Ministerial Intervention

You can make a request for ministerial intervention if you have received a decision by a review tribunal. This is because the minister’s public interest powers need a review tribunal decision to exist before he can intervene. A ‘review tribunal’ means the Refugee Review Tribunal (RRT), the Migration Review Tribunal (MRT) or, in certain circumstances, the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT).

Ministerial intervention can only be requested in unique or exceptional circumstances, in these particular cases the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship can be requested to intervene in the case. The minister will look at the history of similar cases and will base his decision around the facts of the applicant rather than legislation alone.

Unique or exceptional circumstances include:

  • Circumstances that may bring Australia’s obligations as a party to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CROC) into consideration Under CROC, the best interests of a child will be considered as a primary consideration. This includes you, if aged under 18, or a child with whom you have a close relationship. Example: Your child, stepchild.
  • Strong compassionate circumstances such that failure to recognise them would result in irreparable harm and continuing hardship to an Australian citizen or permanent resident should you leave the country.
  • Exceptional economic, scientific, cultural or other benefit to Australia.
  • Compassionate circumstances regarding your age and/or health and/or psychological state such that failure to recognise them would result in irreparable harm and continuing hardship to you.
  • Length of time you have been present in Australia and your level of integration into the Australian community.
  • Circumstances that the legislation does not anticipate or clearly unintended consequences of legislation or the application of relevant legislation leads to unfair or unreasonable results.
  • You are unable, through circumstances outside your control, to return to your country/countries of citizenship or usual residence.

Active Migration Australia will assist you with the construction of the case and present the case to the Minister on your behalf. If you believe you have a case for ministerial intervention or would like assistance putting together a ministerial intervention application our registered migration agents are able to assist.

DIAC advises You should not assume the minister will intervene in your case. As this power is intended to operate as a 'safety net', the minister generally only intervenes in a relatively small number of cases. This means you are expected to continue to make arrangements to depart Australia while your request is being processed. If the minister does not intervene, you are expected to leave Australia as soon as possible.