The LAR includes a provision, according to which the caseworker, with the consent of the asylum seeker, can order a medical examination to establish evidentiary statements of past persecution or serious harm. If such consent is refused by the asylum seeker, this should not be an impediment to issuing the first instance decision. The law also envisages that the medical examination can be initiated by the asylum seeker, but in this case he or she should bear the medical expert’s cost.
However, such reports are only exceptionally commissioned by caseworkers of the SAR. In most of the cases where medical reports were provided – if not all – this was at the initiative of the asylum seeker or his or her legal representative. The costs of such medical reports are covered by legal aid, which is awarded in the majority of cases which concern vulnerable applicants. If no legal aid is awarded, the costs of the medical report are borne by the asylum seeker.
The law only requires the caseworker to order a medical examination in one particular case, which is when there are indications that the asylum seeker might be mentally ill. In this case, if the result of the medical examination report shows that the asylum seeker suffers from disease or mental illness, the caseworker approaches the decision-maker, the SAR's Chairperson, who refers the case to the court for appointment of a legal guardian to the asylum seeker which is required in order to be able to continue with the examination of the asylum application