Subpoenas, warrants and other court orders to produce documents

The Health Practitioner Regulation National Law (2009) (National Law) as in force in each state and territory establishes the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme to provide for the regulation of 16 health professions for the protection of the public.

The National Law establishes the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) and National Boards for each of the 15 health professions.

The following information is to assist persons issuing or serving a subpoena, warrant or other court order (Process) on AHPRA or a National Board. Failure to comply with the following requirements may result in delays in compliance with the Process.

Reponses for all non-party Processes served on AHPRA and the National Boards are coordinated by the National Information Release Unit (NIRU).

Issuing a subpoena, warrant or court order

Each Process should be addressed to the Proper Officer, National Legal Services, Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency.

Please consider contacting the NIRU to generally discuss your request before issuing a Process. We may be able to assist you to identify and describe the type of information that we hold before a Process is issued.

You may contact us by email at: niru@ahpra.gov.au

Service

A Process can be served by:

  • Email
  • Post
  • Personal delivery

By email:

niru@ahpra.gov.au

AHPRA’s preferred method of service is by email. If you serve a Process by email, you must also send the original documents to AHPRA by post, with a cheque for conduct money attached (refer to ‘Conduct Money’ below) with the exception of warrants.

By post:

The Proper Officer
National Legal Services
AHPRA
GPO Box 9958
Capital city

Please note, if you serve a Process by post, you must also send a copy of the Process to AHPRA by email to:
niru@ahpra.gov.au

Personal delivery:

You may also choose to serve the Process and the conduct money in person at any one of AHPRA’s registered offices:

Melbourne
The Proper Officer
National Legal Services
Level 8
111 Bourke Street
Melbourne
VIC 3000

Sydney
The Proper Officer
National Legal Services
Level 51
680 George Street
Sydney
NSW 2000

Brisbane
The Proper Officer
National Legal Services
Level 4
192 Ann Street
Brisbane
QLD 4000

Adelaide
The Proper Officer
National Legal Services
Level 11
80 Grenfell Street
Adelaide
SA 5000

Perth
The Proper Officer
National Legal Services
Level 1
541 Hay Street
Subiaco
WA 6008

Canberra
The Proper Officer
National Legal Services
Ground Floor
50 Blackall Street
Barton
ACT 2600

Hobart
The Proper Officer
National Legal Services
Level 5
99 Bathurst Street
Hobart
TAS 7000

Darwin
The Proper Officer
National Legal Services
Level 5
22 Harry Chan Avenue
Darwin
NT 0800

Conduct Money

AHPRA requests that conduct money of $90.00 by way of cheque made payable to “AHPRA” is provided at the time of service of a Process. This requirement does not apply to warrants.

The payment is to cover our costs and expenses incurred for accessing, collating and producing documents. AHPRA reserves the right to seek additional costs where significant work is required to retrieve and identify the documents for production. We will notify and provide you with an estimate of costs (which may vary from the final cost) or apply to the court or tribunal for you to pay any reasonable additional costs incurred in complying with the Process.

After your Service

We my contact you to confirm receipt of the Process and to obtain further information on the forensic purpose of your request.

Timeframe

AHPRA requires a reasonable timeframe of at least 2 (two) weeks to respond to a straightforward request under a Process. However, we may seek an extension of the period for compliance if:

  • The Process involves a large volume of documents
  • Documents are held in archives
  • Documents contain sensitive material which must be reviewed before release

Document schedule

A Process must clearly identify the scope of the documents to be produced to the court or tribunal. Where possible the Process should specify a date period for documents and identify the individual’s full name, aliases and date of birth.

We will conduct searches on our readily available records and databases. If materials are to be recalled from electronic or hard copy archives, we will prepare an estimate of the likely time and cost necessary to complete the search.

Please note that AHPRA and the National Boards do not hold details of registered health practitioners’ indemnity insurers.

Objections

AHPRA may apply to the court or tribunal to set aside a Process in whole or in part where, for example, the Process is oppressive or unduly burdensome or where it calls for sensitive material that should be protected from disclosure.

We will only object to a Process as a last resort and will, where practicable, first seek to negotiate with the issuing party.

 
 
Page reviewed 14/12/2018