Freedom of Information Act 2000 Explanatory Notes

Section 11: Means by which communication to be made

53.This section permits an applicant to express a preference as to the means of communication of information under section 1.

54.Subsection (1) provides that where the applicant expresses a preference for the communication of the information in one of 3 specified ways the public authority must provide the information in accordance with that preference so far as is reasonably practicable. The applicant is not restricted to one option but may, for example, inspect and take a copy. Subsection (2) provides that cost may be taken into account in considering whether it would be reasonable to comply with the applicant’s wishes.

55.Subsection (3) requires an authority to give reasons for not complying with an applicant’s expressed wishes.

56.Subsection (4) provides that, subject to the wishes of the applicant and cost, an authority may communicate information in any reasonable form taking the circumstances into account. Information may be provided on tape or other suitable means if considered appropriate.

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