RFY and Medical Board of Queensland
(210139, 28 April 2008)
The applicant applied to the Medical Board of Queensland (Board) for documents relating to proceedings in which she was involved with the Board in the Queensland Anti-Discrimination Commission (ADCQ) and Anti-Discrimination Tribunal (ADT).
The Board released various documents to the applicant in response to her freedom of information (FOI) application. In relation to certain matter and documents, the Board refused access on the basis of section 27(3), section 29B, section 43(1) and section 45(1)(c) of the FOI Act.
On external review, Assistant Commissioner (AC) Henry agreed with the majority of the Board’s findings with respect to the documents in issue but formed the view that certain matter in issue in Board meeting minutes was not exempt from disclosure under section 43(1) or section 45(1)(c) of the FOI Act. The Board did not accept that view.
Section 43(1) – legal professional privilege
AC Henry found that the matter in issue in the Board meeting minutes, was not exempt from disclosure under section 43(1) of the FOI Act. That finding was based on the fact that the matter in issue:
· referred to the existence of privileged documents but did not disclose the nature of content of those documents
· did not constitute a confidential communication between a lawyer and a client
· was not prepared for the dominant purpose of seeking or giving legal advice
· was not prepared for the dominant purpose of use in current or anticipated legal proceedings.
Section 45(1)(c) – business, professional, commercial or financial affairs
With respect to the Board’s alternative exemption claim under section 45(1)(c) of the FOI Act, AC Henry found that the matter in issue was not exempt from disclosure under that provision because:
· it does not concern the business, professional, commercial or financial affairs of the Board or another person
its disclosure could not reasonably be expected to have an adverse effect on the business, professional, commercial or financial affairs of the Board or another person.