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Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002

Section 10 – Time for compliance

44.This section sets out the timescales within which an authority must comply with a request for information under the Act.

45.An authority must respond promptly to a request for information meeting the criteria under the Act. In any event, it must respond no later than the twentieth working day from the date of receipt of the original request, or from the date of receipt of any additional information requested by the authority.

46.Where the Keeper of the Records of Scotland receives a request for information which falls to be considered under section 22, the Keeper must respond no later than the thirtieth working day from the date of receipt of the original request, or from the date of receipt of any additional information requested by the Keeper. On receipt of a request for information which the transferring authority has not indicated is open, the Keeper will forward a copy of the request to the originating public authority. It is for that authority to decide whether an exemption in Part 2 applies and, where section 2 applies, whether there is an overriding public interest in disclosure, and to advise the Keeper accordingly.

47.In instances when the authority requests a fee from an applicant, the period from the date of issue of the fee request to the date the fee is received is disregarded from the 20 working day timescale (or as the case may be 30 working days).

48.The definition of a “working day” is contained in section 73 of the Act.

49.The Scottish Ministers may make regulations to vary the period (up to a maximum of 60 working days) within which an authority must comply with a request. Those regulations could provide different periods in different cases or give discretion to the Scottish Information Commissioner. Such regulations would be subject to affirmative resolution.

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