Royal Commissions and Commissions of Inquiry

This list includes all Royal Commissions and Commissions of Inquiry (the nomenclature varies) appointed by the Australian Government from 1902, under the provisions of the Royal Commissions Act 1902.  It does not include Royal Commissions appointed by Australian state or territory governments, unless the Australian Government was also involved.

Administrative control of all Royal Commission records is the responsibility of the department which administers the Royal Commissions Act 1902. Initially the Act was administered by the Department of External Affairs (CA 7), before passing to the Prime Minister's Department (CA 12) in 1912.

A Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry into Justice Lionel Murphy commenced in 1986. While the Inquiry was not set up under the Royal Commissions Act 1902 (it was set up under the Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry Act 1986 and later terminated by the Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry (Repeal) Act 1986) a link to the page on the Parliament website has been provided for information. For more information on the establishment of such an inquiry as an alternative to a Royal Commission see the letter from the Clerk of the Senate (Rosemary Laing) to Senator Peter Whish-Wilson of 16 August 2016 - Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry into the Financial Sector.

For background on Royal Commissions, see the Inquiry into the Royal Commissions Act conducted by the Australian Law Reform Commission in 2009.

Reports column: indicates the location of the report in the Parliamentary Papers Series, held at major libraries. The annotation "tabled not printed" designates reports presented to Parliament which are not ordered by Parliament to be printed. Whilst these are parliamentary papers, they do not form part of the Parliamentary Papers Series. Some of these items were published separately, and some have what is known as a List Number which is relevant only for Parliamentary Library staff. Some unpublished reports are held by the National Archives of Australia; in some of these cases, the location symbol NAA is used. Reports are also available in the Senate Tabled Papers Database

State column: indicates Royal Commissions which were appointed both by the Commonwealth and the states/territories named.

Last updated 28 October 2021.

Title Date of Letters Patent–Date Final Report Presented Commissioners Report (Year / Volume / Pages) State
Royal Commission appointed to inquire into and report upon the arrangements made for the transport of troops returning from service in South Africa in the S.S. "Drayton Grange" ... 12 August–9 October 1902. Final report. A. McLean (Chair), D. A. Gresswell , G. McGregor, D. Thomson , W. D. Williams 1901-02/II/119-35  
Royal Commission on sites for the seat of government of the Commonwealth 14 January–17 July 1903. Final report and Letters Patent. J. Kirkpatrick (Chair), A. W. Howitt, H. C. Stanley , G. Stewart 1903/II/211-320  
Royal Commission on the Bonuses for Manufactures Bill 15 January 1903–2 March 1904. Final report and Letters Patent. C. C. Kingston (Chair), E. N. C. Braddon, J. Cook, S. W. Cooke, G. W. Fuller, L. E. Groom, W. M. Hughes, J. W. Kirwan, J. W. McCay, S. Mauger, D. Watkins, J. C. Watson 1904/II/1407-1620  
Royal Commission on the butter industry 11 April 1904–27 July 1905. Final report and Letters Patent. G. C. Morrison (Chair), G. Graham, H. G. Turner 1904/II/1621-31, 1905/II/1219-91  
Royal Commission on the Navigation Bill 29 June 1904–14 June 1906. Final report and Letters Patent. W. M. Hughes (Chair), G. B. Edwards, L. E. Groom, R. S. Guthrie, W. Knox, H. de Largie, J. Macfarlane, S. Mauger, D. Thomson 1906/III/1-1036, 1907-08/IV/1-59  
Royal Commission on the affray at Goaribari Island, British New Guinea, on the 6th of March, 1904 25 July 1904–13 September 1904. Final report and Letters Patent C. E. R. Murray 1904/II/67-175  
Royal Commission on customs and excise tariffs 12 December 1904–9 August 1907. [Letters patent 12 December 1904]. Final report J. Quick (Chair), F. Clarke, J. S. Clemons, J. M. Fowler, G. W. Fuller, W. G. Higgs, G. McGregor, T. Playford, G. W. Wamsley 1905/II/223-67, 1906/IV-V (whole vols ), 1907-08/IV/529-1673  
Royal Commission on old-age pensions 27 February 1905–19 June 1906. Final report A. Chapman (Chair), F. W. Bamford, L. Bonython, C. E. Frazer, J. P. Gray, H. W. Lee, K. O'Malley, J. Page, G. F. Pearce, T. Skene, S. Smith, J. Styles 1906/III/1435-1805, 1907-08/II/1251-1253  
Royal Commission on the tobacco monopoly 30 December 1905–14 June 1906. Final report G. F. Pearce (Chair), E. Findley, J. P. Gray, J. H. Keating, J. C. Stewart, W. H. Story, J. Styles 1906/III/1807-2234  
Royal Commission on ocean shipping service 11 January–29 June 1906. Final report. J. Thomas (Chair), J. M. Chanter, J. Gibb, C. McDonald, H. Mahon, S. Smith, W. G. Spence, D. Storrer, H. Willis 1906/III/1037-1433  
British New Guinea—Royal Commission of inquiry into the present conditions, including the method of government, of the Territory of Papua, and the best means for their improvement 27 August 1906–20 February 1907Letters Patent. Final report and Letters Patent Pt. 1, Part 2. J. A. K. MacKay (Chair), C. E. Herbert, W. E. Parry Okeden 1907/I/137-463  
Royal Commission on secret drugs, cures, and foods 11 December 1906–8 August 1907. Final report and Letters Patent O. C. Beale 1907-08/IV/61-527  
Royal Commission on postal services 22 June 1908–5 October 1910. Final report and Letters Patent J. H. Cook (Chair), H. de Largie, E. Mulcahy, C. C. Salmon, D. Storrer, W. Webster, W. H. Wilks 1910/IV-V (whole vols )  
Royal Commission on insurance 15 December 1908–1 July 1910. Final report and Letters Patent Pt. 1, Pt. 2 J. H. Hood (Chair), G. H. Knibbs 1909/II/1393-94, 1910/II/1043-1346  
Royal Commission on stripper harvesters and drills 15 December 1908–30 July 1909. Final report and Letters Patent A. Poynton (Chair), J. M. Chanter, G. W. Fuller, J. K. McDougall, S. Sampson 1909/II/1477-1874  
Royal Commission on Tasmanian customs leakage 30 December 1910–3 October 1911. Final report and Letters Patent J. A. Jensen (Chair), F. W. Bamford, J. Forrest, W. J. Lyne, W. J. McWilliams, E. A. Roberts, A. Wynne, W. N. Hedges, S. Sampson 1911/III/853-1238  
Royal Commission on the sugar industry 24 October 1911–4 December 1912. Final Report and Letters Patent J. H. Gordon (Chair 1911–12), W. J. Brown (Chair 1912), R. M. M. Anderson, T. W. Crawford, A. Hinchcliffe, M. R. Shannon 1912/III/1035-1125, 1913/IV/1169-2316  
Royal Commission on the pearl-shelling industry 3 April 1912–30 August 1916. Final Report. Letters Patent. F. W. Bamford (Chair), T. Givens, W. E. Johnson, W. J. McWilliams, H. Mahon, W. Maloney 1913/III/577-803, 1914-17/V/831-41  
Royal Commission on the fruit industry 12 April 1912–8 October 1914. Final Minority Report and Letters Patent. Final Majority report. F. J. Foster (Chair), W. F. Finlayson, D. J. Gordon, P. J. Lynch, R. K. Ready, S. Sampson, J. Thomson 1913/IV/1-1167, 1914/II/223-45, 1914-17/V/193-211  
Royal Commission appointed to inquire into certain charges against Mr. Henry Chinn 4 January–27 November 1913. Final Report H. Hodges 1913/III/1245-1252  
Royal Commission on Northern Territory railways and ports 28 March 1913–24 June 1914. Final report F. Clarke (Chair), D. Lindsay, A. Combes. 1914/II/677-731  
Royal Commission on powellised timber 19 December 1913–8 October 1914. Interim Report. Final Report and Letters Patent. H. Gregory (Chair), J. Bennett, R. J. Burchell, W. J. McWilliams, K. O'Malley, A. Poynton, H. Sinclair 1914/II/655-56, 1914-17/V/843-90  
Royal Commission upon the Commonwealth electoral law and administration 20 January 1914–14 July 1915. Interim Report. Final Report and Letters Patent H. Sinclair (Chair), R. W. Foster, W. Maloney, W. H. Laird Smith, R. Patten 1914/II/211-12, 1914-15/II/435-54  
Royal Commission on meat export trade 5 June–2 December 1914. Final Report and Letters Patent P. W. Street 1914-17/V/563-609  
Royal Commission on food supplies and trade and industry during the war 31 August–16 December 1914. Final Report and Letters Patent A. Deakin (Chair), G. H. Knibbs , D. Thomson 1914-17/V/143-86  
Royal Commission on mail services and trade development between Australia and the New Hebrides 31 March–28 July 1915. Final Report and Letters Patent F. W. Bamford (Chair), W. E. Johnson 1914-17/V/665-724  
Royal Commission on Liverpool Military Camp, New South Wales 12 July–20 August 1915. Final Report G. E. Rich 1914-17/II/273-97  
Royal Commission on the charges made by D. L. Gilchrist concerning the construction of the western section of the Kalgoorlie to Port Augusta Railway 23 March–13 September 1916. Final report J. G. Eagleson 1914-17/IV/1341-1400  
Royal Commission to inquire into and report upon certain charges against the Administrator and other officers of the Northern Territory Administration 11 May–13 September 1916 A. N. Barnett 1914-17/I/484 (reference only, tabled not printed). Available on the Senate Tabled Papers Database  
Royal Commission on Federal Capital Administration 14 June 1916–14 June 1917. Final Report (v.1, v.2, v.3, v.4, v.5, v.6)   W. Blacket 1914-17/II/1067-1112, 1917/II/178  
Royal Commission on Java and the East Indies , Singapore and the Straits Settlements 7 February 1917–10 May 1918. Final Report and Letters Patent J. J. Long 1917-19/V/1063-97  
Royal Commission on Navy and Defence Administration 2 July 1917–4 July 1919. Final report and Letters Patent W. G. McBeath (Chair), J. Chalmers , P. T. Taylor , F. A. Verco 1917-19/IV/175-463  
Royal Commission on the war—Australian Imperial Force. Report as to number of members fit for active service and number of reinforcements and enlistments required 6 March–4 April 1918. Final report S. W. Griffith 1917-19/IV/647-50  
Royal Commission on Public Service administration, Commonwealth of Australia 2 October 1918–28 July 1920. Final Report and Letters Patent D. C. McLachlan 1920-21/IV/1525-1620  
Royal Commission ... upon the public expenditure of the Commonwealth of Australia with a view to effecting economies 21 November 1918–6 April 1921. Final Report R. Gibson (Chair), G. G. Haldane , G. H. Turton 1917-19/V/1525-1615, 1920-21/IV/1297-1517  
Royal Commission on taxation of leasehold estates in Crown lands 18 December 1918–9 October 1919. Final Report and Letters Patent G. H. Knibbs (Chair), H. O. Allan , H. A. G. Curry 1917-19/VI/1027-72  
Royal Commission on the sugar industry 31 March 1919–18 March 1920. Final Report and Letters Patent A. B. Piddington , N. C. Lockyer , S. Mills 1920-21/IV/905-60  
Royal Commission on industrial troubles on Melbourne wharfs 7 June 1919–6 May 1920.
Final Report
G. J. Dethridge 1920-21/IV/687-92  
Royal Commission on late German New Guinea 12 August 1919–21 May 1920. Final Report J. H. P. Murray (Chair), A. A. Hunt , W. H. Lucas 1920-21/III/1539-1621  
Royal Commission to inquire into complaints by the munition worker passengers to Australia by the transport "Bahia Castillo" 15 October 1919–24 December 1919 [date report completed]. Final Report P. Cohen (Chair), C. R. W. Brewis, H. W. Lloyd NAA Item ID 373923; Control symbol 2/19/9800  
Royal Commission on Northern Territory Administration 12 November 1919–21 May 1920. Final Report N. V. Ewing 1920-21/III/1653-69  
Royal Commission on the basic wage 6 December 1919 23 November 1920. Final Report and Letters patent.
Supplementary report
A. B. Piddington (Chair), R. Cheney, H. C. Gibson, W. D. Gilfillan, E. E. Keep, T. C. Maher, A. C. Morley, G. M. Allard, J. A. Harper 1920-21/IV/529-645  
Royal Commission on taxation

vol. 1; vol. 2; vol. 3; vol. 4; vol. 5
10 September 1920–13 June 1923. W. W. Kerr (Chair), M. B. Duffy, J. G. Fairleigh, J. J. Garvan, J. Jolly, S. Mills, W. T. Missingham, J. Thomson 1920-21/III/1151-1243, 1922/II/1023-1177, 1923-24/III/2193-2304 QLD, TAS, WA
Royal Commission on the increase of the selling price of coal 30 September 1920–20 October 1920 [date report completed] C. Hibble (Chair), A. Jobson , H. H. Ling NAA A460, control symbol A5/42  
Royal Commission on the matter of uniform railway gauge 8 February–12 October 1921. Final Report and Letters Patent J. J. Garvan (Chair), R. Blake , F. M. Whyte 1920-21/V/757-98  
Royal Commission on pillaging of ships' cargoes 12 February–12 July 1921. Final report W. M. MacFarlane 1920-21/IV/797-826  
Royal Commission on Cockatoo Island Dockyard 25 April–14 July 1921. M. Reid (Chair), W. J. McWilliams, W. G. Mahoney, W. M. Marks, C. W. C. Marr, T. J. Ryan, R. V. Wilson 1920-21/IV/1-16  
Royal Commission upon the loyalty to the British Crown of German Nationals resident in Australia whose property is liable to a charge created by the Treaty of Peace Regulations made under the Treaty of Peace (Germany) Act 1919–1920 7 July 1921–11 November 1921 [date report completed] W. M. MacFarlane NAA A6006, control symbol 1921/12/31  
Royal Commission on the circumstances attending the supposed loss at sea of the steamship "Sumatra" 25 July–3 August 1923 J. J. Cohen , H. Chudleigh , J. Vine-Hall 1923-24/I/113 [reference only; tabled not printed]. Copy of report is in the Senate Tabled Papers database (STP no. 229/1923-24.   
Royal Commission in connection with sugar purchases by the Commonwealth through Mr. W. E. Davies in September and October, 1920 24 August 1923–27 March 1924. Final report E. F. Mitchell 1923-24/II/1647-57  
Royal Commission in connection with joinery supplied to the War Service Homes Commissioner in March, 1920 7 September 1923–27 March 1924. Final Report and Letters Patent H. H. Henchman 1923-24/IV/353-59  
Royal Commission on the Navigation Act 7 September 1923–13 August 1925. Report and Letters Patent; 2nd report J. H. Prowse (Chair), F. Anstey, W. L. Duncan, H. E. Elliott, C. S. McHugh, A. C. Seabrook, G. E. Yates, H. J. M. Payne 1923-24/II/1019-1120, 1925/I/129 (reference only), 1925/II/1323-43  
Royal Commission on national insurance 7 September 1923–5 October 1927. Letters PatentFinal report J. D. Millen (Chair), B. Benny, J. Francis, J. Grant, A. E. Green, R. F. H. Green, J. F. Guthrie, J. A. H. Hunter, A. McDougall, W. G. Mahony 1925/II/1269-1321, 1926-28/IV/1411-86  
Royal Commission on the method for determining the unimproved value of land held under Crown leases 12 July 1924–10 June 1925. Final report and Letters Patent W. W. Kerr (Chair), M. B. Duffy , J. Jolly 1925/II/973-1033  
Royal Commission on the assessment of war service disabilities 27 August 1924–10 June 1925. Final Report C. B. Blackburn (Chair), A. V. M. Anderson, W. W. Giblin, E. S. Jackson, H. S. Newland 1925/II/67-72  
Royal Commission to inquire into extracts from the reports in Parliamentary Debates of speeches made by Mr. Scullin in the House of Representatives on 7th and 19th August, 1924, in relation to land tax matters 9 September 1924–10 June 1925. Final Report and Letters Patent D. S. Edwards 1925/II/1035-61  
Royal Commission on the finances of Western Australia, as affected by Federation 5 November 1924–23 September 1925. Final report and Letters Patent W. G. Higgs (Chair), J. Entwistle , S. Mills 1925/II/1463-1641  
Royal Commission on health 7 January 1925–14 January 1926. Final Report and Letters Patent G. A. Syme (Chair), J. S. Greig , F. S. Hone , S. R. Innes-Noad, R. H. Todd 1926-28/IV/1247-1370  
Royal Commission on Norfolk Island affairs 20 January–13 August 1926. Final Report and Letters Patent F. Whysall 1926-28/IV/1487-1563  
Royal Commission on certain matters in connexion with the British Phosphate Commission 13 June–11 August 1926. Final report and Letters Patent A. Robinson 1926-28/IV/106784  
Royal Commission on wireless 28 January–5 October 1927. Final Report and Letters Patent J. H. Hammond (Chair), C. E. Crocker , J. A. M. Elder, A. J. B. McMaster 1926-28/IV/1565-1603  
Royal Commission on the Edie Creek (New Guinea) leases 2 March–5 October 1927. Final Report P. B. MacGregor 1926-28/IV/1213-34  
Royal Commission on the moving picture industry in Australia 28 May 1927–26 April 1928. Final report and Letters Patent W. M. Marks (Chair), W. L. Duncan, F. M. Forde, J. Grant, H. Gregory, H. Hays, L. W. Nott 1926-28/IV/1371-1409  
Royal Commission on the Constitution 18 August 1927–21 November 1929. Final Report and Letters Patent J. B. Peden (Chair), P. P. Abbott, T. R. Ashworth, E. K. Bowden, H. P. Colebatch, M. B. Duffy, D. L. McNamara 1929-31/II/897-1296  
Royal Commission on child endowment or family allowances 28 September 1927–18 March 1929. Final Report and Letters Patent T. S. O'Halloran (Chair), J. Curtin , I. Evans , S. Mills , F. M. Muscio 1929/II/1281-1405  
Royal Commission of inquiry into fatalities at Bundaberg 1 February–13 June 1928. Final Report C. H. Kellaway (Chair), P. MacCallum , A. H. Tebbutt 1926-28/IV/1085-1211  
Royal Commission appointed to inquire into statements in the press in regard to offers alleged to have been made to members to resign seats in the Federal Parliament 28 May–4 September 1928. Final Report and Letters Patent E. Scholes 1926-28/IV/1235-45  
Royal Commission on the finances of South Australia, as affected by Federation 28 July 1928–22 August 1929. Final Report and Letters Patent J. Cook (Chair), A. E. Barton , H. R. Brookes 1929/II/2201-48  
Royal Commission on the coal industry 3 June–21 November 1929. Report. C. G. W. Davidson (Chair), H. W. Gepp, L. K. Ward


Royal Commission appointed to inquire into allegations affecting members of the Parliamentary Joint Committee of Public Accounts in connexion with claims made by broadcasting companies against the Commonwealth Government 15 May–8 August 1930. Final Report and Letters Patent G. J. Dethridge 1929-31/III/629-38  
Royal Commission on Jacob Johnson 29 August 1931–1 October 1931 [date report completed] G. S. Beeby NAA A432, control symbol 1929/170, Part 8, Attachment 2  
Royal Commission on performing rights 19 September 1932–24 May 1933. Final report L. Owen 1932-34/IV/1163-1220  
Royal Commission on taxation

6 October 1932–28 November 1934 v.1v.2v.3v.4 D. G. Ferguson (Chair), E. V. Nixon 1932-34/IV/2249-96, 1934-37/III/1917-2118  
Royal Commission on mineral oils and petrol and other products of mineral oils 6 April 1933–8 April 1935. Final Report and Letters Patent S. E. Lamb (Chair), J. Gunn , A. J. Hancock 1934-37/III/457-820  
Royal Commission on the wheat, flour and bread industries 25 January 1934–1 April 1936. Final Reports (1st + suppl, 2nd, 3rd, 4th,
5th and concluding report) and Letters Patent
H. W. Gepp (Chair), T. S. Cheadle , C. W. Harper, E. P. M. Sheedy , S. M. Wadham 1932-34/IV/2425-67, 1934-37/IV/1-690  
Royal Commission appointed to inquire into and report upon the circumstances associated with the retirement of Lieutenant-Commander Alan Dermot Casey from the Royal Australian Navy 11 July–23 October 1934. Final report J. M. Napier 1934-37/III/89-103  
Royal Commission appointed to inquire into the monetary and banking systems at present in operation in Australia ... 15 November 1935–24 August 1937. Final report and Letters Patent J. M. Napier (Chair), J. P. Abbott, J. B. Chifley, R. C. Mills, E. V. Nixon, H. A. Pitt 1934-37/V/1557-1964  
Royal Commission on doctors' remuneration for national insurance service and other contract practice 18 July 1938– G. J. Dethridge (Chair), G. M. Allard , R. D. Mulvey Commission lapsed, no report issued; NAA AA1969/10, control symbols 2A-2D  
Royal Commission regarding the contract for the erection of additions to the General Post Office, Sydney 7 June–7 September 1939. Final report A. V. Maxwell 1937-40/IV/1025-51  
Royal Commission to inquire into and report upon the contract or contracts with Abbco Bread Co. Pty. Limited for the supply of bread to the Department of the Army, and other matters 28 March–21 August 1941. Final report A. V. Maxwell 1940-43/III/9-44  
Royal Commission to inquire into circumstances under which certain public monies were used and to whom, and for what purposes such moneys were paid ... 27 September–25 November 1941 P. H. Rogers 1940-43/III/241 [reference only; tabled not printed]. Copy of report is in the Senate Tabled Papers database (STP no. 3241/1940-41, entitled ‘Use of special funds for security purposes’)   
Royal Commission in the matter of an inquiry into a statement that there was a document missing from the official files in relation to "The Brisbane Line" 29 June–28 September 1943 C. J. Lowe 1943-44/I/13 [reference only; tabled not printed]  
Royal Commission to inquire into and report upon certain transactions of the Sydney Land Sales Control Office, and the Canberra Land Sales Control Office of the Treasury 13 June–25 September 1947 R. C. Kirby 1946-48/I/263 [reference only; tabled not printed]  
Royal Commission appointed to inquire into certain transactions in relation to timber rights in the Territory of Papua-New Guinea 11 January–24 June 1949. Final report G. C. Ligertwood 1948-49/IV/1155-93  
Royal Commission on the Port Augusta to Alice Springs Railway June 1951–9 July 1952 A. A. Wolff (Chair), R. J. Fitch , J. A. Fargher NAA AA1972/341, control symbol 72  
Royal Commission on television 11 February 1953–29 September 1954. Final report and Letters Patent G. W. Paton (Chair), C. B. Bednall, M. Foxton, R. G. Osborne, R. C. Wilson, N. S. Young 1954-55/III/679-809  
Royal Commission on espionage 3 May 1954–14 September 1955. Final report and Letters Patent W. F. L. Owen 1954-55/III/187-677  
Royal Commission on alleged improper practices and improper refusal to co-operate with the Victoria Police Force on the part of persons employed in the Postmaster-General's Department in Victoria in relation to illegal gambling 23 May 1962–23 May 1963. Final report and Letters Patent R. L. Taylor 1962-63/V/397-554  
Royal Commission on loss of H.M.A.S. Voyager 14 February–26 August 1964. Final report J. A. Spicer 1964-65-66/XIII/289-341  
Royal Commission on the statement of Lieutenant Commander Cabban and matters incidental thereto 31 May 1967–13 March 1968. Final report S. C. Burbury (Chair), K. W. Asprey , G. A. G. Lucas 1968/1/967-1245  


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Title Date of Letters Patent–Date Final Report Presented Commissioners Report (Year / Vol / Place No.) State
Royal Commissions into exploratory and production drilling for petroleum in the area of the Great Barrier Reef 5 May 1970–11 February 1975. Final report (v.1, v. 2) G. Wallace , V. J. Moroney , J. E. Smith 1975/13/2-3 QLD
Aboriginal Land Rights Commission 8 February 1973–17 July 1974. Final report (v. 1, v. 2 A. E. Woodward 1973/1/1, 1974/1/1  
Australian Post Office Commission of inquiry 22 February 1973–23 July 1974.Final report (v. 1, v. 2 J. Vernon (Chair), B. J. Callinan , J. J. Kennedy 1974/2/1-2  
Commission of inquiry into land tenures 4 May 1973–26 May 1976. First report, final report. R. Else-Mitchell , R. L. Mathews , G. J. Dusseldorp 1974/8/10, 1976/12/1  
Royal Commission on petroleum 12 September 1973–8 December 1976. 

[letters patent 12 Sept 1973, GG 129, 20 September 1973].

Reports (1st (v. 1, shortages, 2nd (v. 1, v. 2), 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th)

W. H. Collins 1974/14/2, 1975/13/4, 1975/13/1, 1976/16/3-5  
Commission of Inquiry into the maritime industry 25 September 1973–2 November 1976.
Reports (Future, Legislation, IMC, Standards, Nav aids, Training
M. M. Summers 1974/17/15-16, 1976/23/1-5  
Independent Inquiry into Frequency Modulation Broadcasting 27 November 1973–13 March 1974. Final report F. McLean , C. C. Renwick 1974/2/6  
Commission of Inquiry into transport to and from Tasmania 10 April 1974–25 March 1976. Final report J. F. Nimmo 1976/24/5  
Royal Commission on Australian Government Administration 6 June 1974–18 August 1976. Final report (5 vols).  H. C. Coombs (Chair), P. H. Bailey, E. Campbell, J. E. Isaac, P. R. Munro 1976/19/1-5  
Royal Commission on human relationships 21 August 1974–28 February 1978. Final report (5 vols).  E. Evatt (Chair), F. R. Arnott , A. B. Deveson 1976/8/9, 104-108/1978  
Royal Commission on intelligence and security 21 August 1974–25 October 1977. Reports (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th (v.I, v.II) 5th–8th) R. M. Hope 92/1977, 246-249/1977. Malcolm Fraser (Prime Minister), Ministerial statement, ‘The first report outlines the procedures followed by the Royal Commission and requires no further comment. The second report makes findings and recommendations on security checking and a security appeals tribunal. The third report dealing with the machinery for ministerial and official control, direction and coordination of Australia's intelligence and security services was the subject of the statement I made in the House on 5 May this year [1977] (the third report was in an abridged form prepared by the royal commissioner and was tabled on 5 May) … The fifth report is about the Australian Secret Intelligence Service ... will not be published as to do so would jeopardise national security ... The sixth report is about the Defence Signals Division. On the recommendation of the royal commission this report will not be made public … The seventh report, written by a constant to the Commission, is an historical study of Australian intelligence and security services. The eighth concerns administrative arrangements for the storage and custody of the Royal Commission's records. I will not be commenting further on these last two reports in this statement’, House of Representatives, Debates, 25 October 1977, pp. 2333–2339. The National Archives of Australia holds a set of key records of the Royal Commission here (for v. 8 see: NAA: A8908,8, Barcode 4727816).  
Royal Commission into alleged payments to maritime unions 5 September 1974–25 May 1976. Final report J. B. Sweeney List number 340/1975 (tabled not printed); 1976/24/4  
Royal Commission to inquire into and report upon certain incidents in which Aborigines were involved in the Laverton area [WA Royal Commission with a Commonwealth nominee and costs shared by Commonwealth and WA Governments] 23 April 1975–13 April 1976. Final report. G. D. Clarkson (Chair), E. F. Bridge , E. F. Johnston WA Parl Papers 1976, Vol 8. WA
Royal Commission into Matters Relating to Norfolk Island 15 May 1975–16 November 1976. Final report and Letters Patent J. A. Nimmo 1976/21/4  

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Title Date of Letters Patent–Date Final Report Presented Commissioners Report (Year / Paper No.) State
Australian Royal Commission of inquiry into drugs 13 October 1977–16 September 1980. Final report (Book A, B, C, D, E).   E. S. Williams 275/1979, 25-29/1980, 226/1980 VIC , QLD , WA , TAS
Royal Commission of inquiry into matters in relation to electoral redistribution Queensland, 1977 24 April 1978–15 August 1978. Final report and Letters Patent.   D. G. McGregor 263/1978  
Commission of inquiry into the efficiency and administration of hospitals 29 August 1979–26 February 1981. Interim report (June 1980).
Final report (v.1, v.2, v.2 supp, v.3) and Letters Patent (6 March 1980 in v.1).
J. H. Jamison (Chair), C. W. L. de Boos , H. R. H. Holmes à Court, J. S. Yeatman 181/1980, 20-22/1981. Note: MJT Mackellar (Minister for Health), Alteration in membership of Commission of Inquiry into the Efficiency and Administration of Hospitals, ‘Mr Holmes a Court relinquished his commission in connection with the Inquiry into the Efficiency and Administration of Hospitals. The Governor-General had granted his request. Mr Mackellar also announced that the Governor-General had issued new Letters Patent under the Royal Commissions act which appointed Mr CWL de Boos to the Commission of Inquiry’, media release, 6 March 1980. TAS, QLD , WA
Commission of inquiry into the viability of the Christmas Island phosphate industry 20 December 1979–21 February 1980. Final report W. W. Sweetland 36/1980  
Royal Commission on the activities of the Federated Ship Painters and Dockers Union 10 September 1980–1 November 1984. Interim reports?
Final report and Letters Patent (v.1, v.2, v.3, v.4, v.5, Append.)
F. X. Costigan 72/1982, 185/1982, 588G/1982, 223/1983, 284-289/1984 VIC
Royal Commission of inquiry into drug trafficking 25 June 1981–31 May 1983. Final report and Letters Patent. D. G. Stewart 119/1982, 41/1983, 186/1983 [NZ Report] NSW, VIC , QLD, NZ
Royal Commission into the activities of the Australian Building Construction Employees' and Builders Labourers' Federation 20 August 1981–20 October 1982. Final report. J. S. Winneke 296/1982 VIC
Royal Commission into Australian meat industry 12 September 1981–21 September 1982. Final report and Letters Patent. A. E. Woodward 222/1982 VIC
Royal Commission of inquiry into the activities of the Nugan Hand Group [extension of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Drug Trafficking 1981–1983] 28 March 1983–27 November 1985. Final report (v.1, v.2) and Letters Patent.   D. G. Stewart 275/1983, 65/1985, 368-369/1985 NSW
Royal Commission on the use and effects of chemical agents on Australian personnel in Vietnam 13 May 1983–22 August 1985.Final report (v.1, v.2, v.3, v.4, v.5, v.6, v.7, v.8, v.9 P. G. Evatt 288-296/1985  
Royal Commission on Australia's security and intelligence agencies 17 May 1983–22 May 1985. Final reports and Letters Patent (Terms of Reference (c); ONA and JIO; General; ASIO; Sheraton Hotel) R. M. Hope 323/1983, 1/1984, 230-232/1985  
Commission of inquiry into compensation arising from social security conspiracy prosecutions 9 February 1984–10 June 1986. Final report and Letters Patent (9 Feb 1984 and 16 Aug 1984) R. Mitchell 174/1986  
Royal Commission into British nuclear tests in Australia 16 July 1984–5 December 1985. Final report and Letters Patent (v.1, v.2, v.3 J. R. McClelland (Chair), J. Fitch , W. J. Jonas 482-484/1985  
Royal Commission of inquiry into alleged telephone interceptions 29 March 1985–1 May 1986. Final report and Letters Patent D. G. Stewart 155/1986 NSW & VIC
Royal Commission of inquiry into Chamberlain convictions 2 April 1986–2 June 1987. Final report and Letters Patent T. R. Morling 192/1987 NT
Royal Commission into Grain Storage, Handling and Transport 13 October 1986–15 March 1988. Final report and Letters Patent (v.1, v.2, v.3) J. C. McColl 40-42/1988 NSW, VIC , QLD , WA , SA
Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody 16 October 1987–9 May 1991 (v. 1, v. 2, v. 3, v. 4, v. 5), Regional reports (WA v. 1, WA v. 2, Qld, NSW/Vic/Tas) J. H. Muirhead (Chair 1987–89), E. F. Johnston (Chair 1989–91),  J. H. Wootten, L. F. Wyvill, D. J. O'Dea, P. Dodson 20-24, 101-102, 126, 129, 142, 209, 265, 409-410/1989; 48-49, 55-57, 151-158, 195-199, 217-228, 292-300, 386-387, 404/1990; 13, 24-29, 63-88, 119-136/1991 NSW, VIC, QLD, WA, SA, TAS, NT
Commission of Inquiry into the Australian Secret Intelligence Service 15 March 1994–9 May 1995. [Tabled 1 June 1995 - Public Edition only. Report was otherwise classified] GJ Samuels , MH Codd List number 281/1995 ( tabled not printed)  
Royal Commission of Inquiry into the Leasing by the Commonwealth of Accommodation in Centenary House 16 May 1994–7 November 1994. Final report and Letters Patent TR Morling 344/1994  
Commission of Inquiry into the Relations Between the CAA and Seaview Air 25 October 1994–9 October 1996 Final report and Letters Patent (v.1, v.2 L Street (1994–95), JH Staunton (1994–96) List numbers 354-355/1996 (tabled not printed).  
HIH Royal Commission 29 August 2001–4 April 2003. Final report and Letters Patent (v.1, v.2, v.3).  NJ Owen 98-100/2003  
Royal Commission into the Building and Construction Industry (archived website including reports and transcripts) 29 August 2001–24 February 2003 TRH Cole List numbers 559, 561/2002 (tabled not printed); 70-91/2003.   
Royal Commission to Inquire into the Centenary House Lease (archived website including report and transcripts) 24 June–6 December 2004. Final report and Letters Patent DA Hunt 26/2005  
Inquiry into certain Australian companies in relation to the UN Oil-For-Food Programme [AWB inquiry] (archived website including reports and transcripts) 10 November 2005–24 November 2006. Final report and Letters Patent (v.1, v.2, v.3, v.4, v.5) TRH Cole 395-399/2006  
Equine Influenza Inquiry (set up under section 66AZE of the Quarantine Act 1908 (Cth), which provides that most of the provisions of the Royal Commissions Act 1902 apply to the Inquiry and the Commissioner as if the Inquiry were a Royal Commission) 25 September 2007–12 June 2008. Final report. The Hon Mr Ian Callinan AC 289/2008  
Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse (website including reports and transcripts) 11 January 2013 (Letters Patent). The Interim Report was released on 30 June 2014. The final reporting date had initially been set for the end of 2015 but a two year extension had been granted. The Governor-General amended the Letters Patent to enable the final report (17 vols) to be delivered by 15 December  2017.             The Hon Justice Peter McClellan (Chair), Mr Bob Atkinson, Justice Jennifer Coate, Mr Robert Fitzgerald, Professor Helen Milroy, Mr Andrew Murray.     
Royal Commission into the Home Insulation Program  12 December 2013 (Letters Patent). Report was to be not later than 30 June 2014. On 29 March 2014 Ian Hanger made a request for additional time to produce his report and on 15 May 2014 the Letters Patent were amended allowing the report to be due on 31 August 2014. The Report was presented on 29 August 2014 and tabled on 1 September 2014. Ian Hanger AM    
Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption

13 March 2014 (Letters Patent). Report and recommendations to be made on or before 31 December 2014. On 30 October 2014 the Letters Patent were amended to extend the deadline to 31 December 2015. An Interim Report (v.1, v.2) was tabled on 19 December 2014. The Final report (v.1, v.2, v.3, v.4, v.5) and Letters Patent were provided to the Governor-General on 28 December 2015. Volume 6 – Confidential Volume – not publicly available.

The Hon Dyson Heydon AC QC    
Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory 1 August 2016 (Letters Patent). Report to be made no later than 31 March 2017.  Amended Letters Patent - 9 February 2017 - Interim Report now due no later that 31 March 2017 and Final report due no later than 1 August 2017. Amended Letters Patent 27 June 2017 - Final Report now due on or before 30 September 2017. Amended Letters Patent 27 September 2017 - Final Report now due on or before 17 November 2017. An Interim Report was published on 30 March 2017. The Final Report was tabled on 17 November 2017. The Findings and Recommendations were published in a single document.

Margaret White AO
Michael Gooda 


Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry (Financial Services Royal Commission)

 14 December 2017 (Letters Patent). An Interim Report of 3 volumes (v.1, v.2, v.3) was tabled on 28  September 2018. The final report was tabled  on 4 February 2019 (v.1, v.2, v.3) An Exhibit List was also tabled. The Hon Kenneth Madison Hayne AC QC

This website was decommissioned by the end of January 2022. An historical record of this website is available on the National Library of Australia's Web Archive. Key documents are available on the website.



Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety 8 October 2018 (Letters Patent). Appointment of the Hon Joseph McGrath and Ms Lynelle Briggs AO 6 December 2018 (Letters Patent). Appointment of the Hon Richard Tracey AM RFD QC (Chair) and Ms Lynelle Briggs AO. An Interim Report is due no later than 31 October 2019 and a Final Report due no later than 30 April 2020. An Interim Report (v.1, v.2, v.3) was published on 31 October 2019. Amended Letters Patent of 13 September 2019 appointed the Hon Tony Pagone QC as an additional Commissioner and as Acting Chair in the absence of the Hon Richard Tracey, and amended the date that the Final Report was due to 12 November 2020. 25 June 2020 (amending Letters Patent). Appointing the Hon Tony Pagone as Commissioner and amending the date that the Final Report was due to 26 February 2021. Final Report (v.1, v.2, v.3A, v.3B, v.4A, v.4B, v.4Cv.5  was delivered to the Governor-General on 26 February 2021. 

The Hon Richard Tracey AM RFD QC (Former Chair)
The Hon Tony Pagone QC (Chair),
Ms Lynelle Briggs AO

Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability 4 April 2019 (Letters Patent). The Interim Report was published 30 October 2020 and a Final Report due no later than 29 April 2022. Amended Letters Patent of 13 September 2019 appointed the Hon Roslyn Atkinson as an additional member and the Hon Ron Sackville as Chair. Other states (NSW, Qld, SA, Tas, Vic, WA) have issued their own Letters Patent. Amended Letters Patent of 13 May 2021 extended the final reporting date to 29 September 2023. By Amended Letters Patent Roslyn Atkinson's appointment ceased on 24 June 2021. The Final Report (12 vols, plus additional introductory volume) was published on 29 September 2023.  The Hon Ron Sackville AO QC (Chair), Ms Barbara Bennett PSM, Dr Rhonda Galbally AC, Ms Andrea Mason OAM, Mr Alastair McEwin,
The Hon John Ryan AM, The Hon Roslyn Gay Atkinson AO.
Royal Commission into National Natural Disaster Arrangements  20 February 2020 (Letters Patent). Final Report was due no later than 31 August 2020. Amended Letters Patent of 23 July 2020 - final report due not later than 28 October 2020.  The Final Report and Appendices were tabled on 28 October 2020. Air Chief Marshal Mark Donald Binskin AC (Retd) (Chair), The Hon Dr Annabelle Bennett AC SC, Professor Andrew Macintosh.    
Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide 8 July 2021 (Letters Patent). Interim report due not later than 11 August 2022. Final report due not later than 15 June 2023. Interim Report was published 11 August 2022 and tabled on 6 September 2022. Amended Letters Patent of  10 April 2022 - final report due not later than 17 June 2024. Mr Naguib Kaldas APM (Chair), The Hon James Sholto Douglas KC, Dr Peggy Brown AO    
Royal Commission into the Robodebt Scheme  18 August 2022 (Letters Patent). Final report due no later than 18 April 2023. Amended Letters Patent of 16 February 2023 extended the final reporting date to 30 June 2023. Amended Letters Patent of 11 May 2023 further extended the final reporting date to 7 July 2023. The Final Report (3v) and a Corrigendum was first published on 7 July 2023. Subsequently, corrections were made and an updated report was published on 11 July 2023. The changes and corrections in the updated edition are listed in the Corrigendum.   Ms Catherine Holmes AC SC (Chair).