Commonwealth Consolidated Acts

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MIGRATION ACT 1958 - SECT 501L

Disclosure of information to the Minister

             (1)  The Minister may, by written notice, require the head of an agency of a State or Territory to disclose to the Minister personal information that:

                     (a)  is of a kind specified in the notice; and

                     (b)  relates to a person, or to a person included in a class of persons, specified in the notice.

             (2)  The Minister must not give a notice under subsection (1) to the head of an agency of a State or Territory unless the Minister reasonably believes:

                     (a)  that the head of the agency has, or can reasonably acquire, the information; and

                     (b)  the information is relevant for the purposes of considering whether:

                              (i)  a person satisfies the Minister that the person passes the character test (as defined in section 501); or

                             (ii)  the Minister reasonably suspects, or is satisfied, that a person does not pass the character test.

             (3)  The head of an agency of a State or Territory who is given a notice under subsection (1) must, as soon as practicable after the notice is given, comply with the notice to the extent that he or she has, or can reasonably acquire, the information specified in the notice.

             (4)  Despite subsection (3), the registrar (however described) of a court of a State or Territory is not required to comply with a notice under subsection (1) to the extent that the information specified in the notice, in relation to a person specified in the notice, is information that relates to proceedings that have not been finally determined by the court.

             (5)  The head of an agency of a State or Territory is not excused from complying with a notice under subsection (1) on the ground that disclosing the information specified in the notice would contravene a law of the Commonwealth, a State or a Territory that:

                     (a)  primarily relates to the protection of the privacy of individuals; and

                     (b)  prohibits or regulates the use or disclosure of personal information.

Immunity from suit

             (6)  A person is not liable to:

                     (a)  any proceedings for contravening a provision of a law referred to in subsection (5); or

                     (b)  civil proceedings for loss, damage or injury of any kind suffered by another person;

merely because the person gives information to the Minister for the purposes of ensuring that the head of an agency of a State or Territory complies with a notice under subsection (1).

             (7)  In this section:

"agency " of a State or Territory includes the following:

                     (a)  the Crown in right of a State or Territory;

                     (b)  a Minister of a State or Territory;

                     (c)  a State or Territory government department;

                     (d)  an instrumentality of a State or Territory, including a body corporate established for a public purpose by or under a law of a State or Territory;

                     (e)  a company in which a controlling interest is held by any one of the following persons, or by 2 or more of the following persons together:

                              (i)  the Crown in right of a State or Territory;

                             (ii)  a person or body covered by paragraph (b) or (d);

                      (f)  a State or Territory court;

                     (g)  a State or Territory tribunal;

                     (h)  a State or Territory parole board.

"head " of an agency means:

                     (a)  if the agency is a State or Territory court--the registrar (however described) of the court; or

                     (b)  otherwise--the principal officer (however described) of the agency.



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