Denied Application

If the Visa and Refugee Commission rejects your refugee status application, you have the right to challenge the decision and appeal within three business days. UNHCR, through its partner agency ACAI, can provide you with free legal guidance and counseling to help you present your appeal. Keep in mind that you only have three business days to create and present the appeal. Therefore it is important that you go to ACAI immediately upon being notified of the denial. For this consultation, ideally you should bring a copy of the interview you had at the Department of Refugees when you began the process. If you do not have one, you should ask for a copy at the Department of Refugees as soon as you are notified of the denial.

If you receive a second denial notification from the Commission, the Department of Refugees will refer your appeal to the Tribunal Administrativo Migratorio (Administrative Migration Tribunal). In this case, you may ask for an oral hearing before the TAM so they can analyze your case. You should request this oral hearing at the Department of Refugees as soon as you receive the second denial. The TAM will make the definitive decision about whether you are recognized as a refugee or not.

If your refugee status application is denied definitively before the TAM, you must legalize your residency in the country through another migration category or return voluntarily to your country of origin. If you do not legalize your status, you may be deported.