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UCD Records Management and Freedom of Information

Aonad Bainistíochta Taifead & Saoráil Faisnéise UCD

How to Make a Request under FOI

The records of University College Dublin are subject to the terms of the Freedom of Information Act. The Act gives individuals a right of access to information held in the records of the University, a right to have personal information held by the University amended if it is found to be incorrect and a right to obtain reasons for decisions made by the University that have materially affected them. It will be necessary to exempt from release certain types of information in some circumstances. There is an appeal procedure in place for requesters who are unhappy with the outcome of their request.

It is essential that the FOI Unit is the first point of contact for all FOI requests.

All requests for information under the FOI Act must

  • be in writing and addressed to the FOI Unit (requests for non-personal information may be e-mailed to the FOI Unit at foi@ucd.ie)
  • or you may download and complete the

    FOI REQUEST APPLICATION FORM
    (or As Gaeilge)
  • state that the request is being made under the FOI Act
  • set out sufficient details to enable the required records to be identified
  • include a copy of your id if the request is for personal information (i.e. driving licence, passport or birth certificate)

Fees charged as follows:

  • In respect of non-personal information, fees may be charged in respect of the time spent in efficiently locating and copying records. No charges may apply in respect of the time spent by the University in considering requests.

The FOI Act provides for fees as follows:

  • Under review

Charges may be waived in the following circumstances:

  • where the cost of collecting and accounting for the fee would exceed the amount of the fee
  • where the information would be of particular assistance to the understanding of an issue of national importance, or,
  • in the case of personal information, where such charges would not be reasonable having regard to the means of the requester.

On receipt of a request the FOI Unit will

  • log the request
  • check that the request comes within the scope of the FOI Act
  • ensure that the request receives consideration by the appropriate member of staff
  • notify the requester of the outcome/decision

The University has established a network of decision-makers and reviewers within Faculties and Administration. They will consider requests and will make decisions whether or not to release the requested information, observing the requirements of the Act to protect privacy and the public interest.

Under sections 15 and 16 of the Act, the University publishes information about its structure and organisation, functions, powers and duties, its services and the rules, procedures, practices and guidelines used in decision-making. This is to facilitate access and to promote openness and accountability. This information is available on application to the FOI Unit and on the FOI website.

For members of staff:

  • If you are contacted by an individual wishing to make a request under FOI, please refer them directly to the FOI Unit.
  • If you receive a request in writing, which cites the FOI Act, please re-direct it IMMEDIATELY to the FOI Unit, where it will be processed in accordance with statutory regulations.
  • If you are not sure about the nature or status of a request for information please contact the FOI Unit.
  • If your job entails giving out routine information to staff, students and members of the public, continue to do so. FOI is used only to obtain information NOT routinely available.