Queries about our FOI functions can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also contact us through the other channels on our contact us page.
The Freedom of Information Act 2016 (FOI Act) commenced on 1 January 2018.
The objects of the FOI Act are to:
For further information, see our factsheet: Accessing information under the Freedom of Information Act 2016.
Under the FOI Act, the ACT Ombudsman monitors the FOI scheme and promotes the objects of the Act through a range of statutory functions. Information on each of these functions is provided below:
If you are not satisfied with the decision of an agency or a Minister, you can apply to the Ombudsman for review of the decision. Applications for an Ombudsman review must be in writing - please complete this form: Applying for an Ombudsman Review.
There is no fee for requesting an Ombudsman review.
In most cases, you must apply for an Ombudsman review within 20 working days after the day that notice of the decision was published on the disclosure log.
The Ombudsman has the discretion to allow an application for review made after the 20 working day period.
For more information, please see our factsheet and application form: Applying for an Ombudsman Review.
If you have a complaint about an agency or Minister’s action, or failure to take action, in relation to any of their functions under the FOI Act, you may make a complaint to the Ombudsman.
The Ombudsman will consider your concerns and may conduct an investigation into your complaint.
More information about making a complaint to the ACT Ombudsman is available on our website here.
Please note that making a complaint is different to seeking an Ombudsman review of a decision under the FOI Act.
If you are unsure or need assistance, please email email@example.com or phone us on 1300 362 072.
Under the FOI Act, an agency or Minister has 20 working days to process an access application, unless an extension applies.
More information about timeframes can be found in our factsheet: Processing times for decision-makers.
An agency or Minister can ask the applicant for additional time to process the application. Additional time can be sought more than once, unless the timeframe for making the decision has expired.
If an applicant refuses the request for additional time, the agency or Minister can apply to the Ombudsman for an extension of time of up to 15 working days. The agency or Minister must explain how it is not reasonably possible to deal with the application within the available timeframe because it involves a large volume of information or complex and potentially conflicting public interest factors.
For further information and how to apply please see: Factsheet and form: Applying for extensions of time.
Agencies and Ministers must publish open access information.
'Open access information' is defined in the Act and includes information such as:
The FOI Act gives the Ombudsman the power to issue a declaration that particular government information is open access information and must therefore be made publicly available.
Open access information is usually available on the website of the agency or Minister. We recommend that you refer to the relevant website for the information you are seeking. You can find open access information published by the Ombudsman here.
The Ombudsman has not made any open access information declarations at this time.
The FOI Act gives the Ombudsman the power to make guidelines for the FOI Act.
The Ombudsman has not made any guidelines at this time, but will continue to monitor the operation of the Act. In doing so, the Ombudsman may identify a need to make guidelines on particular issues. When preparing guidelines, the Ombudsman will consult with information officers and other stakeholders.
The Ombudsman will monitor whether:
The Ombudsman is required to report on the operation of the FOI Act at the end of each financial year. This report will be given to the Speaker for presentation to the ACT Legislative Assembly.