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Cost recovery for retrospective ComSuper pensions

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Attn Department of Veterans' Affairs,

One issue identified by the Royal Commission on DVA is about issues in how DVA have handled cost recovery procedures following retrospective grants of ComSuper pensions to veterans who have received incapacity payments under MRCA and DRCA.

Excluding identifying personal information, the scope of this foi is for documents (whether held in electronic or other forms) sent in 2022 to clients about cost recovery of incapacity payments made to them due to the client receiving a ComSuper pension (including backpay of such a pension).

Verity Pane

INFORMATION.ACCESS, Department of Veterans' Affairs

1 Attachment

Dear Ms Pane

The Department of Veterans’ Affairs (the department) has received your
request for access to information under the Freedom of Information Act
1982 (FOI Act). I note you have requested access to the following:

‘Excluding identifying personal information, the scope of this foi is for
documents (whether held in electronic or other forms) sent in 2022 to
clients about cost recovery of incapacity payments made to them due to the
client receiving a ComSuper pension (including backpay of such a
pension).’

 

Your request was received by the department on 1 October 2022 and the
ordinary 30 day statutory period for processing your request commenced
from the day after that date.

 

Charges

 

The Department will notify you within 14 days of an estimate of the
charges that will apply to your request for non-personal information
before we process any requested documents or impose a final charge.

 

Your address

 

The FOI Act requires that you provide us with an address that we can send
notices to. You have advised your email address is
[1][FOI #9424 email]. Unless you tell us
otherwise, we will send all notices and correspondence to this address.

 

Disclosure log

 

Information released under the FOI Act may be published on a disclosure
log on our website, subject to certain exceptions. These exceptions
include where publication of personal, business, professional or
commercial information would be unreasonable.

 

Further assistance

 

If you have any questions about your request, please email
[2][DVA request email]

Yours sincerely

 

Fiona

Position Number:  62211034

Registrations Officer

Information Access Unit

Department of Veterans' Affairs / Sydney Office

Phone: 1800 VETERAN (1800 838 372) / GPO Box 9998 Brisbane QLD 4001

[3][DVA request email] / [4]www.dva.gov.au

 

[5]cid:image001.png@01D5A8E1.744710A0

 

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[FOI #9424 email]
2. mailto:[DVA request email]
3. mailto:[DVA request email]
4. http://www.dva.gov.au/

INFORMATION.ACCESS, Department of Veterans' Affairs

Dear Verity Pane,

 

Freedom of Information Request: LEX 54130

 

I refer to your request for access to documents held by the Department of
Veterans’ Affairs (Department) under the Freedom of Information Act 1982
(FOI Act). Your request was received by the Department on 1 October 2022
and was made in the following terms:

 

Excluding identifying personal information, the scope of this foi is for
documents (whether held in electronic or other forms) sent in 2022 to
clients about cost recovery of incapacity payments made to them due to the
client receiving a ComSuper pension (including backpay of such a pension).

 

The Department has 30 days to finalise your request. The 30 day statutory
timeframe commenced the day after your request was received by the
Department. Currently this decision is due 31 October 2022.  

Request for an extension of time

The Department seeks your agreement under section 15AA of the FOI Act to
extend the timeframe for the processing of your request by 30 days. This
would extend the due date for your request to Wednesday 30 November 2022.

If you agree to this request please respond to this email by COB Thursday
27 October 2022.

If agreed, the Department is required to provide your name and contact
details to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC)
for its records.

If you do not agree to this request, an extension of time request will be
sought from the OAIC under section 15AB of the FOI Act.

Contacting us about your request

 

We will contact you using the email address you have provided. Please
advise if you would prefer us to use an alternative means of contact.

 

If you have any questions, please contact me using the following details:

 

Post:                     Information Access Unit, Department of Veterans’
Affairs

  GPO Box 9998 BRISBANE QLD 4001

Email:                   [1][DVA request email]

 

 

Kind regards,

 

Suzanne

Position Number: 62211069

Information Access Officer

Information Access Unit

Department of Veterans’ Affairs

e [2][email address]

t 1800 838 372

 

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[DVA request email]
2. mailto:[email address]

OAIC - FOI DR,

5 Attachments

Our reference: RQ22/03953

Agency reference: LEX 54130

VERITY PANE

Sent by email: [1][FOI #9424 email]

Extension of time application by Department of Veterans' Affairs

Dear Ms Pane

I write to advise that on 31 October 2022 the Office of the Australian
Information Commissioner (the OAIC) received an application from the
Department of Veterans' Affairs (DVA) for an extension of time, to
process your FOI request of 1 October 2022.

 

DVA has applied for an extension of time under s 15AB of the Freedom of
Information Act 1982 (Cth) because your request is considered to be
voluminous and complex.

 

DVA has advised the OAIC that:

 

·       On 1 October 2022, DVA received your FOI request.

·       Due to staff shortages, there was significant delay in registering
the request.

·       The relevant business area advised the processing officer that the
scope is broad in nature.

·       The request is considered voluminous as the request is broad and
could relate to an undefined number of client records within DVA’s
database.

·       The request is considered complex as the information is not held
in a discrete document, and therefore retrieval of the requested
documentation would involve a manual review process of each client.

·       Further time is required for the business area to provide further
detail on the required process for document retrieval, and to allow for
the processing officer to action the request accordingly.

 

DVA has requested an extension to 30 November 2022. I will take any
comments you may have to make into account when deciding the application.

 

Please respond to this email by close of business 25 November 2022. If I
do not hear from you by this date, the decision maker will make a decision
on the basis of the information provided to me by the DVA.

 

You will be notified of the decision once the matter has been finalised.

 

Further information about extension of time requests may be found on our
website at [2]Extensions of time.

Contact

If you have any questions regarding this email please contact us via email
to [3][email address]. Please quote OAIC reference: RQ22/03953 in all
correspondence.

 

Kind regards

 

Noah Harris

[4][IMG]   Intake and Early Resolution Team

Freedom of Information Regulatory Group

Office of the Australian Information
Commissioner

GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001  |
 [5]oaic.gov.au

1300 363 992 [6][email address]
[7][IMG] | [8][IMG] | [9][IMG] |   [10]Subscribe to OAICnet newsletter

 

Notice:

The information contained in this email message and any attached files may
be confidential information, and may also be the subject of legal
professional privilege. If you are not the intended recipient any use,
disclosure or copying of this email is unauthorised. If you received this
email in error, please notify the sender by contacting the department's
switchboard on 1300 488 064 during business hours (8:30am - 5pm Canberra
time) and delete all copies of this transmission together with any
attachments.

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[FOI #9424 email]
2. https://www.oaic.gov.au/freedom-of-infor...
3. mailto:[email address]
4. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
5. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
6. mailto:[email address]
7. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
8. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
9. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
10. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...

OAIC - FOI DR,

6 Attachments

Our reference: RQ22/03953

Agency reference: LEX 54130

Ms Verity Pane

By email: [1][FOI #9424 email]

cc: [2][email address]

Extension of time under s 15AB

Dear Ms Pane

Please find attached an extension of time decision relating to your FOI
request with the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (the Department). A copy
of this decision has been provided to the Department today.

 

Kind regards

Avi Selvarajah

 

 

[3][IMG]   Intake and Early Resolution Team

Freedom of Information Regulatory Group

Office of the Australian Information
Commissioner

GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001  |
 [4]oaic.gov.au

1300 363 992 [5][email address]
[6][IMG] | [7][IMG] | [8][IMG] |   [9]Subscribe to OAICnet newsletter

 

 

Notice:

The information contained in this email message and any attached files may
be confidential information, and may also be the subject of legal
professional privilege. If you are not the intended recipient any use,
disclosure or copying of this email is unauthorised. If you received this
email in error, please notify the sender by contacting the department's
switchboard on 1300 488 064 during business hours (8:30am - 5pm Canberra
time) and delete all copies of this transmission together with any
attachments.

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[FOI #9424 email]
2. mailto:[email address]
3. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
4. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
5. mailto:[email address]
6. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
7. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
8. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
9. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...

Attn OAIC - FOI DR,

Yet again the OAIC approves an extension of time to DVA who again intentionally let the decision go deemed after the extension of time expires.

DVA provided only one full day's notice of its s 15AA request while putting in a s 15AB request to the OAIC at the same time. If that wasn't enough of a clue the persistent misuse of such s 15AB extensions by DVA the continuing practice of DVA to take such s 15AB extensions only to not give decision by that date is.

As the decision is deemed no charges can apply and IC review is the only method of progressing it, which the OAIC will stall for two-four years before DVA issue a last minute s 55G substitution to avoid an adverse IC review decision that the OAIC goes to great lengths to avoid doing to facilitate DVA's ongoing abuse of its FOI Act obligations.

As a deemed decision is an access refusal decision I apply for IC review of LEX 54130.

Verity Pane

OAIC - FOI DR,

6 Attachments

Dear Ms Pane

 

I acknowledge receipt of your email attached.

I have interpreted your email to be that you wish to proceed to lodge an
IC review of the Department’s deemed decision.

 

If that is correct, could you please proceed to complete the IC Review
application smart form located here [1]Information Commissioner Review
Application form (business.gov.au)

 

Further information on [2]applying for IC review is available on the OAIC
[3]website.  Any application for IC review would need to be made within 60
days of the agency’s decision or deemed decision.

 

Kind regards

Avi Selvarajah

 

[4][IMG]   Intake and Early Resolution Team

Freedom of Information Regulatory Group

Office of the Australian Information
Commissioner

GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001  |
 [5]oaic.gov.au

1300 363 992 [6][email address]
[7][IMG] | [8][IMG] | [9][IMG] |   [10]Subscribe to OAICnet newsletter

 

 

Notice:

The information contained in this email message and any attached files may
be confidential information, and may also be the subject of legal
professional privilege. If you are not the intended recipient any use,
disclosure or copying of this email is unauthorised. If you received this
email in error, please notify the sender by contacting the department's
switchboard on 1300 488 064 during business hours (8:30am - 5pm Canberra
time) and delete all copies of this transmission together with any
attachments.

References

Visible links
1. https://forms.business.gov.au/smartforms...
2. https://www.oaic.gov.au/freedom-of-infor...
3. https://www.oaic.gov.au/
4. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
5. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
6. mailto:[email address]
7. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
8. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
9. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
10. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...

We don't know whether the most recent response to this request contains information or not – if you are Verity Pane please sign in and let everyone know.