National Security Information Act 2004
A structure for courts to follow where national security information is disclosed in a legal proceeding
Sometimes, parties to a legal proceeding may need to use information classed as national security information.
The National Security Information (Criminal and Civil Proceedings) Act 2004 (NSI Act) gives courts a structure to follow where this information is disclosed, or is to be disclosed, in a legal proceeding.
The NSI Act can be used in both federal criminal proceedings and civil proceedings.
The Act aims to strike a balance between the interests of national security and the administration of justice.
Mechanisms in the Act include
- closed hearings
- storage and handling requirements
- security clearances for legal representatives
It also allows parties to agree to arrangements about the disclosure of national security information. The Practitioners’ Guide to the NSI Act gives step-by-step advice on the procedures in the NSI Act.