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Section 4.9. Access to information

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Section 4.9. Access to information

Persons seeking international protection need information on their situation in order to be able to fully communicate their protection needs and personal circumstances and, in turn, have them comprehensively and fairly assessed. 

To ensure effective access to the asylum procedure, the recast APD and the recast RCD oblige Member States to ensure that applicants have access to free legal and procedural information, for example on where and how applications for international protection may be lodged or what their rights and obligations are in reception. Obligations also include the provision of information to potential applicants who are in detention facilities and at border crossing points. 

Effective access to information is a primary constituent of procedural fairness. Applicants have the right to be informed so that: 

  • they understand the different stages of the process;
  • they know their rights and obligations in each of these stages, and the possible consequences of not complying or cooperating;
  • the timeframe for each stage of the procedure is clearly communicated; and
  • they are aware of the means available to them to exercise their rights and fulfil their duties. 

For applicants with pending cases, it is crucial to receive information, because a lack of clarity can be a contributing factor to absconding and secondary movements.

In 2022, EU+ countries continued to enhance the provision of information to asylum applicants through digital innovations and improvements, such as new platforms and websites. In addition to national authorities, civil society organisations continued to play an equally integral role in facilitating access to information in 2022. Both national authorities and civil society organisations increasingly made efforts to ensure applicants and beneficiaries of international protection had access to information in a language that they understand. As such, content was translated into several languages, with a special focus on having information available in Ukrainian and Russian.

Specific groups of applicants may require tailored information for their situation and circumstances. This continued to be the case for evacuees from Afghanistan and displaced persons from Ukraine, which created a new information landscape. New information was also developed for Russian nationals seeking protection.

4.9.1. Information on the asylum procedure


4.9.2. Information for specific nationalities


4.9.3. Information on everyday life, rights and obligations