Find out what the Office of the Information Commissioner (OIC) can review and what you need to do before applying.
We review decisions which public bodies make under the Freedom of Information Act. These include:
Before applying to us for a review, you should ask the public body that made the decision on your FOI Request for an Internal Review.
You can request an Internal Review within four weeks of the original decision. A more senior member of staff will carry out the Internal Review. The public body has three weeks to complete its Internal Review and send you a new decision.
If a public body does not reply to your FOI request or your request for an Internal Review within the required time-frame, this is known as a "deemed refusal". You can then apply to us for a review.
We generally only accept an application for review after an Internal Review is complete. Exceptions apply if:
In general, you can apply to us for a review within six months of the public body's decision. We can extend the time limit if we think there are reasonable grounds for doing so.
You have only two weeks to appeal to our office if:
Do you want more information on the Freedom of Information Act? You will find regulations, codes of practice and manuals on the website of the Freedom of Information Central Policy Unit of the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform.
Our decision in a review is legally binding. The applicant or the public body or an affected party can appeal our decision to the High Court, on a point of law.Apply for a Review