Who is responsible for an unaccompanied minor?

An unaccompanied minor might be held in an alternative place of detention, in community detention or granted a bridging visa while their application for a visa is being processed. We are responsible for the care and welfare of unaccompanied minors in detention, including providing a safe environment for them to live in.

​While their visa application is being processed, the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection might agree to let unaccompanied minors live with relatives if they have any in Australia. Those relatives are responsible for the care and welfare of the unaccompanied minors in their care.

Many other unaccompanied minors do not have any relatives in Australia. These minors may be cared for in the community by out-of-home care providers. The minister might be the legal guardian for those unaccompanied minors and is responsible for their care and welfare.