EthicalIf you (or any public authority) refuse to give an individual the information they requested, the individual has a right of appeal. The appeal must first be made to your practice, where they should write, within 40 working days of receipt of your refusal, to request a review of your handling of the initial request. The requester has a further right of appeal to the Scottish Information Commissioner if they are unsatisfied with your review response. On receipt of an appeal, the Scottish Information Commissioner will conduct a full investigation into the case. If, at the end of this investigation, the Commissioner finds that you (the public authority) have failed to act in accordance with FOISA, he has the power to force the release of information.

Where possible, ensure that a member of staff who was not involved in the original refusal conducts the review.

On receipt of a request for review, reconsider the information request and respond to the requester within 20 working days (this is required by law), either by providing some or all of the information, or by continuing to uphold your original decision to withhold.

Include in your response to the requester that they have a further right of appeal to the Scottish Information Commissioner [1].

For further details about dealing with a review request, refer to guidance provided by the Scottish Information Commissioner [2].

Sources of Information