- Direction 99, a ministerial direction made pursuant to s 499 of the Migration Act 1958 (Cth), comes into effect on 3 March 2023.
- Direction 99 regulates character matters associated with non-citizens and provides greater focus on a non-citizen’s links to Australia (unlike Direction 90).
- Although Direction 99 is a step in the right direction for greater fairness and tolerance of non-citizens with criminal records in Australia, it still has shortcomings related to the primary consideration of family violence and Australia’s international law non-refoulement obligations.
On 23 January 2023, the Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs (the Hon Andrew Giles MP) signed Direction no. 99 – Visa refusal and cancellation under section 501 and revocation of a mandatory cancellation of a visa under section 501CA (‘Direction 99’). The new ministerial direction was made pursuant to s 499 of the Migration Act 1958 (Cth) (‘Migration Act’).
Direction 99 comes into effect on 3 March 2023. Given the significance of ministerial directions made under s 499 of the Act, this article seeks to provide an overview of Direction 99 and examine whether Direction 99 is a step in the right direction for greater fairness, justice and humane treatment of non-citizens in Australia.