Book with gavel

The process of determining whether a person is a refugee is difficult. This page lists some key resources on the process.

Handbook and Guidelines on Procedures and Criteria for Determining Refugee Status (UNHCR, 2011)

The Handbook and the Guidelines provided a detailed analysis of issues to be considered when assessing applications for refugee status.

Deported to Danger II: The Continuing Study of Australia’s Treatment of Rejected Asylum Seekers (Edmund Rice Centre, 2006)

This report follows on from a 2004 study examining the fate of asylum seekers who were found not to be refugees and deported by Australia. Of the 41 people interviewed as part of the study, all had been deported to dangerous circumstances.

Deported to Danger: A Study of Australia’s Treatment of 40 Rejected Asylum Seekers (Edmund Rice Centre, 2004)

This report examines the fate of 40 asylum seekers who were found not to be refugees and deported by Australia. It found that 35 of the 40 were living in dangerous circumstances after deportation and only five were clearly safe in the longer term.

A Case for Justice: Position paper on the legal process of seeking asylum in Australia (Asylum Seeker Resource Centre)

This paper provides an overview of the refugee status determination system in Australia and presents recommendations for improving assessment processes and decision-making.

Refugee Review Tribunal decisions (1993-1 July 2015)

Administrative Appeals Tribunal decisions (1 July 2015-present)

The Refugee Review Tribunal (RRT), from 1993 to 1 July 2015, reviewed decisions made in relation to Protection Visa applications. It was required to publish decisions that are considered to be of “particular interest”. Statements of decision are available from 1993 to 1 July 2015 focusing on a wide range of countries of origin and grounds for refugee status. On 1 July 2015, the Tribunal was merged into the Administrative Appeals Tribunal, as part of the Migration and Refugee Division.