(1) If an agency or Minister is satisfied, when dealing with a request for a document, that a practical refusal reason exists in relation to the request (see section 24AA), the agency or Minister:
(a) must undertake a request consultation process (see section 24AB); and
(b) if, after the request consultation process, the agency or Minister is satisfied that the practical refusal reason still exists--the agency or Minister may refuse to give access to the document in accordance with the request.
(2) For the purposes of this section, the agency or Minister may treat 2 or more requests as a single request if the agency or Minister is satisfied that:
(a) the requests relate to the same document or documents; or
(b) the requests relate to documents, the subject matter of which is substantially the same.