Information rights: appeal against the Information Commissioner

How to appeal to a tribunal against an Information Commissioner's Office decision on a freedom of information or other information request.

What you can appeal against

You can appeal if you disagree with an ICO decision on your freedom of information request, and you’re denied access to the information.

You can also appeal against an ICO fine or enforcement notice for breaking the rules around:

  • freedom of information
  • data protection
  • environmental information
  • privacy and electronic communications

The tribunal

Your case will be dealt with by a tribunal in the General Regulatory Chamber.

The tribunal is independent of the government, and will listen to both sides of the argument before it reaches a decision.

They may ask to look at the information in question before deciding if you should see it.

Time limits for appealing

You have 28 days to appeal after the ICO sends you its decision.

If you miss the time limit, you can ask for more time to appeal. Explain why you’re late, and the tribunal will decide if it can still accept your case.

How to appeal

Use the notice of appeal form (includes guidance leaflet).

Include the ICO’s decision notice and any other relevant documents.

Clearly say why you think the ICO’s decision was wrong.

Send the form to or:

General Regulatory Chamber
HM Courts & Tribunals Service
PO Box 9300

Telephone: 0300 123 4504

Tribunal staff can explain how the process works, but they can’t give you legal advice.

What happens next

The tribunal will write to you about the next steps.

Find out more about tribunal hearings and decisions.

List of current cases

New cases are listed on the register of current cases.

Previous decisions

Search the decisions database to see how judges made decisions in previous cases.

Legislation and rules

You can find the right to appeal to the tribunal in the following laws and regulations:

Read detailed rules on how your case will be handled in the:

Published 19 December 2014
Last updated 21 July 2015 + show all updates
  1. Added reference to reuse of public sector information regulations 2015
  2. First published.