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Future act mediation

What is mediation?

Mediation is a voluntary dispute resolution process involving an independent facilitator known as a mediator. The mediator assists the parties to identify issues, develop options, consider alternatives and reach agreement.

Future act mediation typically involves a series of meetings between the Government party, the grantee parties and a native title party, assisted by the mediator. The mediator helps parties to explore issues, develop options for agreement and make decisions. The role of the mediator is performed by a Tribunal member or an accredited member of staff.

Mediation can be conducted using a range of formats, whether in person, over videoconference or by telephone.

Why mediation?

Mediation provides a framework for constructive negotiations, and encourages parties to develop positive ongoing working relationships.

Mediation can help parties gain a better understanding of the issues, the other parties’ perspectives, and the options for reaching agreement. It encourages a constructive discussion where each party is able to talk about its point of view and have control over the outcome.

The Tribunal does not charge fees for its future act mediation services.

How do I request mediation assistance?

Any party involved in the ‘right to negotiate’ procedure may ask the Tribunal to provide mediation assistance. Once the Tribunal receives a request, it must attempt to mediate between the parties. A request can be made at any time, including after a party applies to the Tribunal for a future act determination.

A request can be made by sending an email to 

What to expect in future act mediation

Once a matter has been referred to the Tribunal, a mediator will be appointed. The mediator will organise a series of conferences, assisted by a Tribunal staff member. Parties may participate in the conferences on their own behalf or through a representative and participants may attend the conferences in person, over videoconference or by telephone.

Future act mediation is confidential, subject to certain exceptions. If a negotiation party makes an application to the Tribunal for a future act determination, the Tribunal can use and disclose information provided by a mediation participant to establish whether a party has negotiated in good faith. The Tribunal can also use or disclose information provided in the course of a mediation with the consent of the parties.​