RCD and Department of Child Safety
(210498, 21 January 2009)
Section 44(1) Matter affecting personal affairs
The applicant sought access to the name of his putative grandfather recorded in a document held by the Department of Child Safety about the birth of the applicant’s father.
Applying settled principles, Assistant Commissioner Henry decided that the information concerned the personal affairs of a person other than the applicant and was prima facie exempt under section 44(1) of the Freedom of Information Act 1992, subject to the public interest balancing test.
In this instance, the public interest considerations favouring disclosure of the information to the applicant were not sufficient to outweigh the strong privacy interest of the putative grandfather, particularly as the putative grandfather had not acknowledged paternity and the mother of the applicant’s father was the only source of information, which could not be verified as accurate.