In the FMC a person called a ‘Federal Magistrate’ is the decision maker in your case. The Federal Magistrate is like a judge, but in the Magistrates court they are called a “Federal Magistrate”.
What does the Federal Magistrate consider?
The Federal Magistrate can only consider whether an error of law was made in your RRT decision or in the way the RRT Member decided your case.
What is an error of law?
When we say that the FMC will only consider an “error of law” this means that the FMC cannot consider the facts of your case again, it can only consider the way that the RRT made its decision. If the FMC decides that the RRT made a mistake in the way it decided your case, or in the way it applied the law to your case or used other legal processes in deciding your case, then this means your case is successful at the FMC. The FMC will not make any decision about your actual refugee claims. They will only make a decision about whether the RRT decided your case properly.
What can the Federal Magistrate look at when they decide my case?
The Federal Magistrate can look at:
- How the RRT conducted the hearing; and
- Whether the RRT followed the proper legal processes; and
- Whether the RRT properly considered all the different parts of your refugee claims; and
- How the RRT considered your supporting documents in coming to the decision; and
- How the RRT considered the information about your country in coming to the decision.
What the Federal Magistrate CANNOT do when they decide your case
- Cannot consider the facts of your case unless they are relevant to the way the RRT decided your case.
- Cannot make a new decision about whether you are a refugee.
- Cannot consider new information or evidence about your refugee claim which the RRT didn’t have when it made its decision.