FOIMan sums up the things you need to know about key sections of the Freedom of Information Act.

These blog posts were originally written between 2013 and 2015 under the Exemption Index banner, and they summarise the key sections of the Freedom of Information Act. Each post provides:

  • a summary of the section
  • a description of the sort of information likely to be affected
  • the key things that practitioners need to know (e.g. what the case law and guidance says)
  • the key things that requesters and the public need to know (e.g. how you can avoid refusals, when and how to challenge a decision)
  • essential case law
  • recommended reading
  • FOIMan says… – links to other posts I’ve written on the subject (where relevant).

A note of caution – these posts are not routinely kept up-to-date.

A more up-to-date guide to the exemptions can be found in The Freedom of Information Officer’s Handbook.

Section 12 – the appropriate limit
Section 14 – vexatious requests
Section 21 – otherwise accessible
Section 22 – future publication
Section 22A – unpublished research data
Section 23 – security bodies
Section 24 – national security
Section 25 – ministerial certificates supporting s.23 and s.24
Section 26 – defence
Section 27 – international relations
Section 30 – investigations and proceedings
Section 31 – law enforcement
Section 35 – formulation of government policy
Section 36 – effective conduct of public affairs
Section 40 – personal data
Section 41 – provided in confidence
Section 42 – legal professional privilege
Section 43 – commercial interests