Regulatory framework

Illustration of the Independent Commissioner Against Corruption Act

The Independent Commissioner Against Corruption Act 2012 (the ICAC Act) established two offices; the Office for Public Integrity (OPI) and the Independent Commissioner Against Corruption (ICAC).

Section 17 of the ICAC Act sets out the functions of the OPI, and section 7 details the functions of ICAC.

Under the functions and powers invested in the office, the Commissioner may take action in relation to the conduct and practices of public officers and public authorities in public administration.

The ICAC Act does not provide any powers of investigation to the OPI, but significant and coercive powers to the Commissioner. 

The Commissioner’s powers include entry, search and seizure powers, the power to require a person to produce a document, and the power to conduct examinations (for a full list of the Commissioner’s powers, please refer to the ICAC Act).

Where the exercise of a power first requires an application to be made to the Supreme Court, the application must conform to the Supreme Court Special Applications Rules 2014. A copy of those rules can be accessed on the Courts Administration Authority website.

The ICAC Act also defines key terms and phrases including corruption, misconduct and maladministration.

Section 20 of the ICAC Act required the Commissioner to publish a set of Directions and Guidelines to govern and inform public officers, public authorities and inquiry agencies of their reporting obligations. Those Directions and Guidelines have been published and must be complied with.

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