Section 6: Reviews

This chapter gives an overview of a person’s right to challenge a decision made by a regulatory authority which has negatively impacted an individual’s rights, interests or legitimate expectations.

The Good Regulatory Practice chapter provides regulatory authorities with guidance about ensuring the decisions they make are ‘lawful’ and, therefore, better able to withstand challenges.

Following most administrative decisions in the public sector, if a person is affected by a decision they can challenge the decision, or the administrative process used to reach it, using one or more mechanisms for review. These mechanisms are generally referred to as ‘review rights’ and include:

  • a statutory right to have a decision reviewed on its merits (also known as ‘merits review’)
  • judicial review
  • a review of the administrative process by an Ombudsman.

The National Law provides for both internal review, conducted by the regulatory authority responsible for the initial decision, and external review, conducted by the relevant court or tribunal. A person may also be able to seek judicial review of a decision under state or territory law.