Maria Gittins

Special Counsel

Maria has practiced in native title and resources law since joining Crown Law in 2002. She is regarded as an expert in the field, and advises the highest levels of State Government on all native title and interrelated land use matters including protected areas and other State land, Aboriginal land and cultural heritage and mining and resources.

  • acting for the State in relation to numerous native title claims, including appearing at Court hearings and representing the State at mediation meetings
  • providing strategic advice in relation to non-native title outcomes, including the creation of tenures and interests such as freehold, leasehold, reserves, roads, easements and trustee leases, and the creation of tenures under the Nature Conservation Act 1992 and the Forestry Act 1959
  • negotiating complex agreements involving multiple strata of land use including indigenous land use agreements, cultural heritage agreement, conservation agreements and other land use agreements
  • providing advice in relation to national parks and other protected areas, State forests and timber reserves, the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area, tree clearing legislation, the State and Commonwealth Great Barrier Reef marine parks, Commonwealth environmental legislation, water legislation, biodiscovery legislation and carbon trading
  • advising on major infrastructure projects in relation to tenure and native title matters, including the compulsory acquisition of land under the Acquisition of Land Act 1967 and the State Development and Public Works Organisation Act 1971
  • advising on the provisions of the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act 2003 and negotiating agreements under that Act.
  • drafting the State’s guidelines for preparing and assessing connection material for native title claims
  • providing policy advice on significant native title issues including proposed amendment to the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth)
  • advising on mining and associated issues, under the Mineral Resources Act 1989, the Petroleum Act 1923, the Petroleum and Gas (Production and Safety) Act 2004 and the Coal Mining Safety and Health Act 1999