Country, Culture, People, Future

Feedback, Complaints & Internal Review

YMAC feedback, complaint and review process: guide

YMAC strives to act professionally and fairly at all times. We understand that, from time to time, our members, stakeholders or other interested members of the public may not be happy with a decision we make, or with the performance of the organisation or our staff.

Following your dealings with YMAC you may wish to provide feedback (including positive feedback), make a suggestion, submit an official complaint, initiate a dispute resolution process in accordance with the YMAC Rule Book, or seek an Internal Review*. (Note: An External Review is available after the Internal Review process is exhausted – see 3 below).

If you do not know where to start, please read below for information on how to start the process that most suits your needs.


Feedback and complaints are generally categorised as follows:

  1. A complaint about an individual staff member is dealt with by that officer’s line manager, according to YMAC policies and procedures in relation to discipline and the applicable employment laws.
  2. Disputes between YMAC members.
  3. Specific actions contemplated by the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) (NTA) that affect Prescribed Bodies Corporate (PBCs), native title holders and other persons who may hold native title.

NOTE: If you wish to request an Internal Review of a YMAC decision under specific actions under the NTA (e.g. a decision regarding an Application for Assistance), please see information under 2, below.


1. General feedback and complaints

YMAC welcomes feedback – including positive feedback – about your interactions with YMAC or the work we do.

Taking action

Talk to us – our staff are willing to listen

Firstly, speak to a YMAC staff member to see if the problem can be resolved quickly and easily. Ask for guidance on how best to deal with your problem. You can ask for reasons or an explanation about the issue you would like addressed.

If you are unsure who is best placed to speak with you, call YMAC reception and you will be advised as to who is the most appropriate YMAC staff member to assist you – or we will find out and let you know if we are unsure. Call 1800 270 709.

Write to us

If your concern cannot be resolved by our staff informally, then please put your concern or complaint in writing so it can be formally addressed.

You can do this by completing the YMAC Compliments, Feedback and Complaints Form, available on the YMAC website, or at each YMAC office reception.

Completed forms can be sent to the YMAC Chief Executive Officer:

Having your feedback in writing is important so there is a formal record for your reference and for ours.

YMAC will confirm receipt of your written complaint within 10 BUSINESS DAYS, will commence investigation and then respond to your complaint within 28 DAYS receipt with an outcome or request for further information.


2. The Internal Review process specific to YMAC’s Native Title Representative Body (NTRB) functions

Under section 203BI of the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) (NTA), YMAC has an Internal Review function.

Please refer to this Internal Review – Process Chart for an overview of the process.

People who are affected by a decision or action taken by YMAC in relation to its NTA functions – and are not satisfied with that decision or action – can request an Internal Review.

The YMAC Board of Directors must give notice of its decisions to those people who have asked YMAC to make a decision in relation to its functions and powers, where their decisions affect those people.

YMAC will notify you of the decision of the Board within FIVE BUSINESS DAYS of the Board meeting. If you are dissatisfied with the decision, you may decide to submit a request in writing (email or letter) to the YMAC Secretary requesting a Statement of Reasons. You must do this within 28 DAYS of being advised of the decision.

The request for a Statement of Reasons must be sent to YMAC Secretary. Requests can be:

The Secretary will respond to your request within 10 WORKING DAYS.

If, following the response from the Secretary, you are still dissatisfied, you may then elect to initiate an Internal Review by the YMAC Board of Directors.

To initiate an Internal Review, you have 28 DAYS from being provided with the response to your initial request for a Statement of Reasons from the YMAC Secretary.

The Application for Internal Review Form and the Internal Review – Process Chart provide further information on this process.

You must complete the Application for Internal Review Form, clearly stating the reasons for your request for review and addressing the grounds for review.

The request for a Statement of Reasons must be sent to YMAC Secretary. Requests can be:

Following receipt of a fully complete Application for Internal Review form, the Secretary will, within 28 DAYS of receipt:

  1. Provide you with acknowledgment of the receipt of the application.
  2. Make arrangements for the review of the decision.
    • within the later of 90 DAYS (following receipt of a fully completed Application for Internal Review form)
    • the next Board meeting (following receipt of a fully completed Application for Internal Review form) by the Board of Directors
    • in cases of emergency or exceptional circumstances (e.g. where it is not possible to arrange for a meeting of the Board), by the two YMAC Co-Chairpersons.
  3. Advise you of the date of the review.

View Board meeting dates for the year

On completion of the Internal Review, you will be provided with a statement outlining the outcome and the reasons for each decision. The statement will address all points raised in your application.

The purpose in providing a statement of reasons is to enable you by the decision to be able to say: “Even though I may not agree with it, I now understand why the decision went against me. I am now in a position to decide whether that decision has involved an unwarranted finding of fact or an error of law, which is worth challenging”.


3. External Review (Judicial Review) specific to YMAC’s Native Title Representative Body (NTRB) functions

If you are not satisfied with an Internal Review decision of the YMAC Board of Directors, you may have rights to have the whole process reviewed under


The External Review process is a process directly between yourself and the relevant agency. The process is reviewed externally under those Acts.

(i) Section 203FB of NTA through the National Indigenous Australians Agency  

The NTA makes provisions for a particular person at the National Indigenous Australians Agency (NIAA) to review a decision of a Native Title Representative Body (NTRB).

The rules and legislation can be found in the NTA Part 11, Division 7, 203FBA External Review.

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: 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.

Commonwealth services available to assist you to make a complaint:

(ii)   Administrative Decisions (Judicial Review) Act 1977 (Cth)

As a different way to review an NTRB’s decisions, the Administrative Decisions (Judicial Review) Act 1977 (Cth) provides a process that may apply.

This is a complex area of law with relatively short time frames that apply. It is important to consider obtaining independent legal advice if you want to consider this option.

The grounds for review of a decision under the ADJR Act include:

Some external resources to consider for understanding the issue include:


4. Dispute resolution specific to YMAC members

YMAC’s Rule Book sets out the rules for disputes between members and between applicants for membership under Section 18.

The Rule Book is available to YMAC members from YMAC offices, on request by phone, or by emailing us.

Members must try to resolve a dispute on an informal basis. Where a dispute is not resolved within 10 business days, a member may serve a dispute notice (under the provisions of the YMAC Rule Book) to the relevant parties and to the corporation.

A dispute notice must be in writing and must say what the dispute is about.

A copy of the notice must be given to the corporation through the YMAC secretary and addressed to the Board of Directors.

Notices can be sent by post or email to the YMAC Secretary:

For further information, members can contact YMAC and request a copy of the Rule Book.

Country is our mother, the provider and keeper of cultural belongings. Country and Culture go together. You can’t have one without the other.

Yamatji Marlpa Aboriginal Corporation respectfully acknowledges the Traditional Owners and custodians throughout Western Australia, and on whose Country we work. We acknowledge and respect their deep connection to their lands and waterways.

We honour and pay respect to Elders, and to their ancestors who survived and cared for Country.

Our offices are located on Whadjuk Country, Southern Yamatji Country, Yinggarda Country, Kariyarra Country, and Yawuru Country. We recognise the continuing culture, traditions, stories and living cultures on these lands and commit to building a brighter future together.

Disclaimer: Caution: Please be advised that this website may contain images, voices and names of deceased people.

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