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Tips for requesting information

There is no specific format or style you need to use to make your request. You do not need to mention the Official Information Act (or OIA) to make a request.

How do I know if you are the right agency?

The Ministry of Justice’s directory of official information outlines information held by different agencies.

If we do not have the information you have asked for and we think that another agency or Minister may have the information, we will transfer your request to them. We may also transfer your request if we believe the information you have asked for is more closely connected with the functions of another agency or Minister.

What can I request?

The OIA sets out your rights to request official information. ‘Official information’ means any information held by DPMC including:

  • Reports, memos, letters, notes, advice and emails
  • Materials like tape recordings, videos, or computer records
  • Internal policies or guidelines for decision making, and
  • Reasons for decisions made about you.

Can I request information about myself?

As an individual you can request information about yourself. Requests for personal information are processed under the Privacy Act.  You can find more information about privacy requests on the privacy page.  We will always make sure to tell you whether we have responded to your request under the OIA and/or Privacy Act.

Companies or incorporated societies can also request information about themselves. This is considered under the OIA rather than the Privacy Act.

Can I request information in a specific format?

You can ask for information to be provided to you in a specific format. For example, you can ask for oral information to be provided to you or to review information in person (inspect files). You can also ask for the information to be provided in an electronic or paper format.

If we don’t provide it in the way you requested, we must explain why, and you can make a complaint to the Office of the Ombudsman if you are dissatisfied.

What can I do to speed up the process?

Before requesting information it is worth checking that we have not already published the information you are interested in, in our publications section.

If the information you are after is not available on the website you can make a request to us for this information.  It will help us to respond as quickly as possible if your request is specific – if you clearly tell us what you are after and outline a time period you are interested in.

You may also want to tell us why you are seeking this information – you don’t have to do this, but it may make it easier for us to identify all information relevant to your request.

Last updated: 
Thursday, 22 June 2017

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