53. Access to material

(1) If the Registrar gives a person ("A") a warning notice or a decision notice, it must —
(a) allow him access to the material on which it relied in taking the decision which gave rise to the obligation to give the notice;
(b) allow him access to any secondary material which, in the Registrar's opinion, might undermine that decision.
(2) But the Registrar does not have to allow A access to material under subsection (1) if the material is excluded material or it —
(a) relates to a case involving a person other than A; and
(b) was taken into account by the Registrar in A's case only for purposes of comparison with other cases.
(3) The Registrar may refuse A access to particular material which it would otherwise have to allow him access to if, in its opinion, allowing him access to the material —
(a) would not be in the public interest; or
(b) would not be fair, having regard to —
(i) the likely significance of the material to A in relation to the matter in respect of which he has been given a notice; and
(ii) the potential prejudice to the commercial interests of a person other than A which would be caused by the material's disclosure.
(4) If the Registrar does not allow A access to material because it is excluded material consisting of a protected item, it must give A written notice of —
(a) the existence of the protected item; and
(b) the Registrar's decision not to allow him access to it.
(5) If the Registrar refuses under subsection (3) to allow A access to material, it must give him written notice of —
(a) the refusal; and
(b) the reasons for it.
(6) "Secondary material" means material, other than material falling within paragraph (a) of subsection (1) which —
(a) was considered by the Registrar in reaching the decision mentioned in that paragraph; or
(b) was obtained by the Registrar in connection with the matter to which that notice relates but which was not considered by it in reaching that decision.
(7) "Excluded material" means material which is a protected item (as defined in section 56).
(8) This section does not apply to a warning notice under section 18(1) or 18(2) or a decision notice under section 18(3).