AboutCompliments, Complaints and Internal Review

Compliments, Complaints and Internal Review

As part of our commitment to continually improving service to clients, Central Desert has established a process for addressing client feedback.

Central Desert seeks to respond to compliments and complaints from clients about operations, services, or staff promptly and with a view to continuously improving our service quality.





If you have feedback to provide, please forward it in writing to:

Chief Executive Officer

Central Desert Native Title Services

76 Wittenoom Street

East Perth WA 6004

Email: reception@centraldesert.org.au


Complaints may fall into one of two categories –

  • Conduct of Central Desert staff, which is dealt with by the person’s manager according to the policies and procedures in relation to discipline and the applicable employment laws.
  • The exercise of Central Desert’s statutory functions under section 203BI of the Native Title Act 1993(NTA) which affect native title claimants, native title holders, prescribed bodies corporate, and other stakeholders in the native title process.

This is dealt with under the Internal Review process.

Internal Review

If you are affected by a decision or action taken by Central Desert in relation to its functions under the NTA and you are not satisfied with that decision or action, you can request an internal review of the matter.

Grounds of Review:

The grounds of review are as follows:

  • That a breach of the rules of natural justice occurred in connection with the making of the decision (for example, that the applicant was denied the opportunity to be heard in relation to the original decision);
  • That procedures that were required by law to be observed in connection with the making of the decision were not observed;
  • That the person who purported to make a decision did not have jurisdiction to make the decision, or was not allowed to make the decision within the organisational structure of the Central Desert;
  • That the decision was not authorised by the NTA;
  • That the making of the decision was an improper exercise of the power conferred by the NTA;
  • That the decision involved an area of law, whether or not that area appears in the written reasons for the decision;
  • That the decision was induced or affected by fraud;
  • That there was no evidence or other material to justify the making of the decision; or
  • That the decision was otherwise contrary to law.

Relevant matters will include whether:

  • An irrelevant consideration was taken into account in the exercise of a power;
  • The decision maker failed to take into account a relevant consideration in exercising a power;
  • The decision maker exercised a power for a purpose other than a purpose for which the power is conferred;
  • A power was exercised in bad faith;
  • A personal discretionary power was exercised at the direction, request or the behest of another person;
  • An exercise of a discretionary power occurred in accordance with a rule or policy without regard to the merits of a particular case;
  • An exercise of a power was so unreasonable that no reasonable person could have so exercised the power;
  • An exercise of a power occurred in such a way that the result of the exercise of the power is uncertain; or
  • There was any other exercise of a power that constitutes abuse of the power.

Key Steps of the Internal Review Process

If you (the “Applicant”) are not happy with the reasons for a decision and wish to initiate an Internal Review-

  • Within 28 days of receiving the Statement of Reasons and, following consideration of the reasons upon which a decision was made, apply to the CEO in writing for an internal review of the decision, notifying reasons seeking the internal review.
  • Within 14 days of receiving further request for internal review, the CEO will notify applicant in writing with full acknowledgement of the receipt of the application; And
  • Make arrangements for the review of the decision within three months of receipt of request.
  • A Reviewer will be assigned to the case. They may request additional information and or documents from the Applicant.
  • The Reviewer will advise the CEO of the outcome and reasons for the decision on the case.
  • Within 3 months of receipt of the review request, the CEO will provide the Applicant with a written Statement of Reasons.

This Statement will include advice that the Applicant has the right to have an External Review of the decision.

External Review

You can request an External Review-

  • through the National Indigenous Australians Agency (NIAA)


  • the Administrative Decisions (Judicial Review) Act, 1977 (Cth) [ADJR Act].

To contact NIAA-

You can leave feedback or make a complaint on the form on this NIAA page or phone 1800 079 098 or (02) 6152 3050 or email: complaints@niaa.gov.au or send a letter to:

National Indigenous Australians Agency
PO Box 2191
Canberra ACT 2600

The NIAA page also contains advice on what to think about and how to submit. Complaints may be made verbally or in writing.

Judicial Review

The Administrative Decisions (Judicial Review) Act 1977 (Cth) provides grounds for review of a decision. This includes:

  • a breach of natural justice;
  • an error of law; or
  • a failure to take into account a relevant consideration.

It is important to consider obtaining independent legal advice if you want to consider this option.

Central Desert’s full process of Compliments, Complaints and Reviews is outlined here