In re: AD (Tuvalu) (Immigration and Protection Tribunal New Zealand, 2014)
Jurisdiction: New Zealand
Side A: AD Tuvalu (Individual)
Side B: Department of Immigration and Protection (Government)
Seeking resident visa
A family from Tuvalu appealed after they were denied New Zealand resident visas. The family argued, inter alia, that they would be at risk of suffering the adverse impacts of climate change if they were deported to Tuvalu. Pursuant to the Immigration Act 2009, the New Zealand Immigration and Protection Tribunal found that the family had established "exceptional circumstances of a humanitarian nature, which would make it unjust or unduly harsh for the appellants to be removed from New Zealand." However, while the Tribunal acknowledged that climate change impacts may affect enjoyment of human rights, it explicitly declined to reach the question of whether climate change provided a basis for granting resident visas in this case. Instead, the Tribunal based its finding of "exceptional circumstances" on other factors, including the presence of the husband's extended family in New Zealand, the family's integration into the New Zealand community, and the best interests of the children.