The Freedom of Information Act

Anyone may request access to official documents held by public authorities covered by the Freedom of Information Act. 

The County Governor is responsible for providing guidance and advice on rights under the Freedom of Information Act. This includes providing advice to municipalities. The starting point under the Freedom of Information Act is that a public authority's case documents are publicly accessible. The Act also applies to a number of independent legal entities in which the state has a significant ownership interest, e.g. energy and waste disposal companies.

Denial of access

Any denial of access must be stated in writing and must cite the provision of the Freedom of Information Act that is being used as the basis for withholding the information. Even in cases where the Act does justify the denial of access, the official body in question must consider whether to grant you access to the document or provide you with information from it. This is in line with the so-called principle of greater public access. Confidential information is exempt from freedom-of-information requirements. 

Appealing against a denial of access

You may appeal to the County Governor if your application for access to a document is denied by a municipal or county council authority or by a publicly owned legal entity. If the County Governor is the authority that has denied you access, you should appeal to the Ministry of Government Administration, Reform and Church Affairs (FAD). Any complaint under the Freedom of Information Act should initially be sent to, and handled by, the authority that denied access in the first place.

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