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current item indicator  Freedom of Information


Freedom of Information

Making a request / Transferring requests / Consultation with third parties / Fees / Timescales / Complaints procedure

Making a request

Applicants who wish to make a request for information from the Competition Commission should take the following steps:

Your request for information must be in writing and must state:

  • Your name
  • Your return address
  • A description of the information that is requested

You can submit your request to the Head of Planning by e-mail at or to the following address:

Head of Planning
Competition Commission
Victoria House, Southampton Row
London WC1B 4AD

If you require any assistance in completing your request for information, you may direct your request for assistance to Gail Sugden, Head of Planning, e-mail: foi@competition-commission.gsi.gov.uk Tel: 020 7271 0145

Transferring requests

If you have requested information which the CC believes is held by another public authority, it may be appropriate for you to re-apply to the public authority. Alternatively, the CC may transfer your request for information to another public authority. Where the CC decides that it is appropriate to transfer your request to another public authority, the CC will first check that the other public authority holds the information which you have requested. If you wish to be notified before the CC transfers your request for information to another public authority, you should state this in your application.

Consultation with third parties

The CC may need to consult third parties (including another public authority) in order to reach a decision on whether the requested information can be released. If you wish to be notified before the CC consults a third party about your request for information, you should state this in your application.

Fees

The CC will charge a fee for complying with a request for information in accordance with the The Freedom of Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004 . Guidance on the application of these regulations is provided by the Department for Constitutional Affairs. A summary of the guidance is also available

You will receive a Fees Notice which sets out the amount you must pay to the CC.

If the cost of locating, retrieving and extracting the information is £450 or less, the CC may charge for photocopying, printing and postage costs. If the cost is more than £450, the CC is not obliged to comply with your request. However, the CC will consider whether it is possible to provide any information within the cost ceiling of £450. It will also consider whether it is reasonable to answer your request and charge an appropriate fee.

Timescales

Under the Freedom of Information Act, the CC is required to respond to your request for information within 20 working days following the date on which your request was received. Furthermore, the Act makes a number of provisions for extra time to be taken in responding to a request, for example:

  • The timescale is put on hold if, after initial consideration of your request, a fee is requested. When a request for payment is sent to you, the 20-day working deadline is put on hold and will start running again (from where it stopped, not back to the beginning of the 20 days) when the appropriate fee is received.
  • If the information being sought has to be considered under an exemption to which the public interest test applies, then the timescale is extended by a “reasonable period”. The CC will, however, tell you within the 20-day period which exemption(s) it believes apply to the information requested, and give you its estimate of the date by which it expects to reach a decision regarding the application of this exemption.

Complaints procedure

If you are dissatisfied with the CC’s response to your request for information (including a decision to levy a fee) you may discuss the decision with the official who dealt with your request. However, if this informal discussion does not resolve your complaint, you may submit your complaint in writing to the CC’s Chief Executive, either by e-mail to david.saunders@cc.gsi.gov.uk or by post to the following address:

Chief Executive
Competition Commission
Victoria House, Southampton Row
London WC1B 4AD

The Chief Executive will consider your complaint, and will confirm, reverse or amend the decision. He will advise you in writing of the outcome of your complaint.

If you are dissatisfied with the Chief Executive’s decision, you have the right to apply to the Information Commissioner for a decision as to whether the CC has dealt with your request for information in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act. An application may be made to the Information Commissioner’s Office by post to the following address:

FOI Compliance Team (complaints)
Wycliffe House,
Water Lane, Wilmslow
Cheshire SK9 5AF

The Information Commissioner’s telephone help line is 01625 545 745 and 0845 630 60 60.


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