From 1 November 2014, the Commonwealth Ombudsman will handle complaints about the processing of freedom of information (FOI) requests. Any complaints received by the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) after this date will be referred to the Commonwealth Ombudsman.
If you have questions or concerns about a current complaint, please contact your case officer or the OAIC Enquiries line.
These arrangements have been put in place following the Australian Government’s budget decision to abolish the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) by 1 January 2015 and the introduction of the Freedom of Information Amendment (New Arrangements) Bill 2014 into Parliament.
FOI complaints made to the OAIC that have not been finalised by 31 December 2014 will be transferred to the Ombudsman.
When can you complain about an FOI issue?
You can complain about an agency’s actions under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act). This is a separate process from asking for review of a decision made under the FOI Act. Complaints usually focus on how an agency has handled your FOI request or complied with other obligations under the FOI Act (such as the Information Publication Scheme).
Before making a complaint, you should raise your concerns directly with the agency. You can make a complaint at any point in the FOI process.
To make an FOI complaint, please contact the Commonwealth Ombudsman.