Making an FOI Application
FOI applications need to be made to the agency that holds the documents you are seeking to access. If you want to get your medical records, it will be the hospital that you attended that holds the documents. If you are seeking police records, you will need make your application to South Australia Police.
Applications to most South Australian state government agencies can be made online using the online Freedom of Information application form. Alternatively you can download hardcopy forms below.
Application to access documents
Below is the standard freedom of information application form to seek access to documents. Go will need to print the form and add the details of the information you want to access. Once you have completed the form it must be sent directly to the state government agency, minister, local council or state university that holds the information you want to access.
If you prefer to write a letter requesting access to documents, your letter must:
- specify that you are making an application under the Freedom of information Act 1991
- include your name and your postal address in Australia
- describe the documents you would like to access
- specify whether the documents contain information about your personal affairs
- request how you want to access the document eg do you wish to inspect the document or do you want a copy
- include the application fee unless you are lodging an application to amend your personal records or you hold a concession card (proof will be required)
- be sent directly to the state government department or agency, minister, local council or state university that holds the information.
Application to access Cabinet documents
Cabinet documents older than 20 years can be sought through freedom of information by applying directly to the relevant agency using the standard application form for access.
Some older Cabinet documents that have been transferred to the custody of State Records may be available to access at the State Records Research Centre.
From 1 October 2009, Cabinet documents between 10 and 20 years old can be accessed under the policy, Premier and Cabinet Circular 31: Disclosure of Cabinet Documents 10 Years or Older. Below is a specific application form for access to these types of Cabinet documents that you can print out and complete. There is also an electronic form you can complete and lodge by email.
For more information about accessing the records of the Cabinet of the South Australian Government please read the following brochure: Access to Cabinet Documents under PC031 brochure (PDF 170KB)
Certain Cabinet documents that are 10 years old are also published on the Department of the Premier and Cabinet website for everyone to access. You do not need to make an application to access these Cabinet documents because they are publically available.
Application to amend personal information
Under freedom of information you can make an application to have documents concerning your personal affairs amended if they are incomplete, incorrect, misleading or out-of-date.
You can download the application form for amendment of personal records from the link below.
Application fees and charges
A freedom of information application for access to documents must be accompanied by the fee as stated in the current application form. However, additional charges may be levied to process your request. Please note that if you hold a concession card, or are otherwise financially disadvantaged, all fees will be waived in accordance with the regulations. Proof will be required.
Full details of fees and charges can be found in the Freedom of information (Fees and Charges) Regulations 2003.
Application processing timeframes
Once a state government agency, minister, local council or state university has received your written application it has up to 30 calendar days in which to process it. In some cases it may be necessary to extend the time limit for processing your application. The agency will notify you if this is the case.
Application to review a decision under FOI
If the agency you apply to refuses you access to all or part of a document you requested access to, you will be informed of the reasons why and advised of your rights to seek a review or appeal.
You can also seek a review or appeal if you have applied for your personal records to be amended under freedom of information and amendment has been refused.
You can download the application form for a review of a freedom of information determination (decision) from the link below.