Last updated 22 August 2016

Under pt 3 of the Judicial Review Act 1991 (Qld) (Judicial Review Act), the aggrieved person may apply to the court for an order of review in respect of:

  • a decision to which the Judicial Review Act applies (s 20)
  • conduct for the purpose of making a decision to which the Judicial Review Act applies (s 21)
  • failure to make such a decision (s 22).

The Judicial Review Act distinguishes between decisions and conduct engaged in for the purpose of making a decision. Both are defined in very broad terms. The Judicial Review Act applies to decisions of an administrative character made, proposed to be made or required to be made. Such decisions must have been either made under an enactment (s 4(a) Judicial Review Act) or made using executive power in relation to a scheme or program which is not created by statute, but which is provided for by public funds (s 4(b) Judicial Review Act).

Common forms of decision include:

  • making an order
  • giving a certificate
  • issuing a licence or permit
  • suspending, revoking or refusing any of those things.

Conduct engaged in for the purpose of making a decision includes such procedural matters as taking evidence or holding an inquiry or investigation and the manner in which these processes are conducted.

The Commonwealth Administrative Decisions (Judicial Review) Act 1977 (Cth) has no equivalent to the non-statutory scheme or program provision in Queensland (s 4(b)), so decisions in the Commonwealth jurisdiction can only be reviewed under that Act if they are made under an enactment.

Both state and Commonwealth Acts exclude some decisions from their scope. The changing nature of government has meant that the Judicial Review Act now excludes from review decisions made by a range of government owned corporations. It is also possible for parliament to protect specific decisions using a privative clause (see Privative clauses to protect government actions from review below).