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(This note is not part of the Order)
This Order brings into force provisions of the Constitutional Reform and Governance Act 2010 which amend provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (“the 2000 Act”) concerning information which relates to communications with the Sovereign, the Royal Family and the Royal Household. All the provisions brought into force by this Order come into force on 19th January 2011.
The commenced provisions—
(a)amend the 2000 Act so that information relating to communications with the Sovereign, the heir to the Throne or the second in line to the Throne (and communications made or received on their behalf) is subject to an absolute exemption from disclosure, and information relating to communications with other members of the Royal Family (and communications made or received on their behalf) or the Royal Household is subject to a qualified exemption from disclosure (Schedule 7, paragraphs 2 and 3);
(b)provide for new time limits after which the exemption no longer applies (Schedule 7, paragraph 5(4)); and
(c)provide for the 2000 Act to apply in Northern Ireland as if these amendments had not been made (Schedule 7, paragraph 6).
The 2000 Act will apply to requests for information received by public authorities before 19th January 2011 as it did before these provisions were commenced.
A regulatory impact assessment has not been prepared for this Order as no impact on the private or voluntary sectors is foreseen.
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