Our Office plays an important role in assisting agencies and the public, by providing advice, guidance and education about:
- the Commissioner’s functions and role within Victoria’s FOI regime
- any professional standards set by the Minister.
The Commissioner also has a broad educative function to promote the understanding and acceptance by agencies of the Freedom of Information Act 1982 and the object of the Act. Legislation relating to the FOI Act can be found here.
Information for the public
The following fact sheets provide further information to applicants and the general public about the FOI process, our Office and the way reviews and complaints are handled.
- The freedom of information complaints process – A guide for complainants
- The freedom of information review process – A guide for applicants
- Conciliating a complaint – Frequently asked questions (PDF)
- Glossary of FOI terms – A plain language guide to commonly used words (PDF)
Other useful links can be found here.
Resources for agencies
Fact sheets and guides on the recent changes made to the FOI Act
- An overview of the key changes made to the FOI Act (PDF)
- Guide to consultation and notification (PDF)
- Consultation and notification flowchart (PDF)
- Guide to timeframes and extensions of time (PDF)
The following fact sheets and guides have been prepared for use by agencies. Please click on the links below to access these resources.
- Guide to section 25A(5) – requests for documents that are obviously exempt
- Review of freedom of information decisions – A guide for agencies
- The FOI access process – A flowchart and checklist for agency decision makers (PDF)
- Writing FOI access decisions – How to draft a full and complete decision letter (PDF)
- Sample decision letter and schedule of documents – MS Word version (DOC)
- Top tips for senior managers – Seven ways you can support FOI principles (PDF)
- Assisting our office – How to participate in the review or complaint process (PDF)
- Guide to section 30 – Internal working documents (PDF)
- Guide to section 33 – Documents affecting personal privacy (PDF)
- Fees and charges – A guide to calculating costs in FOI requests (PDF)
- FOI Act – Key Provisions -ready reckoner (PDF)
FOI in practice and Case notes
The “FOI in practice” series of resources is designed to provide Victorian Government agency officers with information and guidance on applying the provisions of the FOI Act.
- Case note – Coulson v Department of Premier and Cabinet (Review and Regulation)  VCAT 229 (20 February 2018)
- Edition 1 – Substantial and unreasonable requests (PDF)
- Edition 2 – Johnson v Cancer Council Victoria  VCAT 1596 (PDF)
- Edition 3 – Hon Tim Smith MP v Hon Daniel Andrews MP Premier  VCAT 340 (PDF)
- Edition 4 – Jurisdictional Hearing – Cochrane v Melbourne Polytechnic (PDF)
- Edition 5 – O’Brien v Jennings  VCAT 1395 (PDF)
FOI Practitioners Forum – Health Sector
The Health Sector FOI Practitioners Forum was held on the 6 June 2017. The below links allow you to download the materials presented on the day.