you are in the community on a bridging visa it will usually expire 28 days after you are notified of the negative decision from the RRT.

It will be important to decide whether you want to have your case reviewed and to make an application before your bridging visa expires so that you can remain lawful in the community and protect your legal rights.

If the RRT refers your case to the Minister

Sometimes the RRT will think that you should stay in Australia but your case falls outside of the Refugee Convention definition. This can be because your case is humanitarian but doesn’t fit in the strict definition of who a refugee is.

If this happens, the RRT cannot give you a positive decision in your case, but they can refer your case to the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship and ask him to intervene in your case to give you a permanent visa to stay in Australia.

If this happens you can also send more information to the Minister so that he can get a full picture of your situation before he makes his decision. You can find out more about making a request to the Minister by clicking here.

An initiative of the ASRC:

Legal Services Board
Victoria's Legal Services Board is an independent regulator that protects consumers and enhances the integrity of legal services in Victoria.

This website provides general information to people seeking asylum in Australia through the onshore visa application process. We have tried to make sure that this information is correct and that nothing important has been left out. However, we cannot guarantee this because immigration law is complex and changes regularly.
The information on this website is not legal advice. You should not rely on this website to make decisions about your immigration situation. We strongly recommend that you get independent advice from a registered migration agent. For information about registered migration agents please visit
Asylum Seeker Resource Centre

The Asylum Seeker Resource Centre does not take responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of any information on this website and to the extent permitted by law, excludes any liability for any loss or damage suffered as a result of relying on the information contained on or accessed through his website.

The information on this website is current as at January 2012.

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