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Section 49N - Information Commissioner may facilitate a negotiated agreement

Guidelines

Facilitating a negotiated agreement

1.1

During a review, the Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner (OVIC)1 may facilitate an agreement between an agency and applicant.2 The agreement must be in writing,3 and a Commissioner can make a decision on the review on the basis of this agreement.4

1.2

If an applicant and an agency or Minister reach an agreement, OVIC will dismiss the review.

1.3

A decision under section 49N is not reviewable by the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal.5

1.4

By providing the option for a negotiated agreement, section 49N removes the requirement for a formal and independent review process where it is not needed. This supports OVIC’s obligation to resolve matters with as little formality and technicality as possible.6

  1. Section 6I sets out the functions of the Information Commissioner and the Public Access Deputy Commissioner; both are responsible for handling FOI reviews. In this section, the FOI Guidelines collectively refer to the Information Commissioner, the Public Access Deputy Commissioner, and OVIC staff as ‘OVIC’ unless otherwise stated.
  2. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 49N(1).
  3. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 49N(2).
  4. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 49N(3).
  5. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 50(3G)(b).
  6. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 49H.
  7. Section 6I sets out the functions of the Information Commissioner and the Public Access Deputy Commissioner; both are responsible for handling FOI reviews. In this section, the FOI Guidelines collectively refer to the Information Commissioner, the Public Access Deputy Commissioner, and OVIC staff as ‘OVIC’ unless otherwise stated.
  8. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 49N(1).
  9. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 49N(2).
  10. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 49N(3).
  11. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 50(3G)(b).
  12. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 49H.

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Last updated 18 January 2024

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