Under the terms of reference the ALRC has two major issues to
"connection requirements", which
relate to the need for Indigenous people seeking recognition of
their native title rights and interests to be able to establish
that such rights and interests are possessed under traditional laws
and customs that they have continued to acknowledge and observe as
a group - and by which they have maintained a connection with the
claimed land and waters
any barriers to access to justice posed by the
"authorisation provisions", which set out the process
by which Indigenous groups give authority to certain of their
members to, on their behalf, make and progress native title claims
and deal with related matters; and
"joinder provisions", being the legal process
provided under the NTA for new parties to join native title
The ALRC acknowledges that any potential changes to native title
law will require very careful consideration and broad stakeholder
engagement. It therefore wants its review to be as wide-reaching as
possible and has already begun consultations with interested
parties within the Indigenous community and their representative
organisations, as well as those within the legal profession,
industry and the community generally.
The best way for people who would like a say to contribute will
be through the proposed submission process. We will provide an
update once submissions open.
For now, the ALRC plans to release, in early 2014, an Issues
Paper that will provide an overview of the issues surrounding the
Inquiry and ask questions that have arisen through the ALRC's
first stage of research and consultations.
A secondary round of public consultations will take place after
the release of the Issues Paper and then a Discussion Paper is
expected to be released in or around September 2014. This
Discussion Paper will, for the first time in the course of this
Inquiry, contain concrete draft proposals for reform. Members of
the public will have an opportunity to make submissions giving
their feedback on the draft reform proposals after the release of
the Discussion Paper.
We will provide further guidance about the scope of the Inquiry
upon the expected release of the Issues Paper early in the New
Clayton Utz communications are intended to provide
commentary and general information. They should not be relied upon
as legal advice. Formal legal advice should be sought in particular
transactions or on matters of interest arising from this bulletin.
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