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If you decide to use or rely on the information or make decisions based on the information in this website (which VLA does not recommend) VLA is not liable to you or any third party in any way for any loss, damage, costs or expenses you or they may suffer or incur as a result.

Disclosure of information provided

Information about who is allowed to see information provided under a location order.

  • The law changed on 6 May 2024
  • This content will be updated as soon as is possible

In the interim please consult the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia website or the Victoria Legal Aid Website.

Going to court

After the application is filed at court, a date will be set down for the hearing. The applicant will need to be prepared to explain why they are seeking a Commonwealth information order. They should be prepared. The judge will read the documents filed and may ask questions.

The applicant should arrive at court at least 30 minutes before their hearing is due to commence. They should tell the court clerk that they are appearing without a lawyer.

If the judge makes a decision in favour of the applicant, the applicant will have to arrange with the clerk to get a stamped copy of the order. They will then have to scan a copy and email it to Centrelink. The address is subpoena@servicesaustralia.gov.au.

Disclosure of the information

The Government department or employer or other entity who is ordered to provide information must provide the information requested to the Registrar of the court that made the order.

It must not be disclosed to the applicant.

If the court gives permission the information may be disclosed to the applicant's lawyer or to a process server who has been engaged by that lawyer.

Anyone who discloses information to other parties may be fined up to 120 penalty units.

More information

Legislation

Family Law Act 1975 (Cth)

  • s. 67P—information must only be disclosed to particular persons

See Family Law Act 1975 (Cth)(opens in a new window).

References

VLA Professional support

The Professional support team have developed a toolkit to step through the process of getting information from Centrelink to help find the other parent and children.

See Practice resources—Family law resources—Getting information from Centrelink to help locate your child and the other parent(opens in a new window).

For examples of affidavits and other support documents, see also Practice resources—Family law resources—Commonwealth information order kit attachments (opens in a new window)


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Value of one Commonwealth penalty unit

The penalty scales under Commonwealth law are different to those under Victorian law. Commonwealth penalty scales are explained in the Crimes Act 1914. The current rate is $222.

This only applies to offences committed after 30 June 2020.

See:

This amount is indexed

This amount is indexed and so increases from time to time to retain the real value of the penalty. Immediately before 1 July 2020, the penalty amount was $210.

Updated