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The Full Federal Court has recently declared in Hossain v MIAC & Mo v MIAC that decisions to cancel student visas under section 137J Migration Act 1958 (the Act) between 1 July 2007 and 16 December 2009 were invalid.

Student visas go through an automatic cancellation process when their education provider informs the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) of a breach of student visa condition. The most common breaches that are reported are a student’s failure to meet course requirements or achieve satisfactory attendance in classes.

Students who have been reported as breaching a student visa condition would previously be served a Notice of Intention to Consider Cancellation under section 20 of the Act and the student visa would be automatically cancelled unless DIAC accepts that there were exceptional or compelling circumstances for the breach.

The Federal Court found that the section 20 notices issued between 1 July 2007 and 16 December 2009 did not prescribed which visa condition the students had breached hence rendering the notice and the subsequent automatic cancellation to be invalid. Accordingly, all cancellations issued during this period will be reversed.

Students who are affected under this decision will not be contacted by DIAC nor will their student visas automatically be reversed. For more information, please contact our specialist Migration department.