Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Green question mark with the words frequently asked questions to the right

What is the purpose of the Freedom of Information Act?

To give the public greater access to information about the workings of government and public bodies.

What new rights does the Act create?

The Freedom of Information Act 2000 gives two related rights:

  • The right to be told whether the information exists
  • The right to receive the information (subject to exemptions)

When did the Act come into force?

The Individual Right of Access came into effect on 1st January 2005.  Public authorities also had to adopt and maintain a Publication Scheme. 

What if I want some information that is not included in the Publication Scheme?

If you cannot find what you are looking for on our Publication Scheme you can make an Individual Right of Access Request.  Further information on how to do this is available on our How to Obtain Information page.

Do I have to pay for any of the information included in the Publication Scheme?

Details of applicable charges can be found in the Publication Scheme.

Does the Act only apply to records created from 1st January 2005?

No, the Act is fully retrospective.

Will I be able to obtain personal information about myself under the Act?

Requests for personal information will be dealt with under the provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998.  Further details can be found on our Data Protection page.

How do I go about requesting information?

The best way to request information is by writing to the Head of Corporate Governance.  Details can be found on the How to Obtain Information page.

Who ensures that the OPCC complies with the Act?

The Information Commissioner is responsible for ensuring that all public authorities comply with the Act.  You can contact the Information Commissioner by writing to:

Information Commissioner
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF

or via the website http://www.ico.org.uk/