Hundreds Of Immigration Cases Unresolved

Hundreds of immigration cases unresolved

August 12, 2009

There are more than 700 immigration cases before the nation's courts with most of them taking nearly half a year to resolve.

The Federal Magistrates Court, which the government plans to abolish, was considering the majority of active cases – 480 at the end of September 2008 – and was taking the longest time, an average of 167 days, to finalise them.

The Federal Court had 141 cases in its list and the High Court, the final avenue of appeal, had 113 cases.

The High Court considered its immigration cases more quickly than the other jurisdictions, averaging 96 days for each case.

The figures were contained in a written answer by Attorney-General Robert McClelland to a question by the opposition's immigration spokeswoman Sharman Stone.

Meanwhile, Immigration Minister Chris Evans, as at May 8, 2009, was considering requests for asylum from 382 people whose application for protection had been rejected previously.