Australian Maritime Safety Authority

Freedom of Information

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) make a range of information available for public access. You can also formally request access under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) to documents we hold.

Your rights

You can ask to see any document that we hold. We can refuse access to some documents, or parts of documents that are exempt. Exempt documents may include those relating to national security, documents containing material obtained in confidence and Cabinet documents, or other matters set out in the FOI Act.
The FOI Act gives you the right to:

  • Access copies of documents (except exempt documents) we hold.
  • Ask for information we hold about you to be changed or annotated if it is incomplete, out of date, incorrect or misleading.
  • Seek a review of our decision not to allow you access to a document or not to amend your personal record.

Documents available outside the FOI Act

You can get certain information, including personal information we hold about you, without following a formal process under the FOI Act.

information publications scheme

You should also check the information we have published under the Information Publication Scheme and FOI disclosure log to see if what you are seeking is already available.

How to make an FOI request

Your request must:

  • Be in writing
  • State that the request is an application for the purposes of the FOI Act
  • Provide information about the document(s) you wish to access so that we can process your request
  • Provide an address for reply

By post:
The Freedom of Information Officer
Australian Maritime Safety Authority
GPO Box 2181
Canberra City ACT 2601
or by email:

If you are making an FOI request on behalf of another person, you need to provide a specific, written authority from that person to send copies of documents to you or to allow you to inspect copies of documents containing information about the other person.
If you need help with your request, please email:

Fees and charges

There is no application fee for an FOI request.

There are no processing charges for requests for access to documents containing only personal information about you. However, processing charges may apply to other requests. The most common charges are:

Fees and charges for processing FOI requests

Activity item


Search and retrieval: time we spend searching for or retrieving a document

$15.00 per hour

Decision making: time we spend in deciding to grant or refuse a request, including examining documents, consulting with other parties, and making deletions

First five hours: Nil
Subsequent hours: $20 per hour

Transcript: preparing a transcript from a sound recording, shorthand or similar medium

$4.40 per page of transcript


$0.10 per page

Inspection: supervision by an agency officer of your inspection of documents or hearing or viewing an audio or visual recording at our premises

$6.25 per half hour (or part thereof)

Delivery: posting or delivering a copy of a document at your request

Cost of postage or delivery

If there is a charge, we will give you a written estimate detailing the fees. If the estimated charge is between $20 and $100 we may ask you to pay a deposit of $20. If the estimated charge exceeds $100 we may ask you to pay a 25 per cent deposit before we process your request.

You can ask for the charge to be waived or reduced for any reason, including financial hardship or on the grounds of public interest. If you do, you will need to explain why and you may need to provide some evidence.

What you can expect from us

  • We will tell you within fourteen (14) days that we have received your request and give you an estimate of the charges.
  • We will give you our decision within thirty (30) days unless that time has been extended. If a document contains information about a third party, we will need to consult them and may need to extend the time to give you our decision by another thirty (30) days.
  • We may also seek your agreement to extend the time by up to thirty (30) days if your request is complex.

If you disagree with our decision

When we have made a decision about your FOI request, we will send you a letter explaining our decision and your review and appeal rights.
You can ask for the following decisions to be reviewed:

  • If we refuse to give you access to all or part of a document or if we defer giving you access.
  • If we impose a charge.
  • If we refuse to change or annotate information about you that you claim is incomplete, incorrect, out of date or misleading.

A third party who disagrees with our decision to give you documents that contain information about them can also ask for our decision to be reviewed.

Internal review

You can request in writing that we reconsider our decision through an internal review. An internal review will be conducted by another officer in our agency. We will advise you of our new decision within thirty (30) days of receiving your request.

Information Commissioner review

You can ask the Australian Information Commissioner to review our original decision or our decision on internal review within sixty (60) days of the date of decision, or thirty (30) days after you are notified if you are an affected third party.
The Information Commissioner can affirm or vary the decision or substitute a new decision. The Information Commissioner may decide not to conduct a review in certain circumstances. More information is available from the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC).


If you are unhappy with the way we have handled your request, you can complain to the Australian Information Commissioner who may investigate our actions. More information is available from the OAIC.

The Commonwealth Ombudsman can also investigate complaints about our actions. However, the Commonwealth Ombudsman and the Information Commissioner will consult to avoid the same matter being investigated twice.

Related information

For information about the Vessel Track Data Disclosure and Dissemination Policy, please see the VT disclosure page.

For more information about making an FOI request, please email:

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