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Interim exemptions

This page provides information about Archives New Zealand’s exemption process and describes the steps required to submit a formal request to the Chief Archivist for an exemption.

Background to exemptions

Under Section 30 of the Public Records Act 2005, public offices and local authorities may request exemption from compliance with specific requirements of a mandatory standard.
Archives New Zealand has four mandatory standards:

While Archives New Zealand has worked to ensure the mandatory standard requirements are reasonable for organisations to meet, there are always exceptions. If you have any concerns or questions about your organisation’s ability to comply with mandatory standard requirements, please contact the Archives New Zealand Government Recordkeeping Programme.
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Why issue exemptions?

The Chief Archivist can issue exemptions in circumstances where it may not be possible or reasonable for your organisation to comply with a particular requirement. For instance; it might not be possible for organisations with overseas posts to comply with some requirements in those posts if the requirements are inconsistent with local laws or regulations. Also, if your organisation is about to be disestablished, it may not be reasonable to invest in new recordkeeping frameworks in order to comply with a requirement of a standard.
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What are the steps in the exemption process? 

1. Contact Archives New Zealand
Contact the Archives New Zealand Government Recordkeeping Programme prior to applying for an exemption. Archives New Zealand will work with you to decide whether an exemption is required, clarify the exemptions process and answer any questions you might have.
2. Prepare your exemption application
If it is determined that a formal exemption request is necessary, please prepare your application using the template provided. Please ensure all sections are completed fully.
Send your completed application to:   
Mandatory Standard Exemptions
Chief Archivist and Chief Executive
Archives New Zealand
10 Mulgrave Street, Thorndon, Wellington 6144, New Zealand
P.O. Box 12-050
3. Your request for an exemption is assessed
An Archives New Zealand representative will carry out the assessment of your application on behalf of the Chief Archivist. This process may involve:

A report on the assessment, with recommendations on whether to grant an exemption, is presented to the Chief Archivist for approval.
The requesting public office or local authority will be notified of the result of their application in writing.
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How long does an exemption last?

Exemptions are not permanent: decisions will be reviewed over time. You should submit a plan with your application which specifies how and when your organisation will achieve compliance (if this is possible), and how risks will be managed in the meantime.
Exemptions apply to a particular standard issued at a particular time. When a standard is reviewed, all exemptions to that standard will also lapse.
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Appealing a decision

If the Chief Archivist declines your exemption request, the administrative head of your public office or local authority may appeal to the Minister responsible for Archives New Zealand. This appeal must be in writing, and must be lodged with the Minister within 20 working days of the exemption request being declined. The notice of appeal must include full details of the decision and the reasons for the appeal.
The Minister may allow or disallow the appeal, after consulting with the responsible Minister for the public office or local authority which is appealing, and the Archives Council. These decisions are final and will be published in the New Zealand Gazette.
If you are unsure about anything related to the exemptions process, or want further details, please contact the Archives New Zealand Government Recordkeeping Programme.

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