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  • How to claim

    We will give you an adequate opportunity to claim legal professional privilege. When using our notice or access powers, we will allow time for you to consult with your lawyers.

    When making a claim for privilege, you will need to prove that your claim is valid and provide sufficient factual details to support it. You should:

    • state your claim clearly – a vague assertion is not a claim
    • provide sufficient information and evidence to support your claim
    • set out the facts of each claim.

    You have the burden of proving your privilege claim and providing enough information to enable us to decide whether to accept it or not.

    Approved forms

    We have approved forms for you to make your claim, although we may allow you to use your own form if it:

    • provides sufficient information, facts and evidence to support your claims
    • does not allow for categories for suppression – such as 'highly confidential', 'not relevant' or 'commercial in confidence'.

    Completion of our approved forms will allow your claim to be dealt with more quickly.

    When completing the forms, you are requested to:

    • provide the facts in sufficient detail to support your claim, but not give facts that would amount to a waiver of privilege
    • in cases involving third parties, demonstrate that the dominant purpose of the communication was for litigation or to obtain or give legal advice.

    We will work with you to resolve disputed claims, or where more details are needed to support your claims.

    If a person fails to make a sufficiently articulated claim within a reasonable timeframe, we may notify the person that the documents in question may be accessed within 28 days (or such later time as we think reasonable) unless the person commences legal proceedings. The ATO may itself commence legal proceedings.

    Forms for claiming legal professional privilege are available via:

      Last modified: 25 Oct 2019QC 56551