This is an HTML version of an attachment to the Freedom of Information request 'Role review processes in the Federal Court for National Judicial Registrars'.


 
 
 
 
 
 
FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA 
REGISTRY 
 
 
 
 
 
COMMONWEALTH LAW COURTS 
 
3 ANGAS STREET 
 
ADELAIDE SA 5000 
 
GPO BOX 1350 
ADELAIDE   SA  5001 
 
20 June 2022 
 
Mircea 
Right to Know 
 
By email: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx@xxxxxxxxxxx.xxx.xx  
 
Dear Mircea 
 
Request for an internal review under the Freedom of Information Act 
 
I refer to your email correspondence of 21 May 2022 (10:38PM) seeking an internal review 
of the decision made on 19 May 2022.   
 
Authorised decision-maker 
 
I am authorised to make a decision on behalf of the Federal Court of Australia (Court) in 
relation to your internal review request.  In conducting the internal review, I acknowledge 
that an internal review is a merit review process and that I am required to bring a fresh, 
independent and impartial mind to the review.   
 
Material taken into Account 
In making my decision on internal review, I have considered the following material:   
  your FOI request received on 21 March 2022 (6:17AM) (FOI request);  
  the decision letter to you dated 19 May 2022 (decision letter);  
  your request for internal review received on 21 May 2022 (10:38PM) (review 
request);  
  the documents identified by the decision letter as falling within the scope of your 
request; 
  the records of the searches conducted by Court staff; 
  the FOI request made by “Velan” dated 26 February 2022; 
  the decision letter to “Velan” dated 27 April 2022; 
  the internal review letter to “Velan” dated 27 May 2022; 
  the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Cth) (FOI Act) and relevant case law; and 

  the guidelines issued by the Australian Information Commissioner under section 93A 
of the FOI Act (FOI Guidelines).  
 
Decision on Internal Review
   
 
The decision letter states that the documents found in response to your FOI request are 
identical to the documents found in response to paragraphs (i) and (ii) of an FOI request made 
by “Velan” on 26 February 2022.  The decision maker therefore decided to adopt the 
reasoning she provided in the “Velan” decision on 27 April 2022 in relation to your FOI 
request.   
 
On 27 May 2022, I sent a decision on internal review to “Velan” stating that I took a different 
view to the original decision maker, and was of the view that the documents sought by 
“Velan” cannot be found or do not exist.      
 
Your review request clarifies the documents you seek in your FOI request.  Your FOI request 
states that you seek access to “all the documents…that were provided to Kate McMullan of 
the Australian Public Service Commission which support her conclusion…”  Your review 
request clarifies: 
 
“What does this mean?  It means that the documents I am asking for are: 
 
1.  documents that were provided to Kate McMullan; and 
2.  are evidence that “a role review process that had resulted in certain positions being found 
suitable for either a Legal 2 or (SES1) position, depending on the relative complexity and 
work load.” 
 
With this clarification, I am of the view that the decision I made on internal review in relation 
to “Velan” applies here also.  I am satisfied that all reasonable steps have been taken to find 
the documents you have requested, but the documents cannot be found or do not exist (see s 
24A(1) of the FOI Act).  I therefore refuse your request to access the documents described in 
the FOI request.   
 
Searches Conducted 
  
Prior to the decision made in relation to the FOI request by “Velan” on 27 April 2022 and the 
decision made on 19 May 2022 in relation to your FOI request, extensive searches were 
undertaken by staff of the Court to identify any documents falling within the scope of your 
request.  I have reviewed these searches and spoken to Court personnel who were involved in 
this process.  The process for undertaking the searches involved consultations with senior 
staff of the Court, searches of the Court’s human resources and recruitment inboxes, searches 
of staff emails, as well as searches of the Court’s human resources shared drive, the Court’s 
electronic documents, records management and information systems.  The searches utilised 
key words based on Court staff’s knowledge of document titling practices in the Court.  Staff 

 


engaged in extensive consultations to determine appropriate key word searches by reference 
to the description of the documents in your FOI request.   
 
I am satisfied that the searches undertaken were thorough and comprehensive.  I do not 
believe any further reasonable search or enquiry could find the documents you seek access to.  
I am satisfied that no documents exist or they cannot be found.   
 
Your review rights 
If you are dissatisfied with my decision, under section 54L of the FOI Act you may apply to 
the Australian Information Commissioner for review.  An application for review by the 
Information Commissioner must be made in writing within 60 days of the date of this letter.  
 
More information about Information Commissioner review is available on the Office of the 
Australian Information Commissioner website. Go to Information Commissioner review - 
Home (oaic.gov.au) 
 
Complaints 
 
If you are dissatisfied with the way the Court has handled your FOI request, you may 
complain to the Information Commissioner in writing.  There is no fee for making a 
complaint.   
 
More information about making a complaint is available on the OAIC website, including a 
link to the online complaints form which the OAIC recommends using for complaints.  Go to 
Make an FOI complaint - Home (oaic.gov.au)  
 
Yours sincerely 
 
 
 
Nicola Colbran 
National Judicial Registrar & 
District Registrar