F.A. (Somalia) v Administrative Court for International Protection
CY: The Administrative Court for International Protection rejected legal aid request considering that the appeal had no chances of success
F.A., a Somali national, applied for international protection based on alleged persecution against him by Al Shabaab but the application was rejected by the Asylum Service.
The applicant applied before the Administrative Court of International Protection in order to be granted legal aid and a lawyer appointed to help him file an appeal against the negative decision.
The Administrative Court stated that legal aid cannot be granted for remedies that have no chance and based its reasoning on case law where the Supreme Court decided that legislation on legal aid shall be interpreted and applied in the light of the Law on Refugees and legislation on foreigners and immigration. Thus, the Administrative Court has to examine the substance of the case, taking into account new allegations and previous statements made during the examination of the application and its legality on the basis of the administrative and legal aid law.
In the present case, the Administrative Court stated that the applicant’s allegations were thoroughly examined by the determining authority and he could not indicate concrete reasons of risk of persecution by Al Shabaab and provided contradictory information on his age and his family situation before the Asylum Service. According to national guidance, but also based on the EASO Judicial Analysis on ”Evidence and credibility assessment in the context of the Common European Asylum System” (2018) the Administrative Court concluded that the applicant did not provide coherent, consistent and persuasive statements on the facts thus irreparably affecting the credibility of his allegations and the substance of his application. The application for legal aid did not contain any information to contradict what has been already assessed by the determining authority. The Administrative Court rejected his request for legal aid without examining his financial resources and holding that an appeal lodged by the applicant would have no chance of success.
Assessment of Application; Credibility; EASO Professional Development Series; Effective remedy; Legal Aid; Second Instance determination;
Cyprus, Administrative Court for International Protection [Διοικητικό Δικαστήριο Διεθνούς Προστασίας], F.A. (Somalia) v Administrative Court for International Protection, Legal Aid no. 182/20, 16 October 2020. Link redirects to the English summary in the EASO Case Law Database.