BDM collects, uses and exchanges your information so that we can:
- contact you, including to get feedback on your experience with our services
- register your life events
- establish your identity and assess applications for products and services
- conduct and improve our service
- comply with our legal obligations
- manage our risks and help to identify and investigate illegal activity, such as fraud
- assist government and law enforcement agencies or regulators where permitted by law.
BDM operates within the privacy requirements of the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act 1996 (the Act) and other relevant legislation. Under the Act, BDM must, as far as practicable, protect people from unjustified intrusions on their privacy.
Personal information is information (including numbers and images) that can be linked to an identifiable living person. A subset of personal information is sensitive information which includes information about an identifiable living person including racial or ethnic origin, religious affiliations, sexual preferences or practices and criminal record.
Health information relates to information about an identifiable person (whether alive or deceased) concerning their physical, mental or psychological health, disability or genetic constitution.
BDM collects personal, health and sensitive information for the purposes of fulfilling its legislative and administrative functions. The type of information BDM collects depends on the nature of your contact with BDM.
BDM a registering authority whose main function is to register events that have occurred in Victoria such as births, deaths, marriages, adoptions, and relationships. It is required to collect information to register these events and for statistical purposes.
BDM may collect information:
- in the course of registering an event
- in the course of an inquiry under section 42 of the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act 1996 (Vic)
- when investigating a complaint or responding to an enquiry
- in applications requesting access to or information from the Register including certificates
- at the time of purchase of a BDM product.
BDM may collect personal (including financial details), health or sensitive information via various means including forms, applications, correspondence, communications (including telephone and on-line), statutory declarations, surveys, complaints, enquiries, proof of identity documents, images, databases or data feeds, and court documents.
If you choose to make an enquiry or provide feedback, while this may be done anonymously, personal information such as your name, contact details and an outline of events may be requested from you for the purposes of investigating the matter and providing you with a response.
Where purchase of a product is conditional upon you signing a licence agreement you may be required to provide personal information for the purpose of recording the current licensee of BDM product.
Contact details including work details are also collected from individuals interested in being informed of the BDM's products, projects and publications.
Consequences of not providing information include the BDM not being able to complete a registration, recording of inaccurate or incomplete details, refusal to grant access to records or sell a product, termination of an agreement and in some circumstances may constitute an offence which incurs penalties.
Use and disclosure
The information collected may be used to:
- Register births, deaths, marriages, adoptions, change of name, and relationships
- Issue a certificate or information from the Register
- Maintain the registers and accurately record events
- Cancel, amend or correct a registration
- Confirm identity and assess entitlement to a record held by BDM. Proof of identity documents may be validated with the issuing organisation e.g. VicRoads
- Process and record a point of sale transaction
- Enforce contractual obligations
- Answer your enquiries
- Determine your entitlement to access records held by BDM
- Investigate a complaint
- Conduct an inquiry
- Compile and disseminate statistics
- Conduct research.
BDM staff are only provided with information necessary for them to carry out the functions and activities of BDM. Information may be disclosed to other agencies for the purposes of law enforcement, statistical compilations, research or data cleansing.
BDM may be authorised or required by law to use or disclose personal, sensitive or health information for another reason. A person’s consent may be sought to use or disclose this information to another organisation for a particular reason however in some circumstances consent will not be necessary.
Personal and health information may be transferred outside of Victoria in accordance with the privacy legislation.
Child Information Sharing Scheme
The laws governing the management of information relating to the safety and wellbeing of children have changed.
Part 6A of the Child Wellbeing and Safety Act 2005 (Vic) and its supporting regulations permit a number of organisations to share current and previously collected information, to promote the wellbeing or safety of a child or group of children. The scheme commenced on 27 September 2018. The changes apply to the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages along with a number of other agencies and their funded or contracted organisations.
Learn more about the Child Information Sharing Scheme .
Access and correction
Requests for access to information held by BDM may be made under the access policies and Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act 1996 (Vic).
Correction of information held in the Register may occur under section 43 of the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act 1996 (Vic).
Otherwise access may be granted or records corrected subject to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic).
Requests for access or correction may be addressed to:
The Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages
GPO Box 4332
MELBOURNE VIC 3001
Data quality and security
BDM takes reasonable steps to ensure that personal and health information held is accurate, complete and up-to-date.
BDM relies on individuals to provide accurate and current information in the first instance.
BDM applies privacy and security measures to protect against the misuse, loss, unauthorised access or unauthorised disclosure of personal and health information.
Information collected is either destroyed or archived after use in accordance with the Public Records Act 1973 (Vic).
While BDM does not assign unique identifiers to individuals, it does assign a registration number to identify individual’s registration records. When transactions are processed, a point of sale number is generated for the purposes of recording the transaction and linking to the registration record.
Unique identifiers from proof of identity documents provided to BDM are collected for the purposes of verifying the bearer’s identity with the issuing organisation.