The new Administrative Review Tribunal 

It’s official: the new Administrative Review Tribunal (ART) is going ahead after it passed the Australian Parliament on 28 May 2024. So what will the new ART look like?

According to the Attorney General’s website, the new ART aims to:

  • be fair and just
  • resolve applications in a timely manner, and with as little formality and expense as is consistent with reaching the correct or preferable decision
  • be accessible and responsive to the diverse needs of parties
  • improve the transparency and quality of government decision making
  • promote public trust and confidence in the ART

Structure of the Tribunal

The original proposed version of the ART removed the two-tier review system for social security matters. Instead, it opted for a single tier and a newly created ‘Guidance and Appeals Panel’ where specific issues or material errors could be referred. However, unlike applying to the General Division of the current Administrative Appeals Tribunal, there was to be no automatic right to have a matter referred to the Guidance and Appeals Panel.  

Following advocacy led by Economic Justice Australia and National Legal Aid, which SSRV contributed to, the new ART design will now retain the two-tier review system for social security matters. 

SSRV considers the continuation of the two-tier review system as critical for access to justice by allowing more informal and efficient resolution of many matters, while retaining a right to further review for those who need it.

Other key aspects of the new ART include a greater merit-based focus in the appointment of members, as well as changes that promote accessibility, fairness and transparency to regain the confidence and trust of the Australian public.

There is still no timeline yet for when the development and implementation will be completed, and until that happens the Administrative Appeals Tribunal continues to operate in it’s current form.

To read more about the changes to expect with the new ART see Overview of draft Administrative Review Tribunal legislation | Attorney-General’s Department (

If you or someone you are supporting needs assistance with a Centrelink issue, call our Legal Assistance Line on 03 9481 0355 or Worker Helpline on 03 9481 0655.

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