This article will discuss reports on persons in detention for more than 2 years. Immigration detention in Australia is the detention of people who are not Australian citizens. Unlawful non-citizens can be subjected to immigration detention. Such people include who:
- Arrive in Australia without a valid visa;
- Overstay their visa; or
- Have their visa canceled.
There are a number of reasons why people might be detained for more than 2 years. In some cases, it may take a long time for the Australian government to process a person’s asylum application. In other cases, people may be detained because they are considered to be a security risk or because they have a criminal record.
People who are detained for more than 2 years are entitled to have courts review their detention on a regular basis. Do you want to learn more about provisions reports on persons in detention for more than 2 years? We have prepared this article to outline relevant provisions under the Migration Act 1958.
Section 486L: What Is the Detention Reporting Start Time for a Person?
Section 486L of reports on persons in detention for more than 2 years outlines the detention reporting start time. The detention reporting start time is when a person has been in immigration detention for:
- A period of 2 years; or
- Periods that total at least 2 years
These periods can either be from:
- The time when this Part of the Act commences; or
- A later time
However, this will depend on whether the person was already in immigration detention before the Act commenced.
Section 486M: What Is a Detention Reporting Time for a Person?
The Section 486M of reports on persons in detention for more than 2 years states that detention reporting time for a person is either:
- The detention reporting start time for the person, which is the time when they have been in immigration detention for 2 years or more; or
- The end of each successive period of 6 months after the detention reporting start time, at the end of which the person is still in immigration detention.
Section 486N: Secretary’s Obligation to Report to Commonwealth Ombudsman
Section 486N of reports on persons in detention for more than 2 years discusses the Secretary’s obligations. The Secretary must give the Commonwealth Ombudsman a report about the circumstances of a person’s detention. The report must be given:
- As soon as possible, and in any event within 6 months, after that commencement. This is if the detention reporting time is the time when this Part commences.
- Within 21 days after the detention reporting time. This is if the detention reporting time is any other time.
The report must include any matters specified in regulations made for the purposes of this subsection. This is the case even if the person has ceased to be in immigration detention since the detention reporting time.
Section 486O: Commonwealth Ombudsman to Give Minister Assessment of Detention Arrangements
Section 486O of reports on persons in detention for more than 2 years discusses assessment of detention arrangements. The Commonwealth Ombudsman must give the Minister an assessment of the appropriateness of the arrangements for a person’s detention. This must be made as soon as possible after receiving a report under section 486N. The assessment may include recommendations, such as:
- Continued detention of the person
- Another form of detention, such as residing at a place in accordance with a residence determination
- Release into the community on a visa
- General recommendations relating to the Department’s handling of its detainee caseload
The Minister is not bound by any recommendations the Commonwealth Ombudsman makes. The assessment must also include a statement for the purpose of tabling in Parliament. The Ombudsman must give the assessment to the Minister even if the person has ceased to be in immigration detention since the detention reporting time.
Section 486P: Minister to Table Statement From Commonwealth Ombudsman
Section 486P of reports on persons in detention for more than 2 years discusses how the minister will table statement. To table a report or document in Parliament means to present it to Parliament for discussion. When a report or document is tabled, it becomes available to all members of Parliament and to the public.
The Minister must table the statement for Parliament included in the assessment. He/she must do this within 15 sitting days of receiving the Commonwealth Ombudsman’s assessment of the appropriateness of a person’s detention arrangements.
Section 486Q: Application of the Ombudsman Act 1976
Section 486Q discusses the application of the Ombudsman Act 1976. The Commonwealth Ombudsman must follow Ombudsman Act 1976 rules when assessing a person’s detention arrangements. Additionally, the Commonwealth Ombudsman has the same powers when preparing an assessment as they would when investigating a complaint.
Seeking Legal Advice About Reports on Persons in Detention for More Than 2 Years
Immigration detention can cause a complex and stressful experience for a number of reasons like:
- Uncertainty about the length of detainment
- Isolation from family and friends
- Fear of deportation
- Lack of access to information and support
- Language barriers
If you or someone you know is in immigration detention, it is important to seek legal advice as soon as possible. A lawyer can help you understand your rights and options, and can represent you in any legal proceedings. We at JB Solicitors specialise in immigration law.
Moreover, we have a team of experienced immigration lawyers who can provide you with expert advice and representation on all aspects of immigration detention. We understand the challenges that people in detention face, and we are committed to helping our clients achieve the best possible outcome.
Do you have more questions about immigration detention? Are you looking for legal help for someone who is in immigration detention? If so, please contact JB Solicitors today for a free consultation. We are here to help you.