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Inter­nal review

Sec­tion 12 of the Sec­tion 45 Code of Prac­tice of the Free­dom of Infor­ma­tion Act (FOI) places a duty on pub­lic author­i­ties to put a com­plaints process in place to ensure that appli­cants are able to ask the pub­lic author­i­ty for an inter­nal review if they are not con­tent with the pub­lic author­i­ties deci­sion on the release of infor­ma­tion. This pro­vides a first review stage for the applicants.

Appli­cants may be unhap­py with the treat­ment they have received if:

1. Their appli­ca­tion was not dealt with with­in 20 work­ing days.
2. They did not receive all of the infor­ma­tion request­ed.
3. They feel that exemp­tions have been wrong­ly applied.
4. They feel that a fee has been wrong­ly charged.

Internal Review

If Nottingham College refuse to supply the information requested, or the applicant is dissatisfied with our response, or feels that a fee has been applied unfairly they may ask for an internal review of that decision.

The following principles will apply when considering an appeal request:

  • The review will be undertaken by an individual who was not involved in the original request for information – if the FOI contact has not been involved then they will undertake the review, if the FOI contact was involved in the request for information then this will be carried out by the Principal (Finance) or an appropriate representative.
  • If the applicant has not received a response to a request for information within 20 working days it may be regarded that Nottingham College has refused the request – the individual therefore has a right to ask for a review of the lack of response.
  • All reviews will make an assessment of the information released against the information requested and make a full review of the information associated with the original application.
  • The reviewer will discuss the decisions made with the staff members concerned with the original request in order to gain a full picture of how decisions were made.
  • The reviewer may contact the applicant at their own discretion.
  • The reviewer may obtain advice from external sources including legal advice.
  • The conclusion will be summarised and handed to the FOI contact who will log them centrally for future reference.
  • An internal review must be completed before a complaint can be made to the Information Commissioner.

Timescales

The College will endeavour to respond to any review request within 20 working days of having received it. If the review is particularly complex, the requester will be informed in good time of any extension required and be kept up to date with its progress.

Outcomes

An internal review may have three outcomes:

  • The original decision is reversed
  • The original decision is amended
  • The original decision is upheld

Whatever the outcome of the appeal the complainant will be informed in writing with appropriate information about what will be provided should a decision be reversed or amended.

Requesting an internal review

Internal review requests should be submitted within two months of the date of receipt of the response to your original request and should be emailed to freedomofinformation@nottinghamcollege.ac.uk

Making a Complaint to the Information Commissioner’s Office

If you are not content with the outcome of the internal review, you have the right to apply to the Information Commissioner (the independent body who oversees the Freedom of Information Act) at:

Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire SK9 5AF