+61 2 9161 9999

Administrative Appeals Tribunal


In accordance with Commonwealth laws, administrative decisions are subject to independent merits review by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT). We examine decisions made by ministers, departments, and agencies of the Australian Government as well as, in rare instances, decisions made by state governments and non-governmental organizations. We also examine judgments rendered in accordance with Norfolk Island laws.

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal Act of 1975 created the AAT, which went into operation on July 1st, 1976.

On July 1st, 2015, the AAT merged with the Migration Review Tribunal, Refugee Review Tribunal, and Social Security Appeals Tribunal.

The Attorney General is responsible for the AAT. Read a few of the Attorney General's press statements and announcements about the AAT.

We have a video guide that goes over the AAT in further detail.

Functions and powers


Only if a law specifically allows the AAT to review the decision can we review it.

More than 400 Commonwealth Acts and other legislative instruments are subject to review. The decisions that we evaluate most frequently concern:

  • Child assistance
  • Workers' compensation of the common wealth
  • Financial support for families, paid parental leave, social security, and student aid
  • Decisions regarding immigration, refugee, and visa-related matters
  • Taxation,
  • veteran benefits

We also review decisions relating to:

  • I am an Australian citizen.
  • Bankruptcy
  • Civil Aviation
  • Regulation of Corporations and Financial Services
  • Customs
  • Information Freedom
  • The National Disability Insurance Program
  • Passports
  • Australian Security Intelligence Organisation security evaluations.

We can also examine judgments rendered in accordance with a select few Norfolk Island regulations, such as judgments regarding construction, property valuation, and planning.

We don't always examine decisions as the first step. In some instances, we are unable to review a judgment until the originating decision has undergone internal review or review by a specialized authority, such as the Veterans' Review Board.

In some cases, decisions that have already been reviewed by our Social Services & Child Support Division may be subject to a second review. Our General Division conducts a second review.