Freedom of Information


This page provides information about the FOI Act, how to make an FOI request, charges, and contacts for further information:


Purpose of Freedom of Information (FOI)

The purpose of the Freedom of Information Act 1982, (“the FOI Act”) is to give members of the public rights of access to information held by the Government of the Commonwealth and of its agencies. Under the FOI Act, members of the public can seek access to documents held by IPEA.

Making a Freedom of Information (FOI) Request

Requests to access documents from IPEA must:

  • be made in writing
  • state that the request is an application for the purposes of the FOI Act
  • provide enough information to clearly identify the documents sought.

To make an FOI request, please ensure that the request is sent to:

The FOI Coordinator
Legal and Governance
Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority
One Canberra Avenue
FORREST ACT 2603

Email: foi [at] ipea.gov.au.

Charges

There is no fee for making an FOI request. The FOI Act provides that charges may be imposed for processing requests (except where you are seeking documents containing your own personal information). Should your FOI request incur any charges, you will be provided with an estimate of the applicable charges. Your request will not proceed until a response to the estimate is received by IPEA.  

IPEA may decide to remit, reduce or not impose processing charges under certain circumstances. 

IPEA is required by section 11C of the FOI Act to disclose access decisions through a disclosure log on its website. The disclosure log provides access to information which has been released in response to an FOI request.

Reviews of Freedom of Information Decisions made by IPEA

A person who has made an FOI request and is not satisfied with IPEA’s decision in that matter can apply to have the decision reviewed. Details of how to do this are sent to the FOI applicant with the decision letter.

Complaints About IPEA’s Handling of FOI Requests

Any person who is not satisfied with how IPEA has handled an FOI request can complain to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.  

Exemption

Under the Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority (Consequential Amendments) Act 2017, the IPEA is exempt from being required to provide information under the FOI Act 1982 in relation to any personal advice provided to members of parliament, or to a person employed under the Members of Staff Parliament (Staff) Act 1984, about travel expenditure matters. 

Freedom of Information Disclosure Log 

Under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act), agencies are required to publish information in documents provided in response to FOI requests. The publication of such documents must be done within 10 working days of the release of the documents to the applicant. However, exemptions apply to the following kinds of information:

  • personal information about any individual, if it would be unreasonable to publish the information;
  • information about the business, commercial, financial or professional affairs of any person, if it would be unreasonable to publish the information;
  • other information of a kind determined by the Information Commissioner, if it would be unreasonable to publish the information.

In addition, certain exemptions may apply to particular sections of a published document. Where applicable, these redactions have been identified.

Information Publication Plan

As a Commonwealth statutory authority subject to the Freedom of Information Act 1982, IPEA is committed to improving transparency and access to information about IPEA and its operations.

As part of this commitment, IPEA will:

  • publish organisational details, including details about its statutory appointees
  • information about IPEA’s functions and the exercise of those functions
  • IPEA’s annual reports and other information routinely provided to Parliament.

In line with the Freedom of Information Act 1982, IPEA has published the following information on its website:

You are able to contact IPEA’s FOI Coordinator on foi [at] ipea.gov.au to make requests for documents not published on the IPEA website. Documents that have been released as a result of FOI requests are published in IPEA’s FOI Disclosure Log.

More Information?