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Internal reviews

If a person is aggrieved by a decision or action of the Department for Child Protection (DCP), the initial step should be to explore whether the matter can be resolved directly with the office concerned. Complaints may also be resolved through the DCP Complaints Unit.

Requesting an internal review

Under the Children and Young People (Safety) Act 2017, a person who is aggrieved by a decision of DCP made under Chapter 7 of the Act (other than a decision under Part 4 of that Chapter) can also request that the department carry out a review of that decision.

A request for a review must be made within 30 days of receiving the decision, or such longer time as DCP may allow.

A staff member who was not involved in the decision will carry out the review and may want to talk to you directly as part of the process.

Once a review has been carried out, the reviewer may confirm, vary or set aside and replace the earlier decision. 

You will be informed of the outcome as soon as possible.

How to request a review of a decision

A request for review may be made by completing the Application for Internal Review form (Word, 68KB) and:

  • lodging the form in person at one of our DCP offices
  • posting the form by mail to:

Manager, Complaints Unit
Department of Child Protection
GPO Box 1072
Adelaide SA 5001

  • emailing the form to the DECDFamilies [at] sa.gov.au (DCP Complaints Unit).

If you need assistance completing this form you can call the Complaints Unit on 1800 003 305. *1800 calls are free from fixed lines, calls from mobiles may be charged by your provider.

What if you are still dissatisfied after DCP’s review of the decision?

If you are dissatisfied with the internal review undertaken by DCP, in some cases you may make an application to the South Australian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (SACAT) for external review.

Matters cannot proceed to SACAT unless an internal review has been conducted by DCP.

For information about applying for a SACAT review, visit the SACAT website  or call 1800 723 767.

Complaints may also be addressed to Ombudsman SA or the Health and Community Services Complaints Commissioner.


Central Complaints Unit

Telephone: 1800 003 305

Department for Child Protection
GPO Box 1072
Adelaide SA 5001