Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Statutory Review of the Amalgamated AAT Tabled

Media release

The Government today tabled the Statutory Review of the amalgamated Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

The review was a statutory requirement under the Tribunals Amalgamation Act 2015 and was conducted by former Justice of the High Court of Australia, the Hon Ian Callinan AC.

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal provides a one-stop shop for the independent review of a wide-range of decisions made by the Australian Government.

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal was amalgamated with the former Social Security Appeals Tribunal, the Migration Review Tribunal and the Refugee Review Tribunal, following the commencement of the Tribunals Amalgamation Act 2015 on 1 July 2015.

This was a significant reform to Australia's administrative law framework, designed to improve efficiency and reduce costs under the previous system and the Act required a review to commence three years after the commencement of the amalgamated Tribunal.

Mr Callinan was asked to evaluate the amalgamated Tribunal and identify further improvements that could enhance the work of the Tribunal and Commonwealth merits review processes.

Since amalgamation, the Tribunal's workload has increased significantly, particularly in the Migration and Refugee Division. The Government is carefully considering the recommendations from Mr Callinan's report and is committed to improving the efficiency of the Tribunal and maintaining the integrity of Australia's migration policy. 

The Attorney-General said he looked forward to continuing to work with his colleagues and the Tribunal to ensure the amalgamated Tribunal's success. The Government will formally respond to the report in due course.

"I sincerely thank Mr Callinan and his counsel assisting for their dedication and hard work in undertaking this review," the Attorney-General said.

A copy of the report is available on the Attorney-General's Department website.