What we can review

We can review the following decisions made by a delegate of the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection under the Migration Act 1958:

  • to refuse or cancel a visa, including a protection visa on character test grounds under section 501
  • to not revoke the mandatory cancellation of your visa on character test grounds under section 501CA
  • to refuse a protection visa on character grounds under sections 5H(2), 36(1C) or 36(2C).

The decision letter will tell you if we can review the decision and if you are a person who can apply for a review.

Most refusals of protection visas are not based on character grounds. See other parts of our website for information about the review of:

  • other decisions to refuse or cancel a protection (refugee) visa, or
  • other visa and visa-related decisions.

Expedited review of decisions

Special rules and strict time limits apply to a review of a decision to refuse or cancel a visa under s501 or to not revoke a mandatory cancellation of a visa under section 501CA of the Migration Act if the visa applicant or person whose visa has been cancelled is in Australia. Find more information in the Expedited review of decisions under section 501 or 501CA of the Migration Act 1958 fact sheet.

What we cannot do

  • review a decision under section 501 or 501CA made by the Minister personally
  • review the mandatory cancellation of a visa under section 501(3A) of the Migration Act: you must first apply to the Department for revocation of the mandatory cancellation.