FOI release

Breakdown of Freedom of Information requests

A disclosure about the number and nature of FOI requests received.



  • Date requested: 1 April 2011
  • Publish date: 18 April 2011
  • Updated: 26 May 2011


Under the Freedom of Information Act 2000,can the department please disclose the following details regarding it’s FOI requests in each of the last three years (questions 1 to 2) and the number of times the department used a Section 35 exemption or a Section 36 exemption in response to a FOI request (questions 3 to 4):

  1. The number of FOI requests processed by the Department?

  2. The number of FOI requests responded to with:
    * the disclosure of all information requested,
    * the partial disclosure of some information requested and
    * a refusal/failure to disclose any information?

  3. The number of times the department used a Section 35 exemption or a Section 36 exemption in response to a FOI request?

  4. Of those, when the resulting public interest test resulted in:
    * a full disclosure,
    * a partial disclosure,
    * a refusal to disclose?


Under section 21 of the Act, the department is not required to provide information in response to a request if it is already reasonably accessible to the public.

The information requested in questions 1 and 2 of the request can be found on the Ministry of Justice’s website

The statistics for October to December 2010 were published on Thursday 28 April 2011. This information is therefore exempt under section 22. The exemption under Section 22 of the Freedom of Information Act recognises that it must be reasonable in all the circumstances to withhold the information until the date of publication.

Given the necessary preparation and administration involved in publishing the information, it is considered that this publication timetable is reasonable.

In reply to question 3, the department used section 35 and section 36 to withhold information the following number of times:

2008 2009 2010
s.35 21 27 40
s.36 27 50 20

However, the department only records the number of times an exemption is used to withhold information. It does not record how many times an exemption is considered but deemed not to apply, nor how many times the exemption is applied but the public interest test favours disclosure.

Published 18 April 2011