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Make a request for our documents or request an amendment to a record

The Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner (OVIC) produces and holds a range of documents related to our regulatory and operational functions.

This page details the process for accessing OVIC’s information, making a formal request for our documents, and making a request to amend personal information in a document held by OVIC.

Before you make a formal request for access

You are encouraged to check if the information or document you are seeking is already publicly available on OVIC’s website. An overview of our documents, including links to view and download many of our documents can be found here.

Where you cannot find the information or document you are seeking, we encourage you to contact us and ask if the information or document you are seeking is available or can be provided to you.

We may be able to provide you with the information or documents you are seeking without requiring you to make a formal request for access. If we can’t, or the document contains exempt information, we will direct you to make a formal freedom of information request.

Making a formal request for access to documents

The Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic) (FOI Act) provides you with the right to make a request for access to documents held by the Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner (OVIC).

There are certain documents held by OVIC that cannot be requested:

  • Under section 6AA of the FOI Act you cannot apply for access to a document that is the subject of, or discloses information that relates to a review under Part IV of the FOI Act, a complaint under Part VIA of the FOI Act, or an investigation.
  • Under section 90 of the Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014, you cannot apply for access to a protective data security plan provided to OVIC by an organisation in accordance with Part 4 of that Act.

How to make your request

You can make formal request for access by emailing enquiries@ovic.vic.gov.au, or alternatively you can apply online. You can also use this form to write your request and send it to us.

Under section 17 of the FOI Act, a request must meet three requirements to be valid:

  1. your request must be in writing;
  2. you must provide sufficient information about the documents you are requesting we can identify and locate relevant documents; and
  3. you must pay the application fee, or if payment of the application fee would cause you hardship you can request us to waive the fee in full or in part.

If we cannot clearly identify the information or documents you are requesting, we will contact you to clarify your request.

After you submit a request

After you submit a request we will assess it to ensure it meets the requirements outlined in section 17 of the FOI Act. If we determine your request is not valid, we will notify you within 21 days from the date we received your request and provide you with assistance to help you make the request valid. If your request is valid, we will begin processing it.

Timeframes

We have 30 days from the date you make a valid request to provide you with a decision. However, we can extend this time by up to 15 days if we need to consult with third parties whose information may be contained in the requested document(s). We may also extend this time by up to 30 days with your agreement. We will let you know if the timeframe changes.

Making a formal request to amend personal information

Section 39 of the FOI Act allows you to request an amendment to a document in your possession containing your own personal information where you believe your information is incorrect or misleading.

An amendment cannot have the effect of deleting or expunging the information recorded in a document. Generally, this means the amendment will be an addition or notation on the document.

There are certain documents held by OVIC that cannot be amended:

  • Under section 6AA of the FOI Act you cannot apply to amend a document that is the subject of, or discloses information that relates to a review under Part IV of the FOI Act, a complaint under Part VIA of the FOI Act, or an investigation.

How to make an amendment request

You can make an amendment request by emailing enquiries@ovic.vic.gov.au. You can also use this form to write your request and send it to us.

Under section 40 of the FOI Act, a request for an amendment must:

  1. be in writing;
  2. provide an address where a decision can be sent;
  3. specify how the information is inaccurate, incomplete, out of date or misleading; and
  4. specify the amendments you are requesting.

After you submit a request

After you submit a request we will assess it to make sure it meets the requirements in section 40 of the FOI Act. If we determine your request is not valid, we will notify you and advise how to make it valid. If your request is valid, we will begin processing it.

Timeframes

We have up to 30 days from the date we received your valid request to provide you with a decision.

Authorised decision makers under the FOI Act

A formal decision on a request for access to a document, or a request for an amendment under the FOI Act can be made by the Information Commissioner or OVIC’s Chief Operating Officer.

More information

For more tips, read our guidance on how to make an FOI request and request an amendment.

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