Legal Deposit

Legal Deposit is a statutory provision requiring publishers to deposit copies of their publications in a nominated collecting institute.  The Legal Deposit system ensures that the works of authors and publishers will be preserved for present and future generations.

For a summary of what Legal Deposit means to you, please see our online brochure Legal Deposit in Western Australia. 

Legal Deposit in Western Australia 

The State Library of Western Australia is the Legal Deposit library for Western Australia.  The Legal Deposit Act 2012 was passed in May 2012.  This Act covers print, audio-visual and digital material, including works published on the internet.

The Legal Deposit Regulations 2013 covering the sections of the Act relating to print and other physical items came into force on January 1st 2014.

Internet and other online publications are not covered by the 2013 Regulations.  Regulations covering these publications will be developed in consultation with stakeholders.  In the interim we continue to collect a wide range of Western Australian publications by donation and purchase. Please contact us if you are interested in providing us with born-digital publications. 

The 2013 Regulations apply to print and other physical publications published in Western Australia, by a person who is resident in WA, or whose principal place of business is in WA.

A publication is any work that has been made available to the public.  A publication can be in any format: a book, newspaper, journal, pamphlet, map, printed music, film, CD, DVD, computer disc or other device.

Please contact us if you have any questions about what needs to be deposited.

Publications need to be deposited with the State Library within 30 days of publication.

Legal Deposit material should be sent to:

Legal Deposit
State Library of Western Australia
25 Francis St
Perth WA 6000
Telephone: (08) 9427 3348

Hand delivered Legal Deposit material should be taken to our ground floor Welcome Desk with a completed Legal Deposit / Donation Receipt form. 

The comprehensive collections formed through Legal Deposit provide a valuable resource for research into all aspects of Western Australian life: its history and culture including artistic, commercial, technical and scientific endeavour.

Documents for public consultation and display 

If you are sending documents for public consultation and display please send then in addition to the copies required under Legal Deposit and/or the Premier's Circular Number 2003/17.

Legal Deposit for Government Agencies

The Legal Deposit Regulations 2013 apply to Western Australian Government publications; additional requirements for WA Government agencies, including a requirement for the deposit of digital Western Australian Government publications, are specified in a directive from the Premier of Western Australia (Premier's Circular Number 2003/17).

For instructions on how to comply with the circular see:Government Publications : Further Information

Legal Deposit for Newspapers

The Newspaper Libel and Registration Act of 1884 stipulated that a copy of every newspaper published in Western Australia must be signed by its printer and sent to the State Library of Western Australia within 24 hours of publication. The Act was repealed in 2006 and has been replaced by the Legal Deposit Act 2012 and the Legal Deposit Regulations 2013 which came into force on January 1st 2014.  The regulations cover print and other physical items, including newspapers.

Legal Deposit at the National Library of Australia 

Legal deposit of Western Australian publications (including digital publications) is also required by the National Library of Australia

Legal Deposit material should be sent to:

Legal Deposit Unit
National Library of Australia
Parkes Place
Canberra ACT 2600 


Legal Deposit in other parts of Australasia

Information on the legal deposit requirements for publishers in other states of Australia or in New Zealand is available on the National and State Libraries web page Legal Deposit in Australasia.


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Page last updated: Wednesday 5 October 2016

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