General applications

GA11: Delay or limit disclosure

Last updated: January 24, 2024

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This information sheet gives you information you need to apply to delay or limit disclosure.

The Tribunal’s Rules set deadlines for the parties to share information. This includes sharing:

  • documents
  • witness lists
  • information about remedy

The Tribunal’s Rules also tell you what documents you must share. For more information see Disclosing documents.

What to do if the participants agree to a change

Ask the other participants if:

  • you want more time
  • you want to share only certain documents

If they agree to more time, tell the Tribunal the new date for sharing information. Rule 20.2(3) requires this.

If they don’t agree, you must apply for more time.

Legal test for delaying or limiting disclosure

Rule 20.2(4) sets out the legal test.

You must show your request is “reasonable and fair in the circumstances”.

Reasonable means there is a good reason.

Fair includes the following ideas:

  • the process doesn’t cost too much or take too long
  • all participants have a chance to prove their side

Information the Tribunal will consider

The Tribunal will consider:

  • the reasons for the request
  • fairness to both parties


1. Delay sharing documents

A respondent must share documents before they apply to dismiss a complaint. This keeps the process fair.

In most cases, the complainant needs documents to respond to the application. Especially if the respondent says the complainant isn’t likely to win.

But documents won’t always help the complainant. For example, the respondent says another proceeding dealt with the same problem. The complainant can respond without documents about the complaint.

The respondent can argue:

  • the complainant does not need the documents now
  • the process will be fair without the documents
  • if the Tribunal dismisses the complaint, there is no need to share documents
  • the respondent can share the documents later if the Tribunal doesn’t dismiss the complaint

2. Limit the documents to share

A respondent may have a lot of documents that could relate to the complaint.

The respondent can argue:

  • We can share documents about the important facts the parties disagree about
  • This would be fair and reasonable. This is a simple case.


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