This document outlines the procedures followed with regard to the collection, management and disclosure of information held by the Children’s Court of Victoria (the Court) under provisions of the Children, Youth and Families Act 2005, the Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014 (the Act), the Victorian Information Privacy Principles (IPP’s) and all other relevant legislation which relates to or confers jurisdiction on the Court.
The Children’s Court has implemented technology and security policies, rules and measures to protect the personal information that it has under its control from unauthorised access, improper use, alteration, unlawful or accidental destruction and accidental loss. The Court will remove personal information from its systems where it is no longer relevant to the business of the Court unless otherwise required by legislation, regulations or rules.
Exemption – Section 10 of the Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014
The Court is generally exempt from the requirements of the Act and the IPP’s. Nothing in the Act applies to the Court in respect of collection, holding, management, use, disclosure or transfer of personal information which relates to the judicial or quasi-judicial functions of the President, a magistrate or registrar of the Court.
In addition, nothing in the Act applies to any registry or office of the Court and the staff of that registry or office, with respect to collection, holding, management, use, disclosure or transfer of personal information which relates to or supports the judicial or quasi-judicial functions of the Court.
The exemption does not apply to administrative activities undertaken by court staff which do not relate to or support the Court’s judicial or quasi-judicial functions. Examples of administrative activities include but are not limited to the Court’s human resources and recruitment functions. This means that the Court must comply with the Act and the IPP’s when recruiting to fill a vacancy or when managing the personal information of staff.
Access to the Register
The Principal Registrar maintains and has custody of the Children’s Court register under section 537 of the Children, Youth and Families Act 2005.
Access by Parties
Parties to a proceeding and their legal representatives may physically inspect the part of the register which relates to that proceeding.
Access by Non-Parties
Non-parties may, subject to the approval of the President or a magistrate and upon payment of the prescribed fee, physically inspect the part of the register which contains the final order of the Court in that proceeding.
Generally speaking, information contained within the register will not be provided or transmitted to any person, agency or organisation by telephone, email, mail or by any other means unless required or authorised by legislation, regulations or rules. Law enforcement agencies, other courts and tribunals and relevant State and Commonwealth Government agencies and departments may be provided with information contained in the register where required and/or authorised.
These access provisions apply to all proceedings in the Court.
Access to Court Files
Access to court files will not be provided in any circumstances unless so ordered by the President or a magistrate
Management of Non-exempt Information
The Court is committed to compliance with the 10 Information Privacy Principles (IPP’s) where its exemption under section 10 of the Act does not apply.
The Court’s compliance activities in this context are set out below.
Principle 1 – Collection
The Court will only collect personal information where it is necessary for one or more of its functions and activities.
Principle 2 – Use & Disclosure
The Court will not disclose personal information unless by consent, except in circumstances where disclosure is required or authorised by legislation, regulations or rules.
Principle 3 – Data Quality
The Court will make all reasonable efforts to ensure that the personal information it collects is complete, accurate and current.
Principle 4 – Data Security
The Court will take all reasonable steps to protect personal information from misuse, loss, unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.
Principle 5 – Openness
This Privacy Statement will be made available to any person on request and is published on the Court’s website.
Principle 6 – Access and Correction
The Court acknowledges a person’s right to seek access to personal information held by the Court and to seek reasonable corrections to that information if necessary.
Principle 7 – Unique Identifiers
A unique identifier is usually a number assigned to an individual in order to identify the person for the purpose of an organisation's activities. The Court will only assign a unique identifier when it is necessary to enable it to effectively carry out a relevant business activity.
Principle 8 – Anonymity
The Court gives individuals the option of not identifying themselves when entering into a transaction if such an option is lawful, reasonable and feasible in the circumstances.
Principle 9 – Transborder Data Flows
Personal information will only be transferred out of Victoria if the recipient protects privacy under standards similar to the Victorian IPP’s.
Principle 10 – Sensitive Information
The Court does not collect sensitive information without consent.
The Court will only record an email address if an email is sent requesting information. It will only be used for the purpose for which it is provided and will not be added to a mailing list. The Court will not use an email address for any other purpose or disclose it without consent, other than as specifically provided for in privacy legislation.
Website and webspaces
The court may collect personal information through its website or webspaces, such as:
- your name, email address, telephone number, IP address and other contact information;
- the content of any online application, enquiry, submission, complaint or electronic communication that you send us; and
- any registration information you provide to access any of the courts online services.
The court will not use or disclose any personal information that it collects through its website or webspaces, unless that use or disclosure is required or authorised by legislation, regulations or rules.
Cookies are data sent by a website and stored in a user's computer. The cookie is recognised by the website each time the user visits the website. A cookie can contain data such as the parts of a website a user has visited or the duration of the user's visit to the website.
It is recommended that users set their browser to identify the presence of cookies and to give them the option of accepting or rejecting them.