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Applications & refusals


The Act will apply to Institute information that was created up to 10 years before commencement of the Act, and to personal information created at any time.

After two years of operation of the Act, it will be possible for individuals to access information that was created or received more than 10 years before the commencement of the Act.

Under the Act the Institute is encouraged to provide as much Institute information as possible to the public, within the requirements of the Act.


The institute can refuse applications for access to Institute and personal information, and applications to correct personal information, where:

  • The information falls under one of the public interest exemptions identified in Part 4 of the Act
  • Providing access would unreasonably interfere with the operations of the public sector organisation.


Where the release of information is prohibited by another Act, it is automatically exempt from disclosure. A three (3) year sunset period applies for this exemption.

Cabinet and Executive Council information, security and law enforcement information, and privacy and cultural information can be excluded as categories of information that are often not in the public interest to release.

Other exemptions may be granted in particular cases if they pass the harm tests outlined in the Act. For example, if disclosure would prejudice specified interests such as police investigations, the right of a person to a fair trial, or intergovernmental relations. In other cases, information only falls within the exemption provisions if its disclosure would have a substantial adverse effect on other specified interests, such as the management of the Institute or the financial or property interests of the Institute.

In addition, Institute commercial undertakings are protected where they might be exposed unreasonably to disadvantage by exercise of rights under this Act.

The Chief Minister is the only person able to issue an exemption certificate. Exemption certificates are valid for up two years and are renewable.


The following forms are downloadable in word format (please check your download folder after selecting each to automatically download).