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Making a request

Form of making a request

To obtain information under the terms of the Code of Practice on Access to Government Information 2016 you should make an application in writing to the relevant Government Department. It is advisable that you make it clear that you are asking for information under the 2016 Code.

Timescale for compliance with request

Information will be provided as soon as practicable.

The target time for response to simple requests is 10 working days from the date of receipt.

Simple is not defined but should include most requests that do not require extended search or consideration (not normally taking longer than two hours). An interim response, explaining the nature of any difficulties, should be sent if a response is behind time.

This target time may need to be extended when significant search or collation of material is required. Applicants should be notified if it is going to take more than 10 working days to respond to their request.

Where information cannot be provided under the terms of the 2016 Code, an explanation will be given to you.

Fees for requests

No charges should be levied for processing simple requests for information.

Where a request is complex and would require extensive searches or records or processing or collation of information, a charge, reflecting reasonable costs, may be made if notified in advance.

Complaints

Complaints that information has not been provided, or that unreasonable charges have been demanded, should be made first to the Department or body concerned.

Departments should have an appeal mechanism in place to ensure that the applicant has been fairly treated under the provisions of the Code, that any exemptions have been properly applied, and that charges are reasonably and consistently applied.

If, after appeal, an applicant still remains dissatisfied, complaints may be made through a Member of Tynwald to the Information Commissioner.

Complaints will be investigated by the Information Commissioner who will advise the complainant of his decision.

However, the Code is non-statutory and the decision of the Information Commissioner is not binding on the Department, but, in the event of an adverse decision from the Information Commissioner, "it is expected that a Department would normally seek to implement the decision".