Beaumont Hospital

Print Print Page | A | A | A

Legislation for requesting information

The Freedom of Information Act 1997  as amended by the Freedom of Information (Amendment) Act 2003  continues to apply to any FOI request made before the new Act came into effect.   It also applies to any subsequent review or appeal.

On 14 October 2014, the Freedom of Information Act 2014  ("the Act") came into effect. The new Act introduced a number of changes to the Freedom of Information (FOI) scheme.   The Freedom of Information Act 2014 provides that every person has the following legal rights:

  • the right to access official records held by public bodies prescribed under the Act (FOI bodies);
  • the right to have personal information held on them corrected or updated where such information is incomplete, incorrect or misleading; and
  • the right to be given reasons for decisions taken by FOI bodies that affect them.

Any person may make an FOI Request under the Act, and the public body in question must normally respond within 2 weeks (10 working days) with an acknowledgment of the request, and within the 4 weeks (20 working days) following receipt of  the request. In the case of large and/or complex requests this timeframe may be extended by a further 4 weeks.

In the case of requests for Personal Information, the processing of the FOI request will not commence until the required I.D or other verification documents have been received from the Requester.

Under the FOI Act 2014 the Decision Maker may grant full access,  may refuse access  or provide partial access to the  information requested based on specific exemption detailed within the  FOI Act 2014.

Under the Act, the person who has requested the information has the right to appeal an FOI body's decision – initially to an Internal Reviewer who will  be a more senior staff member within the FOI body than the FOI Officer/Decision Maker who made the original decision, and then if the requester is still not satisfied they can make an appeal to the Office of the Information Commissioner. The Information Commissioner's decision in this instance is binding.


Personal  Information – There is no charge for requests for Personal Information/Records, unless there are a significant volume of records.

Non-Personal Information - Section 27 of the Freedom of Information Act 2014 provides for fees and charges for Non Personal Information.

Current Fees
Type of Request or Application Standard Fee *
Reduced Fee **
Initial request for a record Free Free
Internal review €30 €10
Review by Information Commissioner €50 €15
Application for amendment containing incorrect information Free Free
Application for reasons for a decision affecting
Free Free

* There are no fees where you appeal a decision to charge a fee or deposit, or a fee or deposit of a specific amount.

** Reduced fees will apply in respect of medical card holders and third parties who appeal a decision to release their information on public interest grounds.

No fees apply where the request or internal review involves access to your personal records.

Charges for search, retrieval and copying of records

Charges may be applied by the body for the time spent searching for and retrieving records, and for any copying costs incurred in providing requesters with the copies of the records requested. It is unlikely that any charges will be applied in respect of personal records, except where a large number of records are involved.

If the cost of search, retrieval and copying is €100 or less, under the Act no fee is applicable. If the charge exceeds €100, full fees will be requested. The maximum charge for any one request most not exceed €500, however if the estimated cost of search, retrieval and copying is more than €700 the request can be refused, unless it is refined to bring the search, retrieval and copying fees below this limit.

Type of Charge Standard Charge
Search & Retrieval of records
€20 per hour
Photocopying 4 cent per sheet
CD ROM containing copies of documents
Radiograph (x-ray) containing copy of documents

A link to the legislation is provided here for information: Freedom of Information Act, 2014

Further information on FOI is also available from: 

Freedom of Information Central Policy Unit

Department of Public Expenditure and Reform,
Central Policy Unit
Floor 3, 7-9 Merrion Row
Dublin 2
Tel:  +353 1 631 8258
Fax: +353 1 604 5750

Office of the Information Commissioner

18 Lower Leeson Street
Dublin 2
Tel: +353 1 639 5689
Lo-call: 1890 253 238
Fax: +353 1 639 5674 or +353 1 639 5676