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Tribunal: Member M Urquhart

The AAT affirmed a decision of a delegate of the Minister for Immigration refusing to grant the applicant an aged parent visa.

The applicant lived in Australia and first applied for residence as the aged parent of a citizen (her daughter) in 2016. However, the Department refused the application because her husband, who was also in Australia on a medical treatment visa, did not want to be medically assessed during the application process.

Despite her husband’s fragility and reluctance to be assessed by doctors, the Tribunal found he could not refuse.

Australian visa applicants, and all members of their family unit, must agree to an independent medical professional assessing their health, both to rule out public health threats and to identify any chance they will need significant and costly health care in the future. This health criterion is directed at assessing what impact a decision granting the visa will have on the broader community.

The issue for the AAT was whether the husband, who was not an applicant to the visa, was required to meet the health criteria or if it was unreasonable for him to undergo a medical assessment.

The applicant had lived here for 10 years and helped her daughter, who was a single parent, look after and care for her granddaughter, allowing her daughter to work. Her husband who was in his 80s had a long history of illness, would have difficulty travelling if asked to leave and had a limited life expectancy. At the time of the hearing he was a patient at Westmead Hospital.

The AAT acknowledged the difficult circumstances of the applicant and her family but found the husband did not have a good reason exempting him from undergoing a medical assessment.

However, the Tribunal referred the application to the Minister who, in exceptional circumstances, including strong compassionate circumstances, can make a more favourable decision.

Read the full decision