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The introduction of Migration Courts in Sweden - a shift of power in the asylum process

Erixon, Karin LU (2011) JURM01 20111
Department of Law
Abstract (Swedish)
2006 genomfördes en reform av den svenska asylprocessen. Det tidigare systemet hade utsatts för stark kritik, och särskilt överklagandeinstansen, Utlänningsnämnden, hade blivit en symbol för en godtycklig, och samtidigt restriktiv asylpolitik. I och med reformen ersattes Utlänningsnämnden av tre Migrationsdomstolar och en Migrationsöverdomstol. Det uttryckliga målet var att öka öppenheten och rättsäkerheten. Det fanns också ett behov att öka allmänhetens och den sökandes tilltro till processen.
Uppsatsen undersöker reformen, och fokuserar på varför beslutsfattandet i asylärendena fördes over från en administrativ myndighet till domstolarna, och vilka konsekvenser en sådan överföring för med sig. Ett begrepp som används inom doktrinen... (More)
2006 genomfördes en reform av den svenska asylprocessen. Det tidigare systemet hade utsatts för stark kritik, och särskilt överklagandeinstansen, Utlänningsnämnden, hade blivit en symbol för en godtycklig, och samtidigt restriktiv asylpolitik. I och med reformen ersattes Utlänningsnämnden av tre Migrationsdomstolar och en Migrationsöverdomstol. Det uttryckliga målet var att öka öppenheten och rättsäkerheten. Det fanns också ett behov att öka allmänhetens och den sökandes tilltro till processen.
Uppsatsen undersöker reformen, och fokuserar på varför beslutsfattandet i asylärendena fördes over från en administrativ myndighet till domstolarna, och vilka konsekvenser en sådan överföring för med sig. Ett begrepp som används inom doktrinen för att beskriva domstolars och andra rättsliga organs ökade makt är ’judikalisering’. Eftersom begreppet innefattar en rad intressanta frågor kring makt och ansvar använder sig författaren av det för att diskutera reformen av den svenska asylprocessen.
Uppsatsen är uppdelad i fyra delar, följda av en slutsats. I den första delen beskrivs det internationella rättsliga ramverket för asylprocessen. Den andra delen undersöker reformen och lagstiftningsprocessen som föregick beslutet att förändra systemet. Det visas att det fanns en stark politisk vilja att förändra systemet till en domstolsprövning, men att de rättsliga exporter som rådfrågades var skeptiska till reformen. I den tredje delen undersöks de politiska reaktionerna på resultatet av den nya asylprocessen, främst genom en genomgång av motioner som lämnats in sedan reformen. De visar att de flesta aktörer i allmänhet verkar vara nöjda med införandet av Migrationsdomstolar. Dock har en debatt rörande olika aspekter av asylpolitiken fortsatt. Den fjärde delen av uppsatsen ägnas åt begreppen maktdelning och judikalisering. C Neal Tates beskrivning av förutsättningar som underlättar judikalisering jämförs med reformen av den svenska asylprocessen.
I slutsatsen hävdas det att den svenska reformen är ett exempel på judikalisering. Det hävdas också att denna judikalisering åtminstone delvis kan ses som en frivillig delegering av makt för att slippa ansvaret över ett politiskt känsligt område. Författaren ser en risk att flytten av asylärendena till domstolarna kan ge Regeringen och Riksdagen en felaktig bild av att inte längre ha ansvaret för asylpolitiken. Dessutom är det troligt att kritiken mot beslut som rör asyl kommer att följa med asylärendena till domstolarna. På lång sikt riskerar Migrationsdomstolarna att få samma problem med trovärdigheten som Utlänningsnämnden en gång hade. (Less)
Abstract
In 2006 a reform of the Swedish asylum process took place. The former system had been the object of strong criticism, and especially the appellate body, the Aliens Appeals Board, had become a symbol of an arbitrary, and at the same time restrictive asylum policy. In the reform the Aliens Appeals Board was replaced with three Migration Courts and one Migration Court of Appeal. The outspoken aim was to increase the transparency and make the process to a higher degree governed by the rule of law. There was also a need to increase the public’s and the applicant’s trust in the process.
The thesis examines the reform, focusing on why the decision making in the asylum cases was transferred from an administrative body into the courts, and... (More)
In 2006 a reform of the Swedish asylum process took place. The former system had been the object of strong criticism, and especially the appellate body, the Aliens Appeals Board, had become a symbol of an arbitrary, and at the same time restrictive asylum policy. In the reform the Aliens Appeals Board was replaced with three Migration Courts and one Migration Court of Appeal. The outspoken aim was to increase the transparency and make the process to a higher degree governed by the rule of law. There was also a need to increase the public’s and the applicant’s trust in the process.
The thesis examines the reform, focusing on why the decision making in the asylum cases was transferred from an administrative body into the courts, and what consequences such a transfer brings with it. A concept used in the doctrine to describe the increasing power of courts and other judicial bodies is ‘judicialisation’. Since the concept contains a number of interesting questions regarding power and responsibility, the author uses it to discuss the reform of the Swedish asylum process.
The thesis is divided into four parts, followed by a conclusion. In the first part, the international legal framework of the asylum process is described. The second part examines the reform and the law-making process that preceded the decision to change the system. It is shown that there was a strong political will of changing the system into a court procedure, but that the legal experts who were asked of their opinion were sceptical to the reform. In the third part the political reactions to the results of the new asylum process are examined, mainly by a review of private members’ bills submitted since the reform. They show that most actors generally seem pleased with the introduction of Migration Courts. However, a debate on different aspects of the asylum policies has continued. The fourth part of the thesis is devoted to the concepts of power division and judicialisation. C Neal Tate’s description of conditions that facilitates judicialisation is compared to the reform of the asylum process in Sweden.
In the conclusion it is argued that the reform in Sweden is an example of juducialisation. It is also argued that this judicialisation at least partly can be seen as a wilful delegation of power in order to escape responsibility over a politically sensitive area. The author sees a risk that moving the asylum cases into the courts will leave the Government and the Parliament with the false notion that they do not any longer have the responsibility over the asylum policies. Also, it is likely that the critique of the decisions on asylum will follow the asylum cases into the courts. In the long run, the Migration Courts risk getting the same problems of credibility that the Aliens Appeals Board ones had. (Less)
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author
Erixon, Karin LU
supervisor
organization
course
JURM01 20111
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
public international law
language
English
id
1966784
date added to LUP
2011-06-09 10:35:19
date last changed
2011-06-09 10:35:19
@misc{1966784,
  abstract     = {In 2006 a reform of the Swedish asylum process took place. The former system had been the object of strong criticism, and especially the appellate body, the Aliens Appeals Board, had become a symbol of an arbitrary, and at the same time restrictive asylum policy. In the reform the Aliens Appeals Board was replaced with three Migration Courts and one Migration Court of Appeal. The outspoken aim was to increase the transparency and make the process to a higher degree governed by the rule of law. There was also a need to increase the public’s and the applicant’s trust in the process. 
   The thesis examines the reform, focusing on why the decision making in the asylum cases was transferred from an administrative body into the courts, and what consequences such a transfer brings with it. A concept used in the doctrine to describe the increasing power of courts and other judicial bodies is ‘judicialisation’. Since the concept contains a number of interesting questions regarding power and responsibility, the author uses it to discuss the reform of the Swedish asylum process.
   The thesis is divided into four parts, followed by a conclusion. In the first part, the international legal framework of the asylum process is described. The second part examines the reform and the law-making process that preceded the decision to change the system. It is shown that there was a strong political will of changing the system into a court procedure, but that the legal experts who were asked of their opinion were sceptical to the reform. In the third part the political reactions to the results of the new asylum process are examined, mainly by a review of private members’ bills submitted since the reform. They show that most actors generally seem pleased with the introduction of Migration Courts. However, a debate on different aspects of the asylum policies has continued. The fourth part of the thesis is devoted to the concepts of power division and judicialisation. C Neal Tate’s description of conditions that facilitates judicialisation is compared to the reform of the asylum process in Sweden.
   In the conclusion it is argued that the reform in Sweden is an example of juducialisation. It is also argued that this judicialisation at least partly can be seen as a wilful delegation of power in order to escape responsibility over a politically sensitive area. The author sees a risk that moving the asylum cases into the courts will leave the Government and the Parliament with the false notion that they do not any longer have the responsibility over the asylum policies. Also, it is likely that the critique of the decisions on asylum will follow the asylum cases into the courts. In the long run, the Migration Courts risk getting the same problems of credibility that the Aliens Appeals Board ones had.},
  author       = {Erixon, Karin},
  keyword      = {public international law},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {The introduction of Migration Courts in Sweden - a shift of power in the asylum process},
  year         = {2011},
}