Handling requests for environmental information
Both FOISA and the EIRs give the public access to information. But there are important differences in the way in which requests should be handled the separate regimes. For example:
- the format of information requests: under FOISA, requests for information must be in written or other recordable format; under the EIRs, a verbal request for information may be valid.
- there are different rules when considering withholding information
- the EIRs make provision for the transfer of a request from one authority to another; FOISA doesn't (the requester has to make a new request to the other body).
So when you receive requests for environmental information it's important to respond appropriately under the EIRs.
The Commissioner has produced two different sets of guidance on handling requests under the EIRs.
- For Scottish public authorities which are subject to FOISA and, therefore, the EIRs:
EIRs: Handling requests for environmental information (bodies subject to FOISA)
- For bodies, such as registered social landlords, which are subject to the EIRs, but not to FOISA:
EIR: Handling requests for environmental information (bodies not subject to FOISA)
If you need help to identify the right set for your organisation, please contact us
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