Preliminary inquiries

IBAC may conduct a preliminary inquiry to help us determine whether to dismiss, refer or investigate a complaint or notification.

Preliminary inquiries may be in response to a complaint or notification, or initiated by our own motion. 

During a preliminary inquiry

IBAC can:

  • request more information from a principal officer of a public body
  • issue a witness summons requiring a person to produce documents or other things to the IBAC
  • issue confidentiality notices.

We can’t use some of our broader investigative powers at this stage, for example using surveillance devices and holding examinations to require people to give evidence. 

If you're contacted as part of a preliminary inquiry

If you're contacted by an IBAC officer as part of a preliminary inquiry, you must produce documents or other things as summonsed. It is an offence not to.

If we launch an investigation, you may be called as a witness. 

Who can you talk to?

If IBAC issues you with a confidentiality notice, you:

  • can't discuss the documents or information we've asked for
  • can’t tell anyone IBAC is conducting a preliminary inquiry into a matter, except your legal representative or registered health practitioner
  • must call IBAC first to discuss your options before you discuss confidential matters with an unregistered health professional.

Breaching a confidentiality notice is a criminal offence under the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission Act 2011 (Vic).