Failing to Pass Australian Citizenship Test Resulted in a Refusal

Why Was the Applicant Australian Citizenship Refused?

 

The Applicant applied for citizenship conferral on 18 Jan 2016. She failed the citizenship test 3 times between April to May 2016 and also failed a course-based test and an assisted test.

 On 3 Jan 2018, the application was rejected and the Applicant subsequently appealed to the Tribunal on 22 Jan 2018.

 The Applicant sought to set aside the decision on the ground that she has a permanent or enduring physical or mental incapacity under s 21(3)(d) of the Australian Citizenship Act 2007, and as such she should be granted citizenship without taking the citizenship test.

 The issue in this case was whether or not the Applicant is entitled to citizenship by conferral without taking the required citizenship test due to an enduring physical or mental incapacity.

THE TRIBUNAL’S REASONING

To meet the requirements set out in s 21(3)(d) of the Act, the Applicant must produce evidence from a qualified medical practitioner which shows that the enduring incapability is one which has no predictable recovery or that the Applicant would not reasonably be expected to make recovery before the Applicant becomes otherwise eligible for a grant of citizenship.

The following medical reports were considered by the Tribunal: 

l  Dr Dowla’s (a consultant in neurology and clinical neurophysiology) report: The Applicant is suffering from severe depression and bereavement

l  Mr Jolan’s (an endorsed clinical psychologist) report: The Applicant is suffering from severe anxiety, major depression and chronic pain. The Applicant is unfit to prepare or sit for the citizenship test due to psychological and physical limitations

l  Dr Banks’ (a consultant clinical psychologist) report: provided detailed history of the Applicant and administered tests and assessment and concluded that the Applicant’s psychological profile is not sufficient to warrant excluding her from the application process. Although she experiences major depression, the level of distress is not considered to be pervasive enough to impact her learning as shown during testing. The Applicant does not appear to suffer from a permanent or enduring physical or mental incapacity. 

Dr Dowla’s and Mr Jolan’s reports were not accompanied by the relevant tests to establish the diagnoses. Preference was given to Dr Banks’ report by the Tribunal due to more detailed and thorough assessment, evidence of relevant test and a more detailed appreciation of the processes of the citizenship test regime. As a result, based on Dr Banks’ report, the Tribunal concluded that the Applicant fails to meet the requirement of s 21(3)(d), because she does not have an enduring physical or mental incapacity that she cannot undertake the citizenship test.

 

The Tribunal suggested an alternative path available to the Applicant under s 21(4) of the Australian Citizenship Act 2007. The Applicant is eligible to make an application for citizenship under this section when she reaches the age of 60 on 1 July 2020.

 KEY TAKEAWAYS

 To satisfy the requirement of s 21(3)(d) of the Australian Citizenship Act 2007 and therefore be eligible for citizenship by conferral without taking the citizenship test, an Applicant must provide evidence from a qualified medical practitioner and these medical reports should be accompanied by the relevant tests and assessment to establish that the Applicant has an enduring physical or mental incapacity which prevent them from undertaking the citizenship test.

 

CONTACT US

 If you have any questions or would like us to assist you with applying for Australian Citizenship, please contact us for more information.

At Agape Henry Crux, our lawyers are well trained to handle highly complex matters so book one of our lawyers to seek professional advice now by calling (02)-7200 2700 or email us to book in a time at info@ahclawyers.com . We speak fluent English, Mandarin, Cantonese, Indonesian and Malay. If these aren’t your language, we can also help you arrange an interpreter.

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