Official information law


The amount of information held by both public and private sector organisations can be daunting, and how you deal with much of this information is subject to statutory requirements.  The requirements often seem complex, but we can assist you to easily and efficiently comply with them.

When you deal with central or local government, having accurate information on their thinking is vital.  We have the expertise to help you make the most of your right to access information.

If you are in government, you will have to deal with requests for official and personal information.  We can help you navigate the statutory processes that you need to follow to respond to difficult requests.  We can also help you comply with record-keeping obligations and advise on when documents can be disposed.

We advise clients on handling Official Information Act requests and requests for personal information, and responding to investigations by the Ombudsmen or Privacy Commissioner.  We help clients make requests for official and personal information, and help clients take complaints to the Ombudsmen or Privacy Commissioner.

In addition, we advise both public and private sector clients on acting in accordance with the privacy principles in the Privacy Act, and we advise public sector clients on how to comply with the Public Records Act.

We draft and advise on official information and personal information manuals and guidelines, and provide training courses to assist our clients to understand and comply with their obligations under the relevant legislation.

Work highlights

Providing compliance training to central and local government

on official information and privacy legislative obligations

Advising a large corporate

on the application of the Privacy Act to cloud computing services and the storage of its customers' information overseas

Advising public and private organisations

on the application of the Privacy Act and the information privacy principles, and specific codes such as the Health Information Privacy Code

Advising the Electricity Commission (now the Electricity Authority)

on the handling of a major Official Information Act request received in relation to its decision to approve a major upgrade of the North Island grid. The request involved the collation and analysis of over a thousand documents

Advising a large Crown entity

on its procedures for dealing with requests for information

Undertaking a Privacy Impact Assessment for the NZ Transport Agency

on a software proposal

Our team

Alastair Hercus

Partner, Wellington

Alastair specialises in public and commercial law. He advises clients on legislative design, decision-making by statutory bodies…

  • DDI +64 4 498 7318
  • M +64 21 449 993


Hamish Kynaston

Partner, Wellington
Board of Management

Hamish specialises in employment relations, litigation, health law, health and safety, and education…

  • DDI +64 4 462 0439
  • M +64 21 279 2147


Peter Chemis

Partner, Wellington

Peter specialises in employment law, industrial relations and related areas, and leads Buddle Findlay’s national employment team…

  • DDI +64 4 498 7339
  • M +64 27 444 6619


Sherridan Cook

Partner, Auckland
Board of Management

Sherridan specialises in employment, industrial relations and health and safety as well as litigation and dispute resolution…

  • DDI +64 9 357 1858
  • M +64 27 545 9768


Susie Kilty

Partner, Wellington

Susie specialises in competition, fair trading, overseas investment consents and economic regulation, particularly of infrastructure…

  • DDI +64 4 498 7356
  • M +64 21 792 134


Tony Dellow

Partner, Wellington

Tony specialises in competition law and regulatory processes, especially in infrastructure industries. Tony’s practice is unique…

  • DDI +64 4 498 7304
  • M +64 21 349 651