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When will I receive the decision?

We will usually make a decision after conducting a hearing.

You will receive our decision at the end of the hearing or in writing at a later date.

Watch our video guide for more information about receiving our decision.

Oral decision at the end of the hearing

We might tell you our decision and the reasons for that decision at the end of the hearing. This is called an oral decision.

We will send you, Services Australia (the Agency) and any other party a notice that sets out our decision without written reasons.

If you want a written copy of the reasons, you must ask us for them within 14 days after the oral decision was given.

Decision in writing

If we do not tell you our decision at the hearing, we will usually send a notice of the decision and the written reasons within 14 days after the hearing.

A copy is also sent to the Agency and any other party.


What does the decision mean?

We can make the following decisions:

  • Affirm the decision: the decision is not changed
  • Vary the decision: the decision is changed in some way
  • Set aside the decision and substitute a new decision: the decision is replaced with a new decision
  • Set aside and remit the decision: the matter is sent back to the Agency to make a new decision.

What happens next?

The Agency must implement our decision or depending on the type of decision we are reviewing, either:

  • apply to us for a second review of the decision, or
  • appeal against our decision to the Federal Circuit Court or Federal Court within 28 days after receiving our decision.

Any other party to the review can also lodge an application for a second review or an appeal.

If the Agency has not put our decision into action and there has been no appeal or application for a second review after 28 days, you should contact the Agency.

You can contact the Commonwealth Ombudsman if you are unhappy with a delay.


What if I do not agree with the decision?

If you think our decision is wrong, you can either:

  • apply to us for a second review of some types of decisions; or
  • appeal to the Federal Circuit Court or Federal Court.

You can apply to us for a second review of the following decisions:

  • a refusal to extend the time to apply for a first review of a Child Support decision
  • a decision relating to a person's percentage of care for a child including the date of effect of the decision.

Find out how to apply for a second review of a child support decision.

All Child Support first review decisions can be appealed to the Federal Circuit Court or Federal Court within 28 days after receiving our decision, but only on a question of law.


Is the decision made public?

We publish a selection of Child Support first review decisions with written reasons on the AustLII website.

A published Child Support first review decision must not include names or other details which might identify a party or any other person.

Look at the Publication of decisions policy for more information about the decisions we publish.

If you are concerned about information that has been, or might be, published in a decision, you can apply to us not to publish some information or the entire decision. Write to us stating what you want kept confidential and why. If we are satisfied it is in the public interest, we can decide to:

  • edit a decision to remove information
  • not publish a decision, or
  • recall a published decision.