Admissibility procedure

Malta

Country Report: Admissibility procedure Last updated: 19/05/21

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General (scope, criteria, time limits)

The new International Protection Act provides for a new definition of “inadmissible applications”. The following grounds allow for deeming an asylum application inadmissible:[1]

  • Another Member State has already granted the applicant international protection;
  • The applicant comes from a First Country of Asylum;
  • The applicant comes from a Safe Third Country;
  • The applicant has lodged a Subsequent Application presenting no new elements;
  • A dependant of the applicant has lodged a separate application after consenting to have his or her case made part of an application made on his or her behalf; and
  • The applicant has been recognised in a third country and can avail him or herself of that protection or otherwise enjoys sufficient protection from refoulement, and can be readmitted to that country.

It is important to note that coming from a safe country of origin is no longer a ground for the application to be deemed inadmissible. The definition of inadmissible in national legislation is now in line with the Asylum Procedure Directive.

According to the International Protection Act, inadmissibility is a ground for an application to be processed under the Accelerated Procedure.

As the law mentions the inadmissibility of an application for recognition of refugee status, only the International Protection Agency can decide upon the admissibility of the application.[2] According to NGOs’ experience, applications submitted by individuals having lodged a subsequent application presenting no new documents or already benefiting from the protection of another MS are considered inadmissible and usually processed under the accelerated procedure.

NGOs started to express concerns over the application of inadmissibility procedures in 2018 since this procedure does not provide for an effective remedy but only a three-day review with the International Protection Appeals Tribunal which does not allow the applicant to provide written submissions or to be heard. The decisions are found to be a mere confirmation of the first administrative decision without any examinations of points of facts or law (see below).

In 2020, 196 applications were considered inadmissible (172 on the basis that applicants had already a protection in another Member State and 22 in the context of subsequent applications where no new elements were provided.[3] By way of comparison, 388 applications were deemed inadmissible in 2019.

[1]           Article 24 International Protection Act.

[2]           Court of Appeal, Paul Washimba v Bordtal-Appellidwarir-Rifugjati, 28 September 2012.

[3]           Information provided by the IPA, April 2021

Table of contents

  • Statistics
  • Overview of the legal framework
  • Overview of the main changes since the previous report update
  • Asylum Procedure
  • Reception Conditions
  • Detention of Asylum Seekers
  • Content of International Protection
  • ANNEX I – Transposition of the CEAS in national legislation