ASIC’s document production guidelines
This information sheet (INFO 242) provides an overview of ASIC’s document production guidelines. The guidelines are designed to help those who produce books to ASIC in connection with its investigations or surveillance activities, whether on a voluntary basis or in response to ASIC’s compulsive powers. ‘Books’ are defined in the guidelines as including documents and any other record of information in both electronic and/or hard copy.
ASIC has consulted with law firms and financial institutions about these guidelines and is thankful for their feedback.
This information sheet explains:
- how the guidelines will help you
- why we need document production guidelines
- how to use the guidelines.
By producing books using the methods set out in the guidelines, you can expect to reduce your time and costs. If you use the methods in the guidelines, ASIC’s time and costs in reviewing the books produced to it are also likely to reduce.
If you do not produce books in accordance with the guidelines, ASIC may ask you to produce the books again following the guidelines. This will likely cause ASIC to take more time and incur more costs for you and your stakeholders.
The guidelines also describe how ASIC can help you by discussing both the scope of a notice and the method by which books should be produced to ASIC.
ASIC may give you a written notice that requires you to produce books (notice to produce). We may also ask you to provide books voluntarily. If you need to produce books in response to a written notice or voluntarily, our guidelines make clear how we prefer you to produce your books.
They set out:
- our preferred methods for producing books to ASIC in electronic and hard copy form
- how ASIC requests books to be produced when using a litigation support system.
The precise details of these methods can be found in the document production guidelines. The guidelines encourage you to produce electronic books over hard copy books in almost all cases.
Please note that this information sheet is a summary giving you basic information about a particular topic. It does not cover the whole of the relevant law regarding that topic, and it is not a substitute for professional advice.
You should also note that because this information sheet avoids legal language wherever possible, it might include some generalisations about the application of the law. Some provisions of the law referred to have exceptions or important qualifications. In most cases, your particular circumstances must be taken into account when determining how the law applies to you.
This is Information Sheet 242 (INFO 242), issued in March 2020.