Cultural heritage studies

A cultural heritage study is a comprehensive study of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander cultural heritage for the purpose of recording the findings of the study on the Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander Cultural Heritage Register.

The Land Court can hear objections against the chief executive’s decision to record or not to record the findings of a cultural heritage study.

Lodging an objection

You may object to the Land Court if you are:

  • the sponsor for the study
  • an endorsed party for the study
  • an owner or occupier of land in the study area
  • a local government in the study area.

Make an objection by filing a Form 1 - Originating application (PDF, 470.1 KB) in the Land Court registry either:

  • in person at Level 8, Brisbane Magistrates Court building, 363 George Street, Brisbane
  • by post to The Registrar, Land Court of Queensland, GPO Box 5266, Brisbane Qld 4001.

Your objection must identify the names and contact details of every person you believe is a party to the objection.

File your objection within 30 days of the chief executive giving notice of the decision.

After receiving the objection, the Land Court advises all other parties that it has received the objection and when any hearing may be held.

What happens next

The parties to the objection are offered mediation at no cost, conducted by a judicial registrar or member of the court. The person who conducts the mediation doesn’t preside over any future hearing of the matter and maintains full confidentiality.

If mediation is unsuccessful, the court must hold a hearing. All parties to the objection can be heard at the hearing and the court may help the parties negotiate changes to the cultural heritage study at any time before making a recommendation.

The outcome

After the hearing, the Land Court makes a recommendation to the Minister for Natural Resources and Mines.

If the objection relates to the recording of a study, the court may recommend that:

  • the recording be confirmed
  • the findings be removed
  • the findings be amended in particular ways.

If the objection relates to a refusal to record a study, the court may recommend that:

  • the refusal be confirmed
  • the findings be recorded
  • the findings be amended and then recorded.

In making a recommendation, the court must consider the same statutory criteria that the chief executive was required to consider and will take into account each party’s submissions. The court may also consider the nature and extent of consultation held in carrying out the study.

The minister then makes the final decision about recording, amending or not recording the cultural heritage study. The minister has regard for the Land Court’s recommendation, but isn’t bound by it.