Parliament's Power to Require the Production of Documents - a Recent Victorian Case

Greg Taylor


In 2007, the Victorian government refused to produce a series of documents despite an order by the State’s Legislative Council to do so, claiming that the Council’s legal powers did not extend to making the order in question. The government cited some obscure alleged rules of law in support of their
position which no government elsewhere in Australia has ever thought to rely on. In citing these rules, the Victorian government appears to have misunderstood an early edition of Erskine May. This article demonstrates that none of the alleged rules exists, and the government’s refusal was wrong in law. Therefore is should not be regarded as setting a precedent for
future cases.

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