Ever since the Native Title Act 1993 commenced, Australian law has provided explicit statutory rights to compensation for acts affecting native title. However, it was not until late 2016 that a court was asked to make a determination of compensation, and to discuss the principles that should be applied in doing so. My thesis concerns the challenge that compensating native title presents, offers a critique of the approach taken by the courts so far, and outlines a new path forward. Ultimately, I argue that the key challenge is striking the right balance between integrating native title compensation into an existing framework of principles (similitude) and the creation of a new approach that recognises the unique character of native title (sui generis).


TC Beirne School of Law
Level 3, Forgan Smith Building
The University of Queensland, St Lucia
Board Room (W353)