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Section 61L - Outcome of complaint


Making recommendations in relation to a complaint


The Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner (OVIC) may make recommendations regarding a complaint.1 This can include making suggestions for improvements to the agency’s policies, procedures or systems in relation to compliance with the Act.


Recommendations could include the agency or Minister:

  • conducting a review of its FOI procedures;
  • altering a function or step in its FOI process;
  • amending language on its website or FOI application form.

Notifying parties about a recommendation


OVIC must notify both the complainant and the agency or Minister of a recommendation.2 The notification must not include any exempt matter.3


If OVIC intends to make a recommendation that relates to, or a comment about, a person or body (including an agency or Minister), OVIC must give that person or body the opportunity to comment on and respond to a draft recommendation or comment.4


OVIC must consider any response received.5 In OVIC’s written recommendation, OVIC must set out any comments received on a draft recommendation or comment, to represent the person or body’s position on it.6

Referring a complaint


If OVIC determines that the subject-matter of the complaint requires further investigation and is within the jurisdiction of a person or body prescribed in the regulations, OVIC may refer the matter to that body.7

  1. Section 6I sets out the functions of the Information Commissioner and the Public Access Deputy Commissioner; both are responsible for handling FOI complaints. 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 61L(3).
  3. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 61(4).
  4. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), sections 61L(5).
  5. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 61L(6).
  6. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 61L(7).
  7. Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic), section 61L(8).
  8. Freedom of Information Regulations 2019, Schedule 2.



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Last updated 17 November 2023.

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