High Court of Australia

Northern Land Council v Quall [2020] HCA 33

7 Oct 2020

Case Number: D21/2019

Before

KIEFEL CJ, GAGELER, KEANE, NETTLE, EDELMAN JJ

Catchwords

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples – Native title – Representative Aboriginal/Torres Strait Islander bodies – Indigenous land use agreements ("ILUAs") – Where s 203BE(1)(b) of Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) confers on representative body function of certifying applications for registration of ILUAs – Where s 203BE(5) prohibits representative body from certifying application for registration of ILUA unless satisfied that all reasonable efforts made to ensure all persons who hold or may hold native title have been identified and authorised making of agreement – Where s 27(1) of Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act 1976 (Cth) provides that a Land Council may do all things necessary or convenient to be done for or in connection with performance of its functions – Where Northern Land Council ("NLC") a representative body – Where CEO of NLC signed certificate purportedly as delegate of NLC certifying application for registration of ILUA and stating NLC satisfied that identification and authorisation requirements met – Whether certification function conferred by s 203BE(1)(b) capable of delegation by NLC to CEO – Whether CEO can perform certification function conferred by s 203BE(1)(b) as agent of NLC.

Words and phrases – "Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples", "agency", "agent", "authorised", "body corporate", "certification", "certification function", "delegability", "delegable", "delegate", "delegation", "identified", "indigenous land use agreement", "Land Council", "native title", "natural person", "necessary or convenient", "power of delegation", "representative Aboriginal/Torres Strait Islander body", "representative body".

Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act 1976 (Cth) – ss 27, 28.

Acts Interpretation Act 1901 (Cth) – ss 34A, 34AB.

Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) – ss 203BE, 203BK, 203FH.
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