Office of the Registrar. Aboriginal Land Rights Act 1983 (NSW) Logo

Office of the Registrar.
Aboriginal Land Rights Act 1983 (NSW)

Office of the Registrar

An Office of the Registrar has existed since the beginning of the Aboriginal Land Rights Act in NSW in 1983.

The functions of the Registrar are set out in section 165 of the Act. These functions include registering land claims and maintaining the Register of Aboriginal Land Claims, maintaining the Register of Aboriginal Owners, approving the rules of Aboriginal Land Councils, issuing compliance directions, investigating complaints and mediating disputes.

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Office of the Registrar

Aboriginal Land Rights Act 1983 (NSW)

The role of Registrar of the Aboriginal Land Right Act 1983 (ORALRA) includes:

  1. Maintaining the Registers of Aboriginal Land Claims, Aboriginal Land Agreements and Aboriginal Owners;
  2. Maintaining a consolidated roll of all members of Local Aboriginal Land Councils;
  3. Mediation, conciliation or arbitration of disputes relating to the ALRA;
  4. Investigating complaints and providing support to Local Aboriginal Land Councils to ensure compliance with the ALRA; and
  5. Providing advice to the Minister for Aboriginal Affairs in relation to Aboriginal Land Rights.

The team at the Office of the Registrar of the Aboriginal Land Rights Act has been working to improve access to our services, including updating the process for making Aboriginal Land Claims.

The Office of the Registrar's Strategic Plan 2021—24 has been distributed throughout the Aboriginal land council network and relevant Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal organisations; it is available here for your reference. If you would like to comment on the Plan, please contact us through the email address given below.

We look forward to contiuning to work with all Local Aboriginal Land Councils across NSW in the future. We can be contacted on by phone on 02 8633 1266, or by email to

Forms & Resources

Download Membership, Land Claims, Voting, Register of Aboriginal Owners, Codes of Conduct and Eligibility Forms & Resources.

You will need Adobe Reader to read and access the information contained in PDF files.

Draft Model Code of Conduct for Land Councils

Office of the Registrar


If you have a complaint about the conduct of staff, consultants and/or Board members of a NSW Local Aboriginal Land Council, or staff and/or councillors of the NSW Aboriginal Land Council (NSWALC), we're keen to hear from you.

Our legislation limits what we can investigate. The Office of the Registrar, ALRA (ORALRA) can handle complaints about matters directly related to provisions of the Aboriginal Land Rights Act 1983 and Aboriginal Land Rights Regulations 2014.

We can investigate the conduct of:

  • Staff, consultants & Board members of NSW Local Aboriginal Land Councils
  • Staff & Councillors of the NSW Aboriginal Land Council

We cannot investigate the conduct of:

  • The Governor, Parliament, Ministers & Members of Parliament
  • Local Government
  • Courts or “court like” bodies such as the NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) or other Tribunals
  • Legal Advisors acting for public authorities
  • Royal Commissions
  • Individual employment related issues.

We also cannot handle complaints about:

  • Electricity and Gas retailers
  • Telephone and Internet companies
  • Banks and Finance companies
  • Commonwealth Government agencies
  • Insurance companies
  • Housing providers that are not NSW Local Aboriginal Land Councils
  • Private companies or individuals that are not within our legislation.

The ORALRA acts impartially and independently of both the Land Councils and the complainant. We do not act as advocates and do not provide legal advice.

We have developed guidelines and other resources to assist our stakeholders and our staff are available to provide advice and guidance on how policies, procedures and complaint handling processes can be improved.

We also have an important role in relation to dealing with public interest disclosures and can provide support and training for staff and Board on complaint handling and governance.

If you wish to register a complaint with us, we can be contacted on by phone on 02 8633 1266, or by email at

Office of the Registrar

Organisational Structure

ORALRA Staff Structure