The Office has complaint handling responsibilities under the Privacy Act 1988. Individuals can complain if they believe their privacy has been interfered with by an Australian or ACT government agency, or a private sector organisation covered by the Act. The information in this section tells you how to make a complaint, and explains the complaints process generally.
A few important things you should know about the complaints process:
- It is free.
- You do not need a lawyer. However if you do decide to hire a lawyer, you must pay for the lawyer yourself.
- This Office investigates privacy complaints from individuals about Australian and ACT government agencies, and private sector organisations covered by the Act. The Act does not cover State and Northern Territory government agencies.
- The Office aims to resolve complaints as quickly as possible. Some complaints are resolved within weeks, but more complex complaints may take longer. The Office aims to resolve all complaints within 12 months. You can find more information about what you can expect in our Client Service Charter.
- There are no fines set out in the Act. Complaints are generally resolved through conciliation.
- You can choose to withdraw your complaint at any time.