If an act has been amended a number of times, the government printer will re-issue the act in a new pamphlet version incorporating all of the changes up to a specified date.
Reprinted acts are a bit like an online compilation except that they potentially become out-of-date over time if subsequent amendments are made to provisions of the act.
Reprinted acts are not passed again by the parliament, but are compiled by the executive branch of government under legislative authority.
Online compilations of Commonwealth legislation are now authoritative and can be used in legal proceedings, as outlined in the Evidence Amendment Act (Cth) Schedule 3. An authoritative online compilation from the Federal Register of Legislation will always be in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) format and will be stamped with a unique ComLaw identifier on every page. There is also a recognisable tick logo to indicate authoritative online material.
For more information about authoritative content on The Federal Register of Legislation, visit their disclaimer page.
In Western Australia, the Online compliation of an act is not recognised as authoritative. Paper reprints are the official authorised version of WA legislation, and it is this version which should be taken to court (along with any subsequent amending acts if the provision you wish to cite was affected by the amendments).
The Parliamentary Counsel's Office has made available downloadable PDFs of all reprints of current Western Australian acts in force. Reprints should always be updated to ensure you have the current version of the law. See Updating Acts for more information.