Complaints Guide

​​Complaints about the Office of Racing Integrity or its Decisions

The Office of Racing Integrity (ORI) values feedback from participants and has processes that allow you to lodge a complaint. The Racing Regulation Act 2004 (the RR Act) also provides that some decisions are legally reviewable.  These processes are outlined in this page.​

Complaints about ORI staff

ORI manages complaints about its staff:

  • In accordance with the Department of Natural Resources and Environment Tasmania (NRE Tas) External Complaints Handling Policy

  • In the case of the staff member being appointed under the State Service Act 2000 (the SSA), in accordance with relevant Employment Directions and other requirements of the SSA.

  • ​In the case of staff appointed under the RR Act , in accordance with the Code of Conduct applicable to the staff member under their contract of employment​.

If you disagree with a decision

The Racing Regulation Act 2004 specifies that certain decisions are legally appealable. These include:

  • against a decision of Tasracing Pty Ltd or a registered club to issue a person with a warning-off notice;
  • against a decision of stewards to impose a fine, suspension or disqualification;
  • ​against a decision of the Director of Racing to impose certain licence conditions; 
  • if a person is in dispute with a bookmaker with regard to a betting dispute.

Section 28 and 28A of the Act provides further details of appealable decisions.

If you are not happy with a decision about one of these things, you can lodge an appeal with the Tasmanian Racing Appeal Board (TRAB)​. Noting that there are timeframes within which an appeal must be lodged.

Not every decision that stewards and/or the Director of Racing (the Director) may make is classed as appealable under the Act. 

What is the difference between a complaint, an internal review, and an appeal?

A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction and/or an allegation of professional misconduct.

An internal review (which may be instigated by a complaint) is an action by the Director to determine the circumstances of an incident. It may be that a decision cannot be changed under the Rules of Racing, but the Director can take actions to continually improve ORI operations.

An appeal is a statutory mechanism, independent of ORI, with strict protocols for assessing and adjudicating on matters as provided by the Racing Regulation Act 2004.  There are legislated timeframes for lodging an appeal.

Which one should I choose?

This is a matter for you to determine, based on the outcome you are seeking.

If the matter is potentially appealable under the Act, and you are unsure of your rights, you should seek independent advice. ORI is not able to provide you with legal advice. 

If you are dissatisfied with a steward decision and the decision is not appealable you may seek an internal review by the Director.

Matters relating to the conduct of ORI staff or stewards may be referred to the Director or the Secretary of NRE Tasmania. 

How do I make a complaint?

If you wish to complain about a decision of the stewards or the Office of Racing Integrity, you can complete a submission using the ORI Complaints Portal. 

If you wish to complain about the conduct of a member of ORI staff (including stewards) you can make a complaint to the Director or to NRE Tas through the External Complaints process​​.

What if my complaint relates to an animal welfare matter?

If your complaint relates to animal welfare you can complete a submission using the ORI Complaints Portal.

You may also lodge your complaint with the RSPCA Tasmania. To lodge a complaint, use any of the following methods:

How do I request an internal review?

If you wish to request an internal review, you can contact the Director of Racing by emailing​

How do I lodge an appeal?

More information about how to lodge an appeal with the TRAB can be on the Tasmania Racing Appeal Board webpage​

What happens once your complaint or request for internal review is lodged?

When the Director receives a complaint or internal review request, the complaint will be assessed to decide what action needs to be taken. Depending on the issues raised, the Director may:

  • Refer the matter to another, more relevant regulator or body for consideration; 

  • ​Refer the information to Stewards to consider in relation to their powers and functions under the Rules of Racing;

  • Commence an investigation or inquiry into the matters raised;

  • Take no action, and file the information as intelligence only.

When will I hear back?

In line with the NRE Tas External Complaints process, the following timeframes are applied dependent upon the nature of the issue raised.

  • Minor: matters that are general in nature, that do not have serious consequences – within 5 business days

  • Moderate: matters that have a degree of complexity and that may have moderate to serious consequences – within 15 to 30 business days

  • Major: matters that are complex, involving one or more Divisions or other Departments, that may have a significant consequence – 45 to 60 business days. ​

Will I be updated on the progress of a complaint?

If a complaint is submitted anonymously, you will not receive any confirmation or further updates about the information you submit.

In certain matters the Director will be able to advise of the progress of complaint, however, in matters that are subject to investigation, formal inquiry or other sensitive processes, ORI may not be able to lawfully provide updates.

When a complaint or internal review is finalised

Once the Director has completed a review or an investigation of a complaint, the Director may take the following action(s):

  • ​Providing information clarifying any misunderstanding regarding the role of ORI

  • Offer an apology

  • Counselling a staff member

  • Refer the matter to the Secretary NRE Tas to consider if disciplinary processes should be instituted in accordance with relevant policies and procedures

  • Making changes to ORI’s systems, processes or procedures

  • Referring the matter to another agency or regulator

  • Suggesting that you contact the Integrity Commission or Ombudsman

  • Take no further action.

What if I am not happy with the outcome of complaint or internal review?

If you are provided with a formal outcome and are unsatisfied or wish to raise a complaint regarding ORI’s handling of the complaint or review, then you will be advised to contact the Integrity Commission or Ombudsman.

Other important information

Note that ORI, as part of the Department of Natural Resources and Environment Tasmania, is bound by and/or subject to the following legislation and policies:

  • ​Personal Information Protection Act 2004

  • NRE Tas Personal Information Protection Policy

  • Right to Information Act 2009

  • Public Interest Disclosures Act 2002

  • Integrity Commission Act 2002

  • State Service Act 2000

  • Employment Directions

  • NRE Tas Issues Resolution Policy

  • Racing Regulation Act 2004

  • NRE Tas Compliance and Enforcement Policy

Information on who to complain to and how can be found in the Avenue for Complaint​ document