Defence and veteran groups have welcomed the terms of reference of a royal commission into suicides in the military.
But some felt dejected that a good-faith request to have one of the three commissioners be someone with demonstrated understanding of veterans was rejected.
The commission will be led by former senior police officer and weapons inspector Nick Kaldas.
Former Queensland Supreme Court judge James Douglas and Peggy Brown, a psychiatrist and national mental health policy leader, will assist Mr Kaldas.
Graham Walker, spokesperson for the Vietnam Veterans' Federation of Australia said it was disappointing that the government had chosen to outright reject their request.
The group put forward I Was Only 19 singer John Schumann, who spent years working with veterans organisations who also had experience senior public sector roles.
Mr Walker said federation was certain the commissioners were capable, honest and would do a good job, but they were not known to veterans.
"We think there's a great opportunity lost here for the kind of trust the veteran community needs to have," Mr Walker said.
"We trust their integrity, but we have concerns that not one of them has that intimate knowledge of veterans we would have hoped for."
He said they were also concerned that it appeared veterans had once again not been listened to.
RSL national president Greg Melick said the upcoming inquiry had been a long time coming.
"It's going to be a completely and fairly exhaustive consideration of issues we've wanted dealt with for years," he said.
Australian Defence Association executive director Neil James is also satisfied with the terms of reference.
"Many people thought they'd weasel out of this by rigging the terms of reference and they appear not to have weaselled out of it, probably because of the public outrage that would cause," he said.
Mr James is pleased the royal commission will investigate the role played by the defence and veterans' affairs departments.
"There are too many laws, they are too complex and their administration is too bureaucratic," he said.
"Hopefully the royal commission will suggest clear changes to fix that problem."
Mr Melick wants the inquiry to look at more than just interactions between Australian Defence Force personnel and government departments.
He warned people engaged with the inquiry would need assistance and said the RSL stood ready to help.
"The royal commission's going to stir up a lot of memories for a lot of people."
An in-depth analysis of systemic risk factors leading to serving and returned personnel taking their own lives will form a key part of the probe.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison released the terms of reference for the inquiry.
"The death of any Australian Defence Force member or veteran is a terrible tragedy that is deeply felt by all Australia but particularly those who served alongside them and their families," he said.
The commission will look at common themes relating to veteran suicide including the potential impact of pre-service, service, transition, separation and post-service issues.
The probe will be able to inquire into any previous suspected suicide.
The royal commission is due to provide an interim report on August 11, 2022, and a final report on June 15 the following year.
Labor welcomed the news, an early backers of a royal commission.
"It is encouraging that the investigation will enquire into systemic issues related to defence and veteran suicides, including the possible contribution of pre-service, transition, separation and post-service issues," Labor leader Anthony Albanese said in a statement with Defence spokesperson Brendan O'Connor and Veterans' Affairs spokesperson Shayne Neumann.
"It is concerning, however, that the government wants to retain its flawed National Commissioner for Defence and Veteran Suicide Prevention alongside the Royal Commission while the National Commissioner legislation is stalled in the Senate."
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The inquiry has been delayed by the Prime Minister's overseas travel and a Nationals leadership spill, which saw Darren Chester dumped as veterans' affairs minister and replaced by Andrew Gee.
The inquiry will examine all aspects of service and the experience of those who transition to civilian life.
It will look at the availability and quality of health and support services as well as issues facing ADF members and veterans including family breakdowns, housing and employment.
Private sessions will be available.