The Guides to Social Policy Law is a collection of publications designed to assist decision makers administering social policy law. The information contained in this publication is intended only as a guide to relevant legislation/policy. The information is accurate as at the date listed at the bottom of the page, but may be subject to change. To discuss individual circumstances please contact Services Australia.

7 Institutions


This part outlines information about institutions that are able to participate in the National Redress Scheme. It also describes the requirements for an institution to participate, and when an institution can be determined as responsible for abuse.

There are 4 types of institutions identified in the Scheme:

  • Commonwealth institutions (such as Commonwealth departments and bodies established under Commonwealth law)
  • State institutions (such as state departments and certain bodies established under individual state laws)
  • Territory institutions (such as territory departments and certain bodies established under individual territory laws)
  • non-government institutions (such as churches, sporting groups and charities).

While all Commonwealth and Territory institutions are participating in the Scheme, State and non-government institutions are only participating in the Scheme if they agree to join the Scheme. The Minister must make a formal declaration, by notifiable instrument, that an institution is a participating institution or is listed through funders of last resort arrangements under the Scheme.

Institutions that participate in the Scheme may also join as part of a group and appoint a representative institution to interact with the Scheme on the group's behalf. For groups of participating non-government institutions, the Minister must be satisfied of the connections between each institution in the group before declaring the group and then the representative institution (which may or may not be an institution participating in the Scheme).

Institutions that no longer exist (known as defunct institutions) can be included under the Scheme where a person or organisation has agreed to be the representative for the defunct institution and accept liability for redress, for example, where a state public school no longer exists but the relevant state government agrees it will be its representative.

Act reference: NRSAct Part 5-1 Participating institutions, section 107 Simplified outline of this Part, Part 6-2 Division 2 – Funder of last resort

National Redress Scheme for Institutional Child Sexual Abuse Declaration 2018

National Redress Scheme for Institutional Child Sexual Abuse (Funders of Last Resort) Declaration 2019

Policy reference: 1.1.P.20 Participating institution, 1.1.D.20 Defunct institution, 1.1.L.10 Listed institution, 1.1.F.20 Funder of last resort

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