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Freedom of Information (FOI)

The Western Australian Freedom of Information Act 1992 gives all Western Australians a right of access to information held by the Department of the Attorney General.

If you are searching for court transcripts and documents of a judicial nature please contact the relevant court directly as these documents are accessible outside of the Freedom of Information provisions.

For information held by other State Government Departments and Local Government Authorities please ensure you direct your enquiries and applications to those agencies. The Department of the Attorney General is only able to assist applicants with documents within its possession.

There are a number of Freedom of Information coordinators who respond to Freedom of Information applications for documents held by the Department of the Attorney General.

Applications for documents of an administrative nature should be addressed to:

FOI and Records Management Officer
Knowledge Management and Compliance Branch
Department of the Attorney General
Level 24, David Malcolm Justice Centre
28 Barrack Street
PERTH WA 6000

Applications for documents dealing with legal matters that involve the State Solicitors Office should be addressed to:

FOI Coordinator
State Solicitors Office
PO Box B83
PERTH WA 6001

Applications for documents dealing with wills, trusts and estate management should be addressed to:

FOI Coordinator
Public Trustee
GPO Box M946
PERTH WA 6843

Applications for documents relating to personal guardianship should be addressed to:

Public Advocate
PO Box 6293
PERTH WA 6892

Applications for documents relating to the State Administrative Tribunal should be addressed to:

State Administrative Tribunal
GPO Box U1991
PERTH WA 6845

Information statement

The information statement as required by the Freedom of Information Act 1992 is incorporated in the Department's Handbook.

Information requests - Personal information

Applications for your personal information must be made in writing. Fees and charges do not apply.

Personal information can be:

  • factual or routine information, eg, date of birth, length of employment, qualifications and/or
  • opinions or evaluative material such as advice or recommendations of a third party, eg, records of interviews, material in personnel records.

Information requests - Non-personal information

Requests for information under the Western Australian FOI Act must be in writing and accompanied by a $30 application fee.

Service delivery

Under the FOI Act, the Department is required to process requests for information within 45 days of receiving the application. While the FOI Act encourages open government through the release of documents and information, there is provision under Section 23 to refuse access on a range of grounds. Applicants have a right of appeal in these cases, initially to the Department and subsequently to the Information Commissioner.

Notice of decision

The applicant will receive in writing, notice of the Department's decision relating to the request. The notice will include the following information:

  • date of the decision
  • name and designation of the decision-maker
  • reasons for deleting any matter
  • reasons for deferring access
  • arrangements for giving access
  • reasons for refusing access to any matter
  • the amount and basis for any charges levied and
  • the rights of review and procedures to be followed.

Review rights

If the applicant is aggrieved with a decision made by the Department, they have the right to submit a written request for a review of that decision. This must be done within 30 days after being given notice of the decision. The review is to be conducted by a person other than the person who made the original decision and who is not subordinate to that person. The agency must respond with a written notice of decision within 15 days and no fees are involved.

If the applicant is still aggrieved, they may lodge a written complaint to the Office of the Information Commissioner within 60 days following the internal review decision (30 days for third parties). The Commissioner's decision is final unless an appeal is made to the Supreme Court on a question of law.

Amendment of personal information

A person can apply to amend personal information in a document held by the Department. This provision exists to ensure the Department does not unfairly harm the person referred to, misrepresent facts about them or does not give a misleading impression.

Applicants must provide details and, if necessary, documentation in support of their claim to amend inaccurate, incomplete, out of date or misleading information.

In addition, applicants must indicate how they want the amendment to be made within the options set out in the Act, including:

  • Altering information
  • Striking out or deleting information
  • Inserting information and
  • Inserting a note in relation to information.

Charges

The Department can apply the following charges when processing an FOI application:

  • Charge for time taken dealing with the application - $30 per hour
  • Charge for access time supervised by staff - $30 per hour
  • Charges for photocopying - $30 per hour for staff time; and 20c per copy
  • Charges for staff time in transcribing information from a tape or other device - $30 per hour
  • Charge for duplicating a tape, film or computer information - actual cost and
  • Charge for delivery, packaging and postage - actual cost.

In cases where charges levied are expected to be higher than $25, the applicant will be provided with an estimate of charges as soon as possible after receipt of the application. The Department reserves the right to request an advance deposit. A reduction in charges may be sought in the case of financial hardship.

To inspect Department information available to the public, or for assistance with your request, contact the FOI and Records Management Officer.

Contact details

FOI and Records Management Officer
Department of the Attorney General

Level 24, David Malcolm Justice Centre
28 Barrack Street
PERTH WA 6000
Phone: (08) 9264 1124
Fax: (08) 9264 6340
Email: foi@justice.wa.gov.au


Last updated: 15-Jun-2016

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