In the face of a changing economy and legal environment, our native title team is able to support clients in their need for commercially strategic advice on native title and cultural heritage law requirements. Our team’s experience includes advising on the nature, establishment, maintenance, existence and extinguishment of native title and how relevant legislation operates across Federal, State and Territory jurisdictions.
Our unique understanding and practical knowledge of native title and cultural heritage law, combined with the firm’s full service offering, afford us the ability to provide our clients with expert advice on native title and Indigenous cultural heritage issues, with a focus on maximising value for our clients.
Our team has significant expertise in providing legal and related policy advice on native title and cultural heritage issues and the interpretation and operation of the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) (NTA). In particular our team’s experience includes the provision of legal and policy advice to native title representative bodies, native title service providers, registered native title bodies corporate, native title holders, native title claimants and Commonwealth and State government departments, agencies and statutory bodies on native title and cultural heritage issues.
We also advise a number of the firm’s corporate clients in relation to the existence, negotiation and extinguishment of native title, future act processes under the NTA, and cultural heritage issues under Commonwealth, State and Territory laws. Our team works closely with our Property and Corporate and Commercial teams to provide advice in relation to land holding, leasing, structuring and taxation law implications.
We have had extensive involvement in the preparation and conduct of native title claimant applications under the NTA, including the conduct of mediation meetings and conferences and the negotiation of consent determinations of native title with Commonwealth, State and Territory Governments and other respondent parties, together with the management and coordination of historical, archival, anthropological and archaeological research. We have acted for successful appellants and supporting interveners in a number of prominent High Court appeals – North Ganalanja Aboriginal Corporation -v- Queensland (1996) (the Waanyi Case), Wik Peoples -v- Queensland (1996) (the Pastoral Lease Case) and Yanner -v- Eaton (1999).
Our firm has been involved in numerous right to negotiate processes and in the negotiation of agreements and Indigenous land use agreements (ILUAs) under the NTA and cultural heritage management plans (CHMPs) and agreements concerning mining and exploration projects, gas exploration and production projects, infrastructure projects, commercial projects, local government issues, other future acts and pastoral lease use and access agreements, often where there were multiple and overlapping claimant applications and complex issues as to the management and protection of Indigenous cultural heritage. We have assisted and advised proponents on investigations and prosecutions arising from alleged breaches of the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act 2003 (Qld) (ACHA).
HWL Ebsworth Lawyers is recognised as a market leader in native title law by Chambers Legal, Doyle’s Guide, Best Lawyers and Who’s Who Legal.