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Privacy of documents - SSAT

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SSAT service charter regrding my rights to privacy

Why does the SSAT's service charter outline that my information can remain private if I wish yet they, via the presiding member, have insisted/ordered that all documents I have submitted to them for my appeal must be sent to my "ex". There are documents which SSAT have requested which are sensitive and I do not wish for my "ex" to have them. I am happy to disclose all information to the SSAT for them to peruse. I thought the SSAT was an an "inquistitorial" system rather than adversarial.

The appeal is based on incorrect calculations by CSA regarding depreciation of a company car (Pty Ltd business) that has been included as a salary!. There are case laws which clearly spell out that it shouldn't be considered. SSAT have basically threatened to dismiss my appeal out of hand. They even want info on the financial state of my partner which has nothing to do with the appeal.

Has anyone dealt with this heavy handed issue before and can I somehow legally stop them (SSAT) from passing the info on to her.O_o
SSAT Website said
Information Exchange

The SSAT recognises that people may have concerns about the privacy of documentation which is supplied to it.

Many child support matters involve information about people's financial or other personal circumstances. The SSAT needs to have all relevant information in order to make the correct or preferable decision. It is a principle of procedural fairness that any documents or information which the SSAT relies on to make a decision should be made available to all parties. This is so that all parties have an opportunity to comment on material given to the SSAT by another party or witness, allowing any questions to be raised. It would be improper for the SSAT to rely on documents which it receives without the knowledge of one of the parties.

This is not simply a procedural requirement of the SSAT but is based on the legal principle of a right to a fair hearing. That right includes a right to be informed of the nature and content of any material which is potentially adverse to a person.

Particular concerns
The usual position is that full disclosure of documentation to all parties is required. However, there may be occasions where it is appropriate for a document or part of the document not to be released to the other party.

Ordinarily it will be the responsibility of the person sending in information to delete any sensitive information using a dark pen. The SSAT is not responsible for editing documents supplied by the parties. It should be evident from the face of the document that there have been deletions. It is common for information such as addresses, phone numbers and tax file numbers to be deleted.

If a party has a particular request for the SSAT not to disclose certain information, that party should set out the reasons for the request in writing. It will be a matter for the SSAT members to determine whether or not that request is granted. A Case Manager cannot make this decision. The decision has to be made on a case-by-case basis and may vary depending on the circumstances of the particular case.

      Example 1
      A party produced documentation of their business, showing a reduction in their customer base, to demonstrate a downturn in the business. The documentation included details of the customers names and addresses. It may be appropriate for those customers names and addresses to be deleted. The SSAT may determine that procedural fairness will be satisfied by the substance of the information, being passed on to the other party rather than the detail - i.e. that the customer base has reduced from thirty (30) to ten (10) but not any details of the actual customers names.

      Example 2
      The detail contained in medical information may or may not be relevant to a particular case. If someone is suggesting they cannot work due to a medical condition it may be appropriate that the detail of the medical condition is relevant and therefore any medical report should be released.

However if a person indicates they have incurred expenses associated with an operation it may be irrelevant for the details of that medical condition to be disclosed (but receipts as evidence of actual expenditure may be required).

I believe we had a similar situation quite recently, in that situation the person got nowhere with SSAT blaming the CSA and vice-versa.
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