Legal Office

Right to Information Act

Background

The Right to Information Act 2009 commenced on 1 July 2010. The Act replaces the Freedom of Information Act 1991.

The following information has been prepared to assist individuals wishing to make an application for assessed disclosure under the Right to Information Act. Please note that the provisions of the Right to Information Act require that you make attempts to obtain the requested information through methods other than assessed disclosure prior to making your application. Details of those attempts must be included with your application.

Object of the Right to Information Act 2009

The object of this Right to Information Act is to improve democratic government in Tasmania by increasing the accountability of the executive to the people of Tasmania and increasing the ability of the people of Tasmania to participate in their governance by acknowledging that information collected by public authorities is collected for and on behalf of the people of Tasmania and is the property of the State.

This object is to be pursued by giving members of the public the right to obtain information held by public authorities and Ministers, and by giving members of the public the right to obtain information about the operations of Government.

As a public authority, the University of Tasmania is bound by the provisions of the Right to Information Act and is committed to furthering the objects stated within it.

Address for applications

All applications for information under the Right to Information Act should be made to the following address:

General Counsel & University Secretary
Private Bag 42
Hobart TAS 7001

Making an Application

Applications must be made in writing. Applicants are encouraged to use the application form (Word 68KB). Where the application form is not used you must include the following items (at a minimum) on your written request.

  1. Your name
  2. Your address for communication (this may be a postal or email address)
  3. Your daytime contact details (a phone number is preferred but an email address will be accepted if you are ordinarily contactable on that address during business hours)
  4. The general topic of the application
  5. Details of the information you are requesting
  6. Details of any efforts undertaken by you to obtain the information by a method other than an application under the Right to Information Act
  7. The date of the application
  8. If your application relates to your personal information, you will need to supply the University with proof of identity

Please note, all applications must be signed by the applicant.

Application Fees

All applications must be accompanied by the fee prescribed under section 16 of the Right to Information Act. The fee is 25 fee units which is $34.00 as at 1 June 2010. The fee is indexed annually in accordance with the Fee Units Act 1997. You may apply for a waiver of the application fee if you are a Member of Parliament making the application as part of your official duties, you are impecunious, or if the information sought is intended to be used for a purpose that is of general public interest or benefit.

Please note, the application fee must be paid, or a decision to waive the fee must be made, prior to the University assessing your request for information.

Time Frame for Decisions

You will be notified of the decision on an application for assessed disclosure within 20 working days of your application being accepted by the University.

Before the application is accepted, the University has a maximum of 10 working days to negotiate with you to further define the scope of your application.

Where the Right to Information Act requires the University to consult with a third party in relation to all or part of your request, a further 20 days will be allowed in addition to the original 20 day time frame permitted to process your request.

If the above time limits are not met your application will be deemed to be refused and you may apply to the Ombudsman for a review of that decision.

Further Information

If you require further information on how to make an application for assessed disclosure, please contact the University's Governance and Legal office on the details provided above. For more general information on the Right to Information Act please click on the following links: