This report examines the human rights implications of policies affecting asylum seekers in the ‘Legacy Caseload’.
The Legacy Caseload is a group of approximately 30,000 asylum seekers who arrived in Australia by boat prior to 1 January 2014 and were permitted to remain in Australia in order to lodge applications for substantive visas, but had not had their status resolved by this date.
People in the Legacy Caseload come from many countries of origin, including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Burma (Myanmar), Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, Pakistan, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Sudan and Vietnam. A significant number are stateless.
Due to a number of changes to legal and policy settings since 2012, asylum seekers in the Legacy Caseload are treated differently from other groups of asylum seekers. They have also faced lengthy delays in the processing of their visa applications.
Because the Legacy Caseload comprises a distinct group of asylum seekers, the Commission has conducted research and consultations to gain a better understanding of the practical issues and challenges faced by people in this group.
The project set out to examine the human rights implications of policies adopted by successive Australian Governments affecting asylum seekers in the Legacy Caseload. The report, which builds on previous research, aims to clarify Australia’s human rights obligations in relation to people in the Legacy Caseload, and to identify policies and practices that may be inconsistent with these obligations.