Right to Information
The Right to Information Act 2009 (the RTI Act) gives you a right to apply for access to documents held by government agencies and Ministers.
QLeave is committed to providing the public access to information about the services we provide, our priorities, our policies and more.
QLeave has a publication scheme that enables the proactive release of information to stakeholders and includes information that we publish on a regular basis, as well as information that has been released under Right to Information legislation.
Right to Information applications can be made on the Queensland Government Right to Information and Information Privacy Access Application form (see below). The application must be:
- in the approved form and be accompanied by the application fee
- give sufficient information concerning the information and/or document requested to enable the responsible officer of the agency or the Minister to identify the information/document and
- state an address to which notices under the Act may be sent to the applicant.
If the application relates to access to a document containing personal information of the applicant, the applicant must provide with the application, or within 10 business days after making the application, evidence of identity or any applicant’s agent’s authorisation and evidence of the identity for the agent. Click here to open the Right to Information and Information Privacy Application form.
Applications should be sent to:
PO Box 315
Virginia BC QLD 4014
The application fee for requests to access documents under Right to Information is $48.00. GST is not applicable to application fees or charges.
Charges payable for processing and accessing a non-personal document are:
- time spent in searching or retrieving a document, or making or doing things related to making a decision on an application for access - $7.45 for each 15 minutes or part thereof
- A4 size photocopies (black and white) - $0.25 for each page
- other forms of access – an amount that is not more than the actual cost incurred by the Authority in giving access to the document.
A charge is not payable if the total amount of time spent processing your application is 5 hours or less.
What is a Charges Estimate Notice?
If it appears that the time spent on processing your non-personal application will be more than five hours, you will receive written notice that a charge is payable and a charges estimate notice of the amount of the charge. The Authority will advise you of your right to contend that the charge has been wrongly assessed or should not be imposed.
You have 20 business days in which to advise the Authority in writing that you:
- agree to pay the charge
- narrow the application
- withdraw the application
- contend that the charge has been wrongly assessed, or should not be imposed, or both, providing reasons.
Failure to respond within 20 days will be treated as a deemed withdrawal of the application.
Waiver of Charges
A waiver of charges on grounds of financial hardship is available to individuals and non-profit organisations able to establish, on the basis of documentary evidence that they are in financial hardship.
The criteria prescribed for determining whether individuals are in financial hardship is whether they are a holder of a concession card. “Concession card” is defined to mean a health care card or pensioner concession card issued under the Social Security Act (Cth) or a pensions concession card issued under the Veteran’s Entitlements Act 1986 (Cth).
A certified copy of your concession card (both sides) is required. If you lodge your application in person, the original concession card must be presented. An officer will take a photocopy of the card and note that the copy sighted is a copy of the original card.
If an application for waiver is posted in the mail, a certified copy of the applicant’s concession card must be enclosed. The copy may be certified by a Commissioner for Declarations, Justice of the Peace or solicitor.
“Non-profit” organisation” means an organisation that is not carried on for the profit or gain of its individual members. For example, charities, churches, clubs, environmental protection agencies.
The criteria for establishing financial hardship include:
- the nature and size of the organisation’s funding base
- the amount of the organisation’s liquid funds
Documentary evidence is required to show that the organisation is not carried on for the profit or gain of its individual members and proof that the organisation is in financial hardship.
When will the application be processed?
QLeave must acknowledge the application within 10 business days of receipt. QLeave has 25 business days in which to make a decision. This period can be extended if consultation with a third party is required. You will be notified in writing of any applicable charges.
What about consultation?
When processing Right to Information applications, it may become necessary for the decision-maker to consult with a third party or parties, if the release of the documents in question may reasonably be expected to be of substantial concern to that party. While the views of the third party are taken into account, the final decision whether to release information to the applicant lies with the decision maker.
If the third party is dissatisfied with the decision in relation to those documents, they may seek a review of the decision. The documents in question will not be provided to the applicant until the rights of the review of the third party have expired and not been exercised or the review application is decided.
What happens when access is granted?
You will be notified in writing of the decision to grant access. If you have been granted access to documents, you will be provided with a copy of the documents or you may wish to inspect the documents. In some cases, another form may be more appropriate, such as listening to a tape recording or watching a video. If for some reason copies of documents cannot be made and sent to you, the decision maker will discuss with you how, when and where you can view the material.
What if I am refused access?
If you are refused access to a document; or the document is exempt in full or in part QLeave must give you written reasons for the decision and advise you of your rights of appeal.
What are my rights of appeal?
If you are not satisfied with any decision about your application, you have a choice to ask for either an internal review to QLeave or external review to the Office of the Information Commissioner.
Internal review (Optional)
If you choose the option of applying for an Internal Review you must apply to QLeave within 20 business days of being advised of the decision. There is no fee or charge payable by an applicant for requesting an internal review of the decision. An application for review must be in writing. A person who is not less senior to the original decision-maker will review your application and inform you of the review decision within 20 business days.
You may choose to apply directly to the Office of the Information Commissioner for external review of an original decision instead of applying for internal review. Applications may be sent to the Office of the Information Commissioner, PO Box 10143, Adelaide Street, Brisbane QLD 4000.
However, if you have applied for internal review to QLeave and are dissatisfied with the decision, you may apply for an external review within 20 business days of QLeave’s decision. The Information Commissioner may overturn or uphold the decision made on your application or try to mediate a settlement between the parties.
No fee or charge is payable for requesting an external review.
What is Information Privacy?
The Information Privacy Act 2009 (the IP Act):
- gives you a right to apply to access and amend your own personal information
- details the privacy principles public sector agencies must comply with
- establishes the Privacy Commissioner as a deputy to the Information Commissioner with particular responsibility for Information Privacy in Queensland
The IP Act also provides a formal mechanism for a person to apply to access or amend their own personal information.
Click here to open the Information Privacy Amendment Application form.
There are 11 Information Privacy Principles (IPPs) for Queensland public sector agencies which regulate how personal information is collected, secured, used and disclosed by Queensland public sector agencies.
Personal Information held by QLeave
QLeave collects, stores and uses client personal information required for the administration of the Acts. Client personal information includes:
- industry workers' personal information, for example name, address, occupation, business type, income data and work history
- industry employers' personal information, for example name, address, occupation and business type
- portable long service leave levy payers' personal information, for example name, address, telephone number, project address and project value.
Vendor personal information includes information to allow normal business processes to take place, for example name, address for payment and bank account details to allow for electronic payment of accounts.