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SR 1983 No. 84 Regulations as made
Principal Regulations
Tabling HistoryDate
Tabled HR23-Aug-1983
Tabled Senate23-Aug-1983
Gazetted 29 Jun 1983
Date of repeal 23 Dec 1994
Repealed by Freedom of Information (Document Review Tribunal) Regulations (Repeal)

1983 No. 84*1* FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (DOCUMENT REVIEW TRIBUNAL) REGULATIONS

*1* Notified in the Commonwealth of Australia Gazette on 29 June 1983.

1983 No. 84 FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (DOCUMENT REVIEW TRIBUNAL) REGULATIONS -
SECT. 1.
Citation

1. These Regulations may be cited as the Freedom of Information (Document Review Tribunal) Regulations.


1983 No. 84 FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (DOCUMENT REVIEW TRIBUNAL) REGULATIONS -
SECT. 2.
Interpretation

2. In these Regulations, unless the contrary intention appears-
"Deputy Registrar" means a Deputy Registrar of the Document Review Tribunal;
"President" means the President of the Document Review Tribunal;
"Registrar" means the Registrar of the Document Review Tribunal;
"the Act" means the Freedom of Information Act 1982.


1983 No. 84 FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (DOCUMENT REVIEW TRIBUNAL) REGULATIONS -
SECT. 3.
Application of Administrative Appeals Tribunal Act to proceeding before
Document Review Tribunal

3. (1) Subject to sub-regulation (2), the provisions of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal Act 1975 specified in section 85 of the Act apply to and in relation to a proceeding before the Document Review Tribunal.


(2) For the purposes of the application of the provisions of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal Act 1975 by virtue of sub-regulation (1), those provisions shall be taken to be in the terms set out in Schedule 1 and those provisions are, in that application, modified accordingly.


1983 No. 84 FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (DOCUMENT REVIEW TRIBUNAL) REGULATIONS -
SECT. 4.
Seal of the Tribunal

4. (1) The seal of the Document Review Tribunal shall be of a design approved by the President and shall include-
(a) the Coat of Arms of the Commonwealth of Australia, that is to say, the armorial ensigns and supporters granted to the Commonwealth by Royal Warrant dated 19 September 1912; and
(b) the words "Document Review Tribunal".


(2) There shall be kept at each Registry, in such custody as the President directs, a seal of the Tribunal, and any of those seals may be used as the seal of the Tribunal.


(3) The seal of the Tribunal shall be affixed by or with the authority of the Tribunal to such documents as are required by a direction of the President to be sealed with the seal of the Tribunal.


1983 No. 84 FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (DOCUMENT REVIEW TRIBUNAL) REGULATIONS -
SECT. 5.
Hours of Registrar's office

5. (1) Subject to sub-regulation (2), the office of the Registrar and each Deputy Registrar shall be open for business on every day, other than a Saturday, a Sunday or a day that is observed as a holiday in the Australian Public Service by virtue of section 76 of the Public Service Act 1922 in the place where the office is situated, from 9.30 o'clock in the morning until 1.00 o'clock in the afternoon and from 2.00 o'clock in the afternoon until 4.00 o'clock in the afternoon.


(2) The President may direct that an office referred to in sub-regulation (1) shall be open for business at times other than those referred to in that sub-regulation, and that office shall be open for business at those times.


(3) A direction by the President under sub-regulation (2) may be expressed to apply-
(a) generally; or
(b) to a period specified in the direction.


1983 No. 84 FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (DOCUMENT REVIEW TRIBUNAL) REGULATIONS -
SECT. 6.
Summons

6. A summons under sub-section 40 (1A) of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal Act 1975, in its application to a proceeding before the Document Review Tribunal-
(a) shall be in accordance with the form in Schedule 2; and
(b) shall be served on a person by-
(i) delivering a copy of the summons to the person personally; and
(ii) showing the original of the summons to the person at the time at which the copy is delivered to him.


1983 No. 84 FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (DOCUMENT REVIEW TRIBUNAL) REGULATIONS -
SECT. 7.
Witnesses expenses

7. A person summoned to appear as a witness before the Document Review Tribunal shall be paid such fees, and allowances for expenses, in respect of his attendance, in accordance with the scale in Schedule 2 to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal Regulations as in force from time to time, as determined by the President.


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1983 No. 84 FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (DOCUMENT REVIEW TRIBUNAL) REGULATIONS -
SCHEDULE 1

SCH

SCHEDULE 1
Regulation 3 Representation before Tribunal

32. At the hearing of a proceeding before the Document Review Tribunal, a
party to the proceeding may appear in person or may be represented by some other person.


Procedure of Tribunal

33. (1) In a proceeding before the Document Review Tribunal-

(a) the procedure of the Tribunal is, subject to sections 32, 33, 35, 36,
36A, 39, 40, 42, 42A and 43 in their application to a proceeding before the
Document Review Tribunal, and to the Freedom of Information Act 1982, within the discretion of the Tribunal;

(b) the proceeding shall be conducted with as little formality and
technicality, and with as much expedition, as the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act 1982 and a proper consideration of the matters before the
Tribunal permit; and

(c) the Tribunal is not bound by the rules of evidence but may inform itself
on any matter in such manner as it thinks appropriate.


(2) For the purposes of sub-section (1), directions as to the procedure to be
followed at or in connection with the hearing of a proceeding before the
Tribunal may be given-

(a) where the hearing of the proceeding has not commenced-by the President or by a member authorized by the President to give directions for the purposes of
this paragraph; and

(b) where the hearing of the proceeding has commenced-by the member presiding at the hearing or by any other member authorized by the member presiding to give such directions.


(3) A direction as to the procedure to be followed at or in connection with
the hearing of a proceeding before the Tribunal may be varied or revoked at any
time by any member empowered in accordance with this section to give such a
direction in relation to the proceeding at that time.


(4) An authorization by the President under this section to give directions as to the procedure to be followed at or in connection with the hearing of a
proceeding may be of general application or may relate to the hearing of a
particular proceeding or particular proceedings or to proceedings included
within a class or classes of proceedings.


(5) The President may at any time vary or revoke an authorization under this
section.


Hearing of proceedings before the Tribunal

35. (1) At the hearing of a proceeding before the Document Review Tribunal in
respect of a question referred to the Tribunal in relation to a document to
which an agency or Minister has refused to grant access in accordance with a
request under the Freedom of Information Act 1982, the Tribunal-

(a) shall hold in private the hearing of any part of the proceeding during
which evidence or information is given, or a document produced, to the Tribunal
by-

(i) an agency or an officer of an agency;

(ii) a Minister or a member of the staff of a Minister; or

(iii) a member, an officer, or a member of the staff, of a body referred
to in sub-section 7 (1) of the Freedom of Information Act 1982 or the person
referred to in that sub-section,

or during which a submission is made to the Tribunal by or on behalf of an
agency or Minister, being a submission in relation to the claim-

(iv) in the case of a document in respect of which there is in force a
certificate under section 33, 34 or 35 of the Freedom of Information Act
1982-that the document is an exempt document; or

(v) in the case of a document in respect of which there is in force a
certificate under section 36 of the Freedom of Information Act 1982-that the
disclosure of the document would be contrary to the public interest; and

(b) subject to sub-section (2), may hold the hearing of any other part of the proceeding in public.


(1A) Where the hearing of any part of a proceeding before the Document Review
Tribunal is held in private in accordance with paragraph (1) (a), the Tribunal-

(a) may, by order, give directions as to the persons who may be present at
that hearing; and

(b) shall give directions prohibiting the publication of-

(i) any evidence or information given to the Tribunal;

(ii) the contents of any documents lodged with, or received in evidence
by, the Tribunal; and

(iii) any submission made to the Tribunal,

at that hearing.


(2) Where the Document Review Tribunal is satisfied that it is desirable to do so by reason of the confidential nature of any evidence, information or matter
or for any other reason, the Tribunal may, by order-

(a) in a case where the Tribunal directs that the hearing of any part of a
proceeding other than a part referred to in paragraph (1) (a) shall take place
in private, give directions as to the persons who may be present at that
hearing;

(b) give directions prohibiting or restricting the publication of-

(i) the contents of any document lodged with the Tribunal, or forwarded
to the Tribunal under section 66 of the Freedom of Information Act 1982, in
relation to a proceeding; or

(ii) any evidence or information given to the Tribunal (whether in public
or in private), the contents of any document received in evidence by the
Tribunal, or any submission made to the Tribunal, in relation to the proceeding
otherwise than at a hearing held in private in accordance with paragraph (1)
(a); or

(c) give directions prohibiting or restricting the disclosure to some or all
of the parties to a proceeding of evidence given before the Tribunal, or of the
contents of a document lodged with or forwarded to the Tribunal or received in
evidence by the Tribunal, in relation to the proceeding.


(3) The Document Review Tribunal shall exercise its powers under sub-section
(1A) or (2) in such a manner as to ensure that-

(a) exempt matter within the meaning of the Freedom of Information Act 1982
contained in a document to which the proceeding relates; or

(b) information of the kind referred to in sub-section 25 (1) of the Freedom
of Information Act 1982,

is not disclosed to the applicant.


(4) A direction given by the Document Review Tribunal at the hearing of a
proceeding, being a direction referred to in paragraph (1A) (b) or (2) (b) in
respect of the publication of any evidence, information, submission, or the
contents of any document, received by the Tribunal in relation to the
proceeding, does not prevent a person referred to in sub-paragraph (1) (a) (i),
(ii) or (iii) from disclosing, in the course of the performance of his duties,
any matter contained in that evidence, information, submission or document to
any other person.


Certain documents and information not required to be disclosed

36. (1) If the Attorney-General certifies, by writing signed by him, that the
disclosure of information concerning a specified matter, or the disclosure of
any matter contained in a document, would be contrary to the public interest-

(a) by reason that it would prejudice the security, defence or international
relations of Australia;

(b) by reason that it would involve the disclosure of deliberations or
decisions of the Cabinet or of a Committee of the Cabinet; or

(c) for any other reason specified in the certificate that could form the
basis for a claim by the Crown in right of the Commonwealth in a judicial
proceeding that the information or the matter contained in the document should
not be disclosed,

the following provisions of this section have effect.


(2) A person who is required by or under section 40 in its application to a
proceeding before the Document Review Tribunal, or by or under the Freedom of
Information Act 1982, to disclose the information or to forward or produce to,
or lodge with, the Document Review Tribunal the document in which the matter is
contained for the purposes of a proceeding is not excused from the requirement
but the Tribunal shall, subject to sub-section (3), do all things necessary to
ensure that the information or the matter contained in the document is not
disclosed to any person other than a member of the Tribunal as constituted for
the purposes of the proceeding, and, in the case of a document forwarded or
produced to or lodged with the Tribunal, to ensure the return of the document to the person by whom it was forwarded, produced or lodged.


(3) Where the Attorney-General has certified in accordance with sub-section
(1) that the disclosure of information, or of matter contained in a document,
would be contrary to the public interest but the certificate does not specify a
reason referred to in paragraph (1) (a) or (b), the Document Review Tribunal
shall consider whether the information or the matter should be disclosed to all
or any of the parties to the proceeding and, if it decides that the information
or the matter should be so disclosed, the Tribunal shall make the information
available or permit the part of the document containing the matter to be
inspected accordingly.


(4) In considering whether information or matter contained in a document
should be disclosed as mentioned in sub-section (3), the Document Review
Tribunal shall take as the basis of its consideration the principle that it is
desirable in the interest of securing the effective performance of the functions of the Tribunal that the parties to a proceeding should be made aware of all
relevant matters but shall pay due regard to any reason specified by the
Attorney-General in the certificate as a reason why the disclosure of the
information or of the matter contained in the document, as the case may be,
would be contrary to the public interest.


(4AA) Nothing in sub-section (3) or (4) shall be taken as authorizing the
Document Review Tribunal, in the performance of its duties under sub-section (3) in respect of a proceeding, to disclose, or permit the disclosure of-

(a) exempt matter within the meaning of the Freedom of Information Act 1982
contained in a document to which the proceeding relates; or

(b) information of the kind referred to in sub-section 25 (1) of the Freedom
of Information Act 1982,

to any person other than a member of the Tribunal as constituted for the
purposes of the proceeding.


(4A) Nothing in this section prevents the disclosure of information or of
matter contained in a document to a member of the staff of the Document Review
Tribunal in the course of the performance of his duties as a member of the staff of the Tribunal.


Certain questions not required to be answered

36A. (1) Where, at the hearing of a proceeding before the Document Review
Tribunal, a person is asked a question in the course of giving evidence, the
Attorney-General may inform the Tribunal that, in his opinion, the answering of
the question would be contrary to the public interest for a specified reason or
reasons, being a reason or reasons mentioned in sub-section 36 (1).


(2) Where the Attorney-General so informs the Document Review Tribunal that,
in his opinion, the answering by a person of a question would be contrary to the public interest, then-

(a) in the case where the reason specified is, or the reasons specified
include, a reason referred to in paragraph 36 (1) (a) or (b)-the person is
excused from answering the question; or

(b) in any other case-the person is excused from answering the question
unless the answering of the question would not involve the disclosure of-

(i) exempt matter within the meaning of the Freedom of Information Act
1982 contained in a document to which the proceeding relates; or

(ii) information of the kind referred to in sub-section 25 (1) of the
Freedom of Information Act 1982,

and the Tribunal decides that the answering of the question would not be
contrary to the public interest.


(4) The Attorney-General may appear before the Document Review Tribunal
personally, or may be represented before the Tribunal by a barrister, solicitor
or other person, for the purpose of informing the Tribunal of his opinion in
accordance with this section or he may inform the Tribunal of his opinion by
causing a certificate in writing signed by him setting out his opinion to be
sent to the Tribunal.


Opportunity to make submissions concerning evidence

39. Subject to sections 35, 36 and 36A in their application to a proceeding
before the Document Review Tribunal, and to sub-section 63 (2) of the Freedom of Information Act 1982 in its application to the Document Review Tribunal, the
Tribunal shall ensure that every party to a proceeding before the Tribunal is
given a reasonable opportunity to present his case and, in particular, to
inspect any documents to which the Tribunal proposes to have regard in reaching
a decision in the proceeding and to make submissions in relation to those
documents.


Powers of Tribunal

40. (1) For the purpose of reviewing a decision, the Document Review Tribunal
may-

(a) take evidence on oath or affirmation;

(b) proceed in the absence of a party who has had reasonable notice of the
proceeding; and

(c) adjourn the proceeding from time to time.


(1A) For the purposes of the hearing of a proceeding before the Document
Review Tribunal, the Registrar or a Deputy Registrar of that Tribunal shall, if
directed to do so by the President, or by another member of the Tribunal who is
to preside, or presides, at the hearing, summon a person to appear before the
Tribunal at that hearing to give evidence and to produce such documents (if any) as are referred to in the summons.


(2) The member who presides at the hearing of a proceeding before the Document Review Tribunal-

(a) may require a person appearing before the Tribunal at that hearing to
give evidence either to take an oath or to make an affirmation; and

(b) may administer an oath or affirmation to a person so appearing before the Tribunal.


(3) The oath or affirmation to be taken or made by a person for the purposes
of this section is an oath or affirmation that the answers he will give to
questions asked him will be true.


(4) A person summoned to appear before the Document Review Tribunal may
request that he be represented by counsel or a solicitor and upon such request
being made the Tribunal may allow such person to be represented.


(5) The power of the Document Review Tribunal under paragraph (1) (a) to take
evidence on oath or affirmation may be exercised on behalf of the Tribunal in
relation to a particular proceeding before the Tribunal by the member who is to
preside at the hearing of that proceeding or by another person (whether a member or not) authorized by the first-mentioned member and that power may be so
exercised within or outside Australia but the Tribunal may direct that the power is to be exercised subject to limitations specified by the Tribunal.


(6) Where a person other than the member who is to preside at the hearing of a proceeding is authorized to take evidence in relation to the proceeding in
accordance with sub-section (5)-

(a) the person has, for the purpose of taking that evidence, all the powers
of the Tribunal under sub-section (1) and all the powers under sub-section (2)
of the member who is to preside at the hearing of the proceeding; and

(b) for the purpose of the exercise of those powers by that person, this Act
has effect (except where the context otherwise requires) as if a reference to
the Tribunal or to the member who is to preside at the hearing of a proceeding
included a reference to that person.


Manner in which questions to be decided

42. (2) When the members constituting the Document Review Tribunal for the
purposes of a particular proceeding are divided in opinion as to the decision to be made on any question-

(a) if there is a majority of the one opinion-the question shall be decided
according to the opinion of the majority; or

(b) in any other case-the question shall be decided according to the opinion
of the member presiding.


Power of Tribunal to dismiss proceeding or strike out party

42A. (1) The Document Review Tribunal may, with the consent of all the parties to a proceeding before the Tribunal in respect of a question referred to the
Tribunal in relation to a document to which an agency or Minister has refused to grant access in accordance with a request under the Freedom of Information Act
1982, at any stage of the proceeding, dismiss the proceeding without deciding
the question referred to it.


(2) If a party to a proceeding before the Document Review Tribunal in respect
of a question referred to the Tribunal (not being the agency or Minister who
refused to grant access to the document in relation to which the question was
referred to the Tribunal) fails either to appear in person or to appear by a
representative at the hearing of the proceeding, being a party who has been
notified by the Tribunal that he is required to appear, the Tribunal may-

(a) where the only other party to the proceeding is the agency or Minister
who refused to grant access to the document in relation to which the question
was referred to the Tribunal-dismiss the proceeding without deciding the
question referred to it; or

(b) in any other case-direct that the person who failed to appear shall cease to be a party to the proceeding.


Review by Tribunal

43. (2) Subject to this section, to sections 35, 36 and 36A in their
application to a proceeding before the Document Review Tribunal, and to
sub-section 63 (2) of the Freedom of Information Act 1982 in its application to
a proceeding before the Document Review Tribunal, the Tribunal shall give
reasons either orally or in writing for its decision but-

(a) in a case where the Tribunal does not give reasons in writing for its
decision-

(i) a party to the proceeding may, within 28 days after the day on which
a copy of the decision of the Tribunal is served on that party, request the
Tribunal to furnish to that party a statement in writing of the reasons of the
Tribunal for its decision; and

(ii) the Tribunal shall, within 28 days after receiving the request,
furnish to that party such a statement; and

(b) in a case where the Tribunal gives in writing the reasons for its
decision, those reasons shall include-

(i) its findings on material questions of fact; and

(ii) a reference to the evidence or other material on which those findings were based.


(3) The Document Review Tribunal shall cause a copy of its decision to be
served on each party to the proceeding.


(4) Without prejudice to any other method available by law for the proof of
decisions or orders of the Document Review Tribunal, a document purporting to be a copy of such a decision or order, and to be certified by the Registrar or a
Deputy Registrar of that Tribunal to be a true copy of the decision or order,
is, in any proceeding, prima facie evidence of the decision or order.


(5) Sub-sections (3) and (4) apply in relation to reasons given in writing by
the Document Review Tribunal for its decision as they apply in relation to the
decision.


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1983 No. 84 FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (DOCUMENT REVIEW TRIBUNAL) REGULATIONS -
SCHEDULE 2

SCH

SCHEDULE 2
Regulation 5 DOCUMENT REVIEW TRIBUNAL

SUMMONS

Between
Applicant
and
Respondent
To: (name and address of witness)

YOU ARE HEREBY SUMMONED to appear before the Document Review Tribunal at
(place, time and date of hearing) and on each subsequent day of the hearing of
the above-mentioned proceeding until you are excused or released from further
attendance to give evidence (* and to produce the following documents:)

* Registrar

* Deputy Registrar

Date

* Delete where inapplicable

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