Cultural Heritage Applications

The Court can hear some cases about activities that affect the land and cultural heritage of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and groups.

The Court commenced its Reconciliation Action Plan in May 2022. To view the Land Court RAP, click here.

The Court is preparing information about this jurisdiction, in the meantime, the diagram below is a brief overview of the type of cases you can bring to the Court and the type of orders the Court can make.

The Court can resolve some issues about Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander land, resources and cultural heritage:

  • The Court can make orders about activities that may harm cultural heritage (Land Court Act 2000 s 32H).
  • The Court can hear some objections and decide disputes about agreements made under the Commonwealth Native Title Act (Land Court Act 2000 ss 32E, 32F, 32G).
  • The Court can mediate disputes, and make recommendations about, some cultural heritage management plans (Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act 2003 ss 106, 112, 113 or Torres Strait Islander Cultural Heritage Act 2003 ss 106, 112, 113).
  • The Court can review some decisions about cultural heritage studies (Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act 2003 s 76 and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Heritage Act 2003 s 76).
  • The Court can review administrative decisions about leases over former Aboriginal or Torres Strait Island trust land (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Land Holding Act 2013 ss 23, 25, 33, 38).
  • The Court can decide what compensation must be paid to the owner, holder or trustee of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander land that is taken, or for which there is a reservation of or permit granted, to use forestry products or quarry materials. (Aboriginal Land Act 1991 ss 55, 82; Torres Strait Islander Land Act 1991 s 50; Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities (Justice, Land and Other Matters) Act 1984 s 62).
  • In limited circumstances, the Court hears objections about certain acts that affect native title (State Development and Public Works Organisation Act ss 125, 127).

The Court is committed to assisting parties to reach agreement without a formal court hearing.

For more information see Resolving cases by Agreement.

How do I get procedural assistance?

Contact the Land Court to discuss your options. Attend an interview at the Land Court Registry in person, by phone or via video conference.

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