Review by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT)

If you disagree with an ACNC objection decision you can apply to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) to have it reviewed. You can also ask the AAT to review a decision not to allow late lodgement of applications for internal review. You cannot ask the AAT to review any other ACNC decisions.

Please contact us if you are unhappy with a decision we have made. We will try to resolve the problem with you. If you still disagree with our decision, you have the right to review the decision you are unhappy with.

Who can apply to the AAT for review of an ACNC objection decision?

A responsible person or charity can apply to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) to have the objection decision reviewed. If another person's interests are affected by the ACNC objection decision they can apply in writing to be joined as a party to the AAT review. The AAT can decide whether or not to let them join the proceedings.

When can I apply to the AAT?

You can apply to the AAT if:

  • we made an objection decision and you are unhappy with our decision
  • you have missed the deadline to apply for an internal review of an ACNC decision and we did not agree to extend the time limit for your objection.

How long do I have to apply to the AAT?

You must apply to the AAT within 60 days of us giving you our objection decision.

There is no time limit for when you need to apply to the AAT to review our decision not to allow late lodgement of your internal review. The AAT will decide whether you have applied in a reasonable time. You should contact the AAT if you are unsure about the timeframe they will accept in these circumstances.

How do I apply to the AAT?

You can apply to the AAT on an application for review of a decision form.

Your application must explain all the reasons that you are applying to the AAT to review the ACNC objection decision, and what decision (if any) you believe the ACNC should have made instead. The AAT can limit their review of your case to the reasons you put into your original Notice of Objection form you sent to the ACNC. If you apply to the AAT, you will have to prove to the AAT that the ACNC should have made a different decision.

The AAT can review the decision of another government department or agency at the same time as it reviews an ACNC objection decision if the decisions are related (for example, a related decision of the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) about tax concessions). The AAT will look at whether it is efficient to review the other agency’s decision with the ACNC decision, and decide whether it should.

When you apply to review an ACNC objection decision, the AAT will tell us and we will give the AAT all the documents we have about the decision. The AAT may also ask you or the ACNC for other information or documents to help them make their decision.

Find out more about when the AAT can help.

Does the review by the AAT suspend the ACNC objection decision?

No. The ACNC objection decision continues while your AAT review is being dealt with, and until the AAT makes a different decision.

What can happen on a review by the AAT?

The AAT may:

  • agree with the original decision
  • vary the ACNC’s decision
  • set aside the ACNC’s decision and make a new decision, or
  • set aside the ACNC’s decision and require the ACNC to make a new decision by following AAT directions.

If the AAT varies or sets aside the ACNC objection decision, the ACNC has 60 days to give effect to the AAT decision, unless we decide to appeal the AAT’s decision to a court.

If you do not agree with the AAT's decision, you may be able to appeal that decision to a court, but only on a question of law.