If you have recently been refused or cancelled an Australian visa, and disagree with the decision, you can appeal against the Department of Home Affairs (DoHA) at the Administrative Appeal Tribunal (AAT). Administrative Appeal Tribunal (AAT) provides independent merits review of a wide range of administrative decisions made by the Australian Government including the Department of Home Affairs (DoHA). Migration reviews are done in the Migration and Refugee Division of the AAT under Part 5 of the Migration Act.

They can review decisions made under the Migration Act 1958:

  • To refuse to approve a nomination of occupation, activity, or position
  • To bar, refuse to approve, or cancel the approval of a sponsor
  • Relating to requiring security.
They have the power to:

  • Relating to requiring security.
  • Affirm the decision: the decision is not changed.
  • Vary the decision: the decision is changed.
  • Set aside the decision and substitute a new decision: the decision is replaced with a new decision.
  • Remit the decision: the matter is sent back to the Department to make a new decision.

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The decision letter from the Department of Home Affairs will tell you if we can review the decision and if you are a person who can apply for a review. If you have a right to review, you must lodge the AAT appeal within 21 days. However, the timeframe can vary depending on the type of decision and the method by which you were notified of the decision. If you could not lodge the AAT appeal within the stipulated time on your visa decision letter, you would in general lose your right to review.


  • Apply for a review at AAT online
  • Pre-hearing
  • Hearing
  • Decision

If AAT remits the decision, AAT will forward your case back to the Department of Home Affairs (DoHA) to make a new decision. However, if the AAT affirmed the decision, you may be able to lodge a further appeal to the Federal Circuit Court.