REGULATORY IMPACT STATEMENT – IMMIGRATION ACT:
Statement of the Public Policy Objective
To develop a transparent, efficient and fair deportation framework that clearly
sets out a noncitizen’s rights and obligations.
Statement of Feasible Options
How deportation liability is triggered and how it can be cancelled
Status quo, Policy Problem and Magnitude: The Immigration Act 1987 (the
1987 Act) makes noncitizens who have overstayed liable for removal (unless
they appeal within 42 days of the expiry of their permit). No administrative or
court action is required to make them liable. In contrast, other deportation
processes require a ministerial order to initiate, for example in cases of residents
who are criminal offenders.
The requirement for ministerial involvement in deportation may not be necessary
where the grounds for deportation liability were clear in the statute and where
appeals were available. Requiring all decisions to be taken at the ministerial level
Preferred Option: Noncitizens would be liable for deportation when they come
within criteria specified in the legislation. There would be a delegable ministerial
power to intervene to cancel deportation liability, but the Minister of Immigration
(Minister) or delegated officer would not be compelled to consider or make any
Net Benefit of the Proposal: The proposal improves the deportation framework
by removing the compulsion for ministerial involvement in deportation decisions.
It reduces the chances for delay arising from challenges to the initial decision to
make a noncitizen liable for deportation. The retention of the ability of the
Minister to intervene provides an opportunity for deserving cases to be taken out
of the deportation process and would reinforce confidence in the system.
Greater clarity in the deportation framework would make it clearer to noncitizens
when they would be liable for deportation. It provides noncitizens a clear
pathway to a single independen