55 Information as to existence of particular documents

(1) Nothing in this Act requires an agency or Minister to give information as to the existence or non-existence of a document containing prescribed information.

(2) For an access application for a document containing prescribed information, the agency or Minister may give a prescribed written notice that does not include the details mentioned in section 191(a) or (b) but, by way of a decision, states that—

(a) the agency or Minister neither confirms nor denies the existence of that type of document as a document of the agency or a document of the Minister; but

(b) assuming the existence of the document, it would be a document to which access would be refused under section 47(3) to the extent it comprised prescribed information.

(3) The prescribed written notice may be given in a schedule of relevant documents.

(4) To avoid any doubt, it is declared that a decision that states the matters mentioned in subsection (2) is a decision refusing access to a document under section 47.


A decision refusing access to a document under section 47 is a reviewable decision—see schedule 5, definition reviewable decision, paragraph (e).