Our reference: RQ19/02046
Agency reference: LEX 45021
Ms Evelyn Doyle
Sent by email: email@example.com
Extension of time under s 15AB
Dear Ms Doyle
On 1 August 2019, the Department of Human Services (the Department) applied for further
time to make a decision on your FOI request of 7 June 2019 under the Freedom of Information
(Cth) (the FOI Act).
This application is on the basis that the processing period is insufficient to deal adequately
with your request, because it is complex.
The Department advised that the statutory timeframe had already been extended to allow
for consultation in accordance with s 15(6) of the FOI Act.
The Department attempted to obtain an agreement under s 15AA of the FOI Act for an
extension of time from you. On 31 July 2019, you refused the request for a 30 day extension.
You were agreeable to an extension of time of seven days.
Contact with you
On 6 August 2019, I wrote to you to seek your view on the Department’s application. You
responded to my inquiries and provided comments that I have taken into consideration.
As a delegate of the Information Commissioner, I am authorised to make decisions on
applications for extensions of time under s 15AB of the FOI Act.
I have decided to grant the Department an extension of time of 14 days under s 15AB(2) of
the FOI Act to 20 August 2019
. I am satisfied that the Department’s application for an
extension of time is justified, because the request is complex. My reasons follow:
• you are agreeable to this extension being granted
• the Department is experiencing delays with conducting consultations with third
1300 363 992
T +61 2 9284 9686
GPO Box 5218
F +61 2 9284 9666
Sydney NSW 2001
ABN 85 249 230 937
• the Department has followed up on multiple occasions with the third party for a
response. The third party advised the Department that the Department’s
consultation notice is being considered by the third party’s legal team
• further time is required for the Department to receive and consider consultation
responses from the third party and another Commonwealth entity.
If you have any questions about this email, please contact me on (02) 9284 9686 or via email
firstname.lastname@example.org. In all correspondence please include OAIC reference number at the top of
Assistant Review and Investigation Adviser (Legal)
Freedom of Information Dispute Resolution
7 August 2019
If you disagree with the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner’s (OAIC) decision
you can apply to the Federal Court of Australia or the Federal Circuit Court for a review of a
decision of the Information Commissioner if you think that a decision by the Information
Commissioner to grant an extension of time is not legally correct. You can make this
application under the Administrative Decisions (Judicial Review) Act 1977.
The Court will not review the merits of your case but it may refer the matter back to the
Information Commissioner for further consideration if it finds the decision was wrong in law
or the Information Commissioner’s powers were not exercised properly.
An application for review must be made to the Court within 28 days of the OAIC sending the
decision to you. You may wish to seek legal advice as the process can involve fees and costs.
Please contact the Federal Court registry in your state or territory for more information, or
visit the Federal Court website at http://www.fedcourt.gov.au/.
Further information about how applications to extend the timeframe to process an FOI
request are handled by the OAIC can be found published on our website:
For FOI applicants:
How to make an FOI request: Extensions of time
For agencies and ministers: Guidance and advice: Extension of time for processing
The OAIC has the power to investigate complaints about an agency’s actions under the
Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act). This is a separate process from asking for an
Information Commissioner review following 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, rather than the decision itself.
In some cases, the Information Commissioner's investigation of a complaint may lead to the
agency addressing the issues that you have complained about. In other cases, the
Information Commissioner may make suggestions or recommendations that the agency
should implement. The Information Commissioner can only make non-binding
recommendations as a result of a complaint. You and the agency will be notified of the
outcome of the investigation.
FOI complaints to the OAIC must be made in writing. Our preference is for you to use the online FOI complaint form i
f at all possible.
Further information about how to make a complaint can be found published on our website: https://www.oaic.gov.au/freedom-of-information/reviews-and-complaints/make-an-foi-