Find out what the ICAC can and cannot do in the course of an investigation.

Private investigations

All investigations undertaken by the Commission are conducted in private as required by legislation.

Investigation powers

The Commission has powers to assist in corruption investigations.

The Commission has the power to:

  • require an inquiry agency, public authority or public officer to produce a written statement
  • require someone to attend at an examination to give evidence and to produce documents and other things
  • compel a person by notice to produce documents and other things
  • inspect and take copies of a person’s financial records
  • authorise an investigator or police officer to enter and search certain premises and property and to seize and retain documents and other things
  • access various covert surveillance capabilities
  • enter and inspect buildings, places and other things
  • summons witnesses
  • summons the production of documents
  • examine witnesses on oath, affirmation or declaration

Standard Operating Procedures

The ICAC Act requires the Commission to publish on its website the standard operating procedures that govern the exercise of powers by ICAC investigators.


The purpose of an examination is to gather evidence.

The Commissioner or an Examiner can require you to attend an examination.

Witnesses are required to take an oath or affirmation and to give truthful evidence.

All examinations are conducted in private and all witnesses may be represented by legal counsel.

ICAC Factsheet - Examination Process


The Commission has no authority to lay charges.

As a result of the 2021 amendments to the Independent Commissioner Against Corruption Act 2012 (ICAC Act), the Commission cannot send a brief of evidence directly to the DPP.

If at the conclusion of an investigation the Commissioner believes the matter could be the subject of a prosecution, the brief must be referred to the relevant law enforcement agency for further investigation and potential prosecution.

Click here for more information on the Commission’s role in the criminal justice process, in particular how an ICAC matter gets to court.