What happens on the day of your hearing

This guide explains what usually happens on the day of your hearing. The Tribunal sends you the time and date in the ‘Notice of Hearing’.

The Tribunal building in London
The Tribunal building in London

What happens depends on whether you have:

See Section 4 ofGuide to writing the appeal form for how to ask for a paper or oral hearing.

What happens also depends on whether you have a representative – an ASAP advocate (or someone else) to present your case. In Scotland, your lawyer might be able to apply for legal aid to help with your appeal. See How to make a referral for how to ask ASAP to represent your appeal.


Paper Hearing

You do not take part in a paper hearing. You cannot answer any questions the Judge may have. No one from the Home Office or ASAP takes part either.

Why is it called a paper hearing? Because the Judge sits alone to read documents sent by you and the Home Office. These include:

If ASAP represents your appeal, your ASAP advocate sends the Judge a document before the day of your appeal. The document will explain your situation and include legal points to help your case. Your ASAP advocate works with you on this.

The Decision: There are 3 types of decision: (i) allowed, (ii) remitted or (iii) dismissed. See 'Judge's Decision' for what each of these words mean.

When you get the Decision: If you have an ASAP advocate, they may send you the Judge’s decision the same day your appeal is decided. But in all cases, you should get the Judge’s decision by post the next day (excluding Saturday and Sunday).

Next steps: See ‘Next steps’ for what to do, depending what the Judge decides in your case.


Oral hearing

You take part in an oral hearing. So will your representative, if you have one. The Home Office may have a representative too. There will be a Tribunal interpreter, if you asked for one.

Usually an oral hearing will be face-to-face at the Tribunal in London. It can also be:

How does an oral hearing take place? An oral hearing follows the same order, whether by phone, video or face-to-face. See 'What usually happens at an oral hearing' to find out more.

Important information about different types of oral hearing: see 'phone hearing', 'video hearing' and 'face-to-face hearing' pages, depending what type of oral hearing you have.

Next steps: See ‘Next steps’ for what to do, depending what the Judge decides in your case.

Next steps

For all appeals: you must understand the Judge’s Statement of Reasons (the written decision you get 3 days after the hearing). It has important information. If reading English is difficult for you, ask the Judge if the Tribunal can send you the Statement of Reasons translated in your language. See below what to do if your appeal was allowed, dismissed or remitted.

If you were represented by ASAP: your ASAP advocate gives or sends you an advice letter. This will explain what happened at the hearing. It will say what you need to do next.

If an advice agency is helping you: tell them what happened at your appeal. If you have an ASAP advice letter, show it to them.

If no one is helping you: look for an advice agency near to you. Show them the Statement of Reasons. They can help you understand the Judge's decision and suggest what to do now.

Next steps if your appeal is ‘allowed’

If you are still living in Home Office housing: Go back to your Home Office housing. If someone asks if you are allowed to stay there, show them the Decision Notice from the Judge.

If you have left, or never had, Home Office housing:
If you have nowhere to sleep, ask the Home Office for emergency/temporary housing. You usually must go to the emergency housing on the same day as your appeal. This may mean you need to take all your clothes/personal items to your appeal.

If you have somewhere to stay, wait there until the Home Office gives you asylum support housing. This usually takes at least 2-3 weeks and can be longer.
Your asylum support housing may be in a different town or city to where you are living. The Home Office does not usually agree to give asylum support housing in a particular area. But if you need to stay in the same area, speak to an advice agency near you. They may help you ask the Home Office for housing in the same area.

Next steps if your appeal is ‘dismissed’

I disagree with the Judge’s decision. Can I appeal?

No. You cannot make an appeal against the Judge’s decision.

The only way to challenge the Judge’s decision is by Judicial Review. This means asking the High Court to say if the Judge got the law wrong. You need a lawyer to help you with this. If you are represented by ASAP, your ASAP advocate will say if you can ask for Judicial Review. You can also ask an advice agency to help you contact a lawyer.

Most people who get their appeal dismissed cannot challenge the decision by Judicial Review. Instead,  they can apply for asylum support again, with new evidence. 

When can I apply for asylum support again? To apply again, you must show your situation is different since the Judge made their decision. Look at the Statement of Reasons and speak to an advice agency to find out what this means in your case.  

Next steps if your appeal is ‘remitted’

If you are already getting asylum support: your housing and money payments will continue until the Home Office makes a new decision.

If you are not getting asylum support: you need to wait until the Home Office makes a new decision. Speak to an advice agency near where you live.


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