Published: 15 June, 2020

COVID-19: Important information for migration applicants (updated)

Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia Applications Only

Next steps after you lodge your application

You must serve these documents on the Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs, which can currently be done by email. Email the documents to

Role of the Court

The Court has limited power in reviewing the decision of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal, the Immigration Assessment Authority or another body.

The Registry cannot make decisions as to whether you should receive a visa before your case is decided. If you have questions about your visa status while your case is pending, please contact the Department of Immigration.

Directions Hearing

On the front page of your stamped documents will be details about the directions hearing. A directions hearing is about when parties need to file documents in the case and is procedural.

During the COVID-19 closures, there will be no required attendance at court.

You will be contacted by the legal representative for the Minister with proposed consent orders for you to sign and return.

If you need the orders interpreted, let the Minister’s lawyers know and they will arrange an interpreter.

If your application relates to a protection visa, you will be provided the details to contact a representative from Legal Aid.

If you do not agree to the Minister’s proposed consent orders, on the day of your directions hearing, the Court will make orders on the papers. These orders will be emailed to you or, if you do not have an email, posted to you.

You will be advised when in-person lists recommence.

Applicant’s Contact Details

It is important that the Court be able to contact you. If you change your address, phone number or email address, you are required to let the court know by completing a new Notice of Address for Service form.

You can then file the Notice of Address for Service:

The fax and postal details for each registry can be found on the Federal Court website.

You will be required to serve a sealed copy of this form on the legal representative for the Minister.

Recording of Tribunal Hearing

You can obtain from the Administrative Appeals Tribunal a recording of the hearing at the Tribunal. If you do not have a copy, speak to the Minister's solicitor to request a copy. If you intend to use the recording as part of your application to the Court, a written transcript of the hearing should be obtained and verified by way of affidavit.

Court Fees

When you are given a final hearing date you will receive an invoice for payment of a "setting down" fee (as required by the Federal Court and Federal Circuit and Family Court Regulation 2012 (Cth)). This fee must be paid no later than 28 days before the hearing day. The fee is currently $805. If you wish to make an application for financial hardship, please complete an exemption application form which is available on the Federal Court's website. This form should be forwarded to the Registry for consideration as soon as possible. Please note that if you discontinue your proceeding after it has been set down for hearing the setting down fee will still be payable.


Once the matter is given a date for final hearing, if you do not have a lawyer to represent you, you will need to be ready to tell the Court about your case (with an interpreter if required).

The Court will contact you, in writing, to make arrangements for your hearing in light of the COVID-19 outbreak. Please check your contact details with the Court are up to date, then wait to be contacted.


At the conclusion of the proceeding in the Court, the court will usually order that the unsuccessful party pay the legal costs and expenses incurred by the successful party. These costs are different from Court fees that are payable to the Court Registry for filing your application and for the setting down of the hearing.  If you are unsuccessful or discontinue your proceeding in this Court, you may still be required to pay the Minister's legal costs. If you wish to organise a payment plan or otherwise discuss these costs, please email .

Registry Contact Details

For all communication with the Court, please only email the proper registry for your matter.


Email for filing

Email for enquiries

Australian Capital Territory

New South Wales

Northern Territory


South Australia


Victoria (for fees enquiries only)

Western Australia