This content is current only at the time of printing. This document was printed on 21 February 2017. A current copy is located at http://apvma.gov.au/node/268
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Notices to attend, give information or produce documents or things
The APVMA can issue a notice to require a person to appear before an inspector to answer questions, or give an inspector information, a document or a thing if we have reasonable grounds to believe that they have information, a document or a thing relevant to the administration or enforcement of the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals Code scheduled to the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals Code Act 1994 (the Agvet Code).
We issue these notices via registered post or through the engagement of a process server.
What are these notices and what legislation do they relate to?
Notices to attend, give information or produce documents or things are written documents issued under section 130 of the Agvet Code. They will require you to do one or more of the following:
- give information specified in the notice
- produce any document or thing
- appear before a specified inspector to answer questions.
Under section 130 of the Agvet Code, the APVMA has certain obligations:
- we must serve you with the notice
- the notice must be signed by the APVMA Chief Executive Officer
- the notice must specify a timeframe with which you must comply
- if the notice requests that you attend in person, it must include the location and advise that you may be accompanied by a lawyer
- the notice must also explain the consequences of noncompliance under section 130B of the Agvet Code.
Under section 130B of the Agvet Code a person commits an offence if the person fails to comply with a notice issued in accordance with section 130 of the Agvet Code. The penalty for each offence is 30 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months or both.
Can the notice be withdrawn?
We can withdraw a notice at our discretion. We may decide to do so if we receive additional information that resolves our concerns.
What happens if you provide false or misleading information?
It is an offence to provide false or misleading information in response to a notice to attend, give information and produce documents or things.
Will the notice be published or disclosed?
In accordance with the principle of transparency outlined in the APVMA’s Compliance and Enforcement Policy, every enforcement matter that is dealt with through litigation or formal resolution is made public. In accordance with this principle, the APVMA’s maintains a register on its website and may use the register to list details of enforcement matters.
While we do not usually publish the details of notices to attend, give information or produce documents or things, we may do so if it is in the public interest or for the purposes of law enforcement. A court is able to compel us to disclose the information we hold.
We do not disclose confidential commercial information or private information
The APVMA may publish statistics about the issue of notices to attend, give information or produce documents or things.
The APVMA considers that publishing information about enforcement matters provides for a broader educative and deterrent effect.