When can the Commissioner accept an ‘application for review’ that has not been subject to an internal review?
There are a number of decisions made by an FOI Body that the Commissioner can review under the Freedom of Information Act 2014, which have not been subject to an internal review by the FOI Body.
The Commissioner may review the following decisions made by an FOI Body:
- Where a decision has been made to extend the time limit on a FOI request [section 14]
- Where a decision has been made to defer access to a record [section 16(1)(b) or (c) only]
- Where the original FOI decision was made by the head of the FOI Body
- Where a decision has been made that the FOI Act does not apply in relation to the records requested
- Where a third party has been consulted under section 38 (Procedure in relation to certain FOI requests to which section 35, 36 or 37 applies).Decisions made by the Commissioner are binding on all parties. There is however a right of appeal to the High Court, on a point of law, in relation to a decision made by the Commissioner [See Section 24(1)(a) of the Act]. In addition any decision of the High Court on an appeal carries a right of appeal to the Court of Appeal.