Retrieve or access your agency's records at QSA (File Issue service)

To help ensure the health and safety of everyone with connections to Queensland State Archives we are suspending our delivery of records to agencies in the Brisbane CBD until further notice.
It is important to note our file issue service will continue to provide access to agency records held at QSA digitally and records can also be collected from QSA.
For more information, contact the File Issue team.

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 Reading Room at QSA free of charge.

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 July 2019.

Current fees are:

Item Cost
Search fee $16.35 per 15 minutes
Delivery–Standard (Tues & Thur) $9.45 per order
Retrieval–Standard $14.20 per item

Digital copy/scanning
(1-20 pages, 300 ppi; ≤ A3 size; PDF)

$1.80 per page

Digital copy/scanning

(21-50 pages, 300 ppi; ≤ A3 size; PDF)


Digital copy/scanning

(51-100 pages, 300 ppi; ≤ A3 size; PDF)


Additional fee for urgent scanning orders

$31.75 per order

We send invoices quarterly.

Note: these fees and charges are also available in ArchivesGateway.

Quotes are included as part of the File Issue request process in ArchivesGateway, including the option to pre-approve quotes or approve a quote once it has been issued by QSA.

How to request records through File Issue

Use the File Issue request section under My File Issues in ArchivesGateway to request records.

You can request records to be delivered digitally, physically to your office or to be accessed in our Reading Room at QSA.

To complete your File Issue request, please use the search function to locate the records and then add them to a request. Transfer reports provided by QSA can also assist you in searching for these records.

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 within ArchivesGateway.

Existing digital copies of open records may be accessed through ArchivesSearch.

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

You can search all your agency’s records, even those still closed under a restricted access period, in ArchivesGateway.

If you are unable to locate the records you are looking for, you can submit a search request through ArchivesGateway. We will then conduct a search of your records for up to one hour for a fee.

When you submit a search request in ArchivesGateway, provide as much detail as possible to help us identify the specific records you require, such as item ID’s, names, place/institution, departmental control numbers, and dates.

Search requests related to the National Redress Scheme, Right to Information, and Royal Commissions currently do not incur a search fee or time limitation. You can indicate in the search request if records are required for one of these purposes.

Records found during the search can be requested from QSA via the File Issue service in ArchivesGateway.

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. All records should be returned within this loan period.

We issue 6-monthly notifications for overdue loans.


Digital deliveries will be processed and sent out within 6 working days.

Digital copies are delivered through the File Issue section in ArchivesGateway, where you can download and save the digital copy to your own system.

Our standard delivery days for physical deliveries are Tuesday and Thursday, except public holidays.

Request for physical deliveries must be submitted through ArchivesGateway by Friday 4pm for Tuesday delivery and Tuesday 4pm for Thursday delivery.

We deliver within the Brisbane CBD area. Other arrangements will be made for the postal or courier delivery of records outside the Brisbane CBD 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
  • 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 scanned copies at 300 ppi resolution, in black and white, and in PDF. We charge fees accordingly and orders are processed and sent out within 6 working days.

If you have different requirements (e.g. higher resolution, different file format, preferred delivery method), please contact the File Issue team on (07) 3037 6625, by email or through ArchivesGateway.

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

You can see all records currently on loan to your agency and when they are due for return in ArchivesGateway.

You will also be notified in ArchivesGateway of any upcoming items due for return and items that are overdue.

To arrange the return records at the end of the loan period through ArchivesGateway by using the comment/discussion feature under the relevant File Issue ID to let the team know they are ready for return.

We will arrange to collect the records on our standard delivery days of Tuesday and Thursday (within the Brisbane CBD area).


For queries regarding the file issue services, including specific orders or billing, call (07) 3037 6625 or email:

For queries about RTI or Royal Commissions, call (07) 3037 6734 or email:

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