How to make an FOI request
If you wish to make a request under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) for access to one or more documents held by the ACMA, your request must:
- be in writing (there is no special form)
- state that the request is an application under the FOI Act
- provide enough information about each document you are seeking so we can identify it
- give details of how notices under the FOI Act may be sent to you, such as a postal address, an email address or a fax number
You can ask someone else to make an FOI request on your behalf. If you do this, you must give that person written consent.
If you are making an FOI request on behalf of another person, you must give us a written authority from that person.
How to send a request
- You may deliver it or post it by pre-paid post to the ACMA (marked to the attention of the FOI Coordinator) at an address set out below
- By email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Level 5 The Bay Centre
65 Pirrama Road
Pyrmont NSW 2009
Red Building, Benjamin Offices
Belconnen ACT 2617
Level 32, Melbourne Central Tower
360 Elizabeth Street
Melbourne VIC 3000
PO Box Q500
Queen Victoria Building
PO Box 78
PO Box 13112
Melbourne VIC 8010
Time for processing your request
We must notify you about our decision on access within 30 days of receiving your request, unless that period is extended or suspended in accordance with the FOI Act.
Charges for processing your request
You do not have to pay an application fee when you make a request under the FOI Act.
However, we may impose charges for processing your request. This might be for the time spent searching for and retrieving documents, decision-making time, photocopying and postage.
You will not be charged for processing if your request is for access to documents that contain only personal information about you.
The most common charges are:
Search and retrieval — time we spend searching for or retrieving a document
|$15 per hour|
Decision-making — time we spend deciding to grant or refuse a request, including examining documents, consulting with other parties and making deletions
First five hours: Nil
$0.10 per page
Delivery — posting or delivering a copy of a document at your request
Actual cost of postage or delivery
If we decide to charge you, we will give you a written estimate and the basis of our calculation. Where the estimated charge is between $20 and $100, we may ask you to pay a deposit of $20, or where the estimated charge exceeds $100, we may ask you to pay a 25 per cent deposit before we process your request.
You can ask for the charge to be waived or reduced for any reason, including financial hardship or on the grounds of public interest. If you do, you should explain your reasons and you may need to provide some evidence.
Access to documents
We may refuse access to any document if it falls within a specific exemption or an exception set out in the FOI Act. For example, you are not entitled to documents under the FOI Act if their disclosure could reasonably be expected to prejudice the conduct of an investigation, or if they would breach confidentially obligations.
You are also not entitled to obtain access to documents under the FOI Act if they are available to the public for a fee or other charge, or if they are in the collection of certain institutions, such as library material in the National Library of Australia.
If you disagree with our decision
You can write to us and ask that we reconsider our decision through an internal review. Another officer in our agency will conduct the internal review. We will advise you of the new decision within 30 days of receiving your request.
Information Commissioner review and complaints
You can ask the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) to review our original decision or the internal review decision. This must be done within 60 days of the decision date (or 30 days after you are notified if you are an affected third party). The OAIC can affirm or vary the decision or make a new decision.
If you are unhappy with the way we have handled your request, you can complain to the OAIC who may investigate our actions.
More information on making applications for OAIC review, or lodging complaints, is available at the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner
Any enquiries about making a request, or the processing of a request, under the FOI Act should be directed to the FOI Coordinator by telephone on (03) 9963 6800 or by email at email@example.com.