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12.5.11 Freedom of Information

Information accessible under freedom of information legislation

Under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (the FOI Act) a person may seek access to documents in the possession of DVA. This may include manuals, guidelines, rules and instructions used by officers in making decisions relating to members of the public. Access may also be gained to information relating to a decision which may adversely affects their interests (or has the potential to do so).

Officers should be alert to the possibility that a person may request access to documents relating to a matter before them. Such requests should be treated as requests under the FOI Act.    

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Requirements of a request for information

Section 15A of the FOI Act requires that a request for information must:

  • be in writing,
  • provide such information concerning the document as is reasonably necessary to enable a responsible officer of the agency to identify it,
  • specify an address in Australia to which notices under the FOI Act may be sent,
  • be sent by post to DVA, or delivered to an officer of DVA, at the address of any office of DVA specified in a current telephone directory, and
  • be accompanied by an application fee payable to the Collector of Public Monies.
Method of accessing information

Documents can be accessed by provision of copies of the documents or by inspection of the documents.

The Department of Veterans' Affairs.

According to section 5 of the MRCA, a member is

  • a member of the Defence Force; or
  • a cadet;
  • a person to whom section 7A applies, or
  • a declared member

who served on or after 1 July 2004