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Access records after transfer to QSA (File Issue service)

If you need your agency's records after they’ve been transferred to QSA, you can recall them temporarily via our File Issue service.

Alternatively, you can access them in the Public Search Room at QSA.

File Issue is a fee-based service providing short term recall on a loans basis and is subject to QSA policies.

Fees and charges

Fees and charges are effective 1 August 2018.

Current fees are:

Item Cost
Search fee $16.00 per 15 minutes
Delivery–Standard (Mon, Wed, Fri) $9.25 per order
Delivery–Urgent (next working day) $31.05 per order
Retrieval–Standard $14.00 per item
Retrieval–Cold storage $18.60 per item

Digital copy–Standard
(300 ppi; ≤ A3 size; PDF )

$1.75 per page

Digital copy–Non-standard
(≥600 ppi; ≤ A3; other than PDF)

$7.20 per page

Digital copy–Oversized/Ultra high quality
(>600 ppi; >A3, TIFF or other )

$14.40 per metre

We send itemised invoices quarterly.

How to request records

Use the File Issue request form (DOCX, 147 KB) to request records. Email the completed form to fileissue.qsa@archives.qld.gov.au.

To complete your File Issue request, please refer to your Transfer Report from QSA or the Archives Search catalogue.

See an example of requesting records through the file issue service.

Only nominated delegates from the responsible agency can access original records and digital copies through the File Issue service.

To access the archived records of another agency through this service, you need the written consent of the responsible agency per s.18(2) of the Public Records Act 2002.

We issue audio visual (magnetic and film-based including microfilm) and electronic media such as computer disks and hard drives on the condition that your agency has the correct viewing equipment.

Request for record searches and quotes

When ordering, provide as much information as possible in the File Issue request form (DOCX, 147 KB) for us to identify the specific records and the particular services you want.

Where specific records cannot be easily identified, we may charge you for the time taken to search on your behalf. 

You can also use the order form to seek a quotation (e.g., for copying charges).

What records can't be requested

You cannot access the following record formats through the File Issue service:

  • photographic, other than those included in a general paper file
  • maps and plans not included in a general paper file
  • fragile items at risk of damage in transit
  • letterpress books which contain iron gall ink
  • 3 dimensional objects, including those contained in a general paper file
  • items that present a health and safety risk (usually mould-affected).

For further information, contact the File Issue team.

Delivery timeframes and loan periods

Loan period

The loan period is 90 days. You can apply for an extension if you need the records for longer than 90 days.

We issue monthly notifications for overdue loans.


Our standard delivery time for up to 10 items is 2 working days. Delivery days are Monday, Wednesday and Friday, except public holidays. This applies to digital deliveries as well as physical.

We deliver within the greater Brisbane area. Other arrangements will be made for the postal or courier delivery of records outside the greater Brisbane area.

We will notify you if particular orders will take longer to process, such as:

  • large orders (more than 10 items)
  • where conservation work is required to enable access (minimum 10 working days)
  • where records retrieved from cold storage require pre-conditioning (minimum 5 days)
  • for complex formats or those requiring digitisation.

Scanning and digitisation of records

We can digitise most paper-based records and provide copies in a range of file formats and quality. We charge fees accordingly.

We email most average-sized documents at 300 ppi resolution, in black and white, and in PDF.

If you have different requirements (e.g. higher resolution, different file format, preferred delivery method), you can indicate these on the File Issue form (DOCX, 147 KB).

You can reduce costs by providing as much detail as possible on the specific pages you require.

Orders for more than 15 pages or for more complex formats such as oversized maps and plans or microfilm may take longer than normal to deliver.

Retrieval from cold-storage

A minimum of 5 working days applies for pre-conditioning and delivery of items from specialist cold storage (e.g. microfilm).

If you are unsure if requested records are in cold storage, call the File Issue team on (07) 3037 6625 or email fileissue.qsa@archives.qld.gov.au.

Care of records on loan

We expect that agencies will have robust internal policies and procedures to ensure the appropriate tracking, safekeeping and timely return of records to us.

Archived records can be aged and fragile. Follow the recommendations below while these records are in your care.

  • Leave records in their archival packaging when not in use.
  • Do not alter records in any way.
  • Keep documents in their original order.
  • Avoid damage
  • Don’t apply sticky notes, labels or adhesive page markers, or use pens, highlighters or other writing tools to write on records.
  • Don’t dog ear pages—use loose paper flags instead, but remember to remove them before returning.
  • Use records in a clean environment away from food, drink, moisture, heat and insects.
  • Never attempt to repair records (e.g. using sticky tape).
  • Notify QSA immediately of any damage or loss.

Returning records

Return records at the end of the loan period by indicating ‘Return’ on the order form. We will arrange to collect the records on our standard delivery days of Monday, Wednesday and Friday (within the greater Brisbane area).

Contact the File Issue team

For queries regarding specific orders or billing, call (07) 3037 6625 or email: fileissue.qsa@archives.qld.gov.au

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