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Telecommunications and Other Legislation Amendment (Assistance and Access) Act 2018 (Cth)

The submission to the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security’s inquiry into the Telecommunications and Other Legislation Amendment (Assistance and Access) Act 2018 (Cth) (the Assistance and Access Act) was prepared by the Law Council. 

This submission provides comment on the amendments sought to be introduced by the Telecommunications and Other Legislation Amendment (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill 2019 (the Miscellaneous Amendments Bill), as well as the amendments to the Miscellaneous Amendments Bill introduced by the Opposition.

The Law Council notes that while the amendments proposed by the Miscellaneous Amendments Bill would be an improvement to the changes to the Telecommunications Act as introduced by the Assistance and Access Act, the amendments do not address all of the matters raised in the Law Council’s submission to the Committee dated 23 January 2019 (preliminary submission).

In particular, the amendments to the Telecommunications and Other Legislation Amendment (Assistance and Access) Bill 2018 (Cth) (the Assistance and Access Bill) introduced in the Senate in December 2018, but never passed, included an amendment to introduce judicial oversight of the issuance of notices under Part 15 of the Telecommunications Act 1997 (Cth) (Telecommunications Act).1 However, this amendment has not been included in the amendments to the Miscellaneous Amendments Bill. The Law Council reiterates that the Act should require judicial oversight for the issuance of Schedule 1 industry assistance notices.

You can read the full submission below.

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