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Changes to the law and how it affects you

How Queensland laws are made

In Queensland, laws are made in two ways, either the common law, the decisions made by judges and the courts or legislation made by Parliament. Legislation generally falls into two categories: Acts and Regulations. Only legislation can change or create rights and obligations for citizens or change or affect the operation of laws.

Government Ministers are each responsible for developing Bills and implementing laws relating to their areas of responsibility. These areas are known as a Minister’s ‘portfolio’. The responsibilities of Ministers and their portfolios are set out in Administrative Arrangements Orders.

Find out what Acts each Minister is responsible for.

Queensland has only one house of Parliament known as the Legislative Assembly. There is no house of review (or senate) as in other Australian states and at the Commonwealth level. This means that a Bill can become law without having to pass through two houses of Parliament. There are also a number of Parliamentary committees in Queensland that monitor and review new and changing legislation.

Find out more about Queensland’s committee system.

Why laws are made or changed

Parliament can make, change or abolish laws for several reasons.

For example, existing rights and responsibilities may need to be changed; or a significant government policy may need to be implemented through an Act.

Find out what’s happening in Parliament

Changes in laws can affect you and your life, so it’s a good idea to keep up with what’s happening in Parliament.

How you can influence decisions

Decisions and laws affecting you are made at three levels, the Queensland Parliament, Commonwealth Parliament and your local council.

Politicians can better represent you if you tell them about your concerns and ideas.

The Queensland Parliament provides plenty of ways you can participate in the democratic process and influence decisions.

You can also have your say by attending community cabinet meetings, commenting on consultation meetings, lodging petitions or joining a board or committee. Find out more about having your say.

More information

Last updated
26 April 2017
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