Native Title in Australia

The High Court Mabo case in 1992 ruled in favour of a claim to Murray Island by the Meriam people. For the first time, Australian courts accepted that traditional law and custom could be a basis for claiming land ownership by Indigenous people. The Native Title Act 1993 (NTA) established the procedure for making native title claims.  

  • What is Native Title?

    Native title recognises the traditional rights and interests to land and waters of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Under the Native Title Act 1993 (NTA), native title claimants can make an application to the Federal Court to have their native title recognised by Australian law.

  • What are NTRBs and NTSPs?

    Native Title Representative Bodies and Native Title Service Providers assist Indigenous people with all aspects of their native title claims. Both NTRBs and NTSPs have similar roles. For this reason they are commonly collectively referred to as NTRBs, as is the case for this website

  • What are PBCs?

    A prescribed body corporate for the purposes of native title is a corporation required to be nominated by a group of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander people to hold and manage (as trustee) or manage (as agent) their native title rights and interests when that group has succeeded in having their native title recognised in a Federal Court determination.