Information rights and data protection: appeal against the Information Commissioner

How to appeal to a Tribunal against the Information Commissioner's Office or ask the Tribunal to direct a response if you have not heard from the Information Commissioner’s Office.

What you can appeal against

You can appeal if you consider that a decision notice issued made by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) on your freedom of information or other information request is wrong. You can also appeal against certain decisions made under the Data Protection Act 2018.

You can ask the tribunal to direct a response if you have not heard from the ICO three months after making a complaint under Section 165 of the Data Protection Act 2018.

Your appeal may relate to a request under:

  • freedom of information legislation
  • environmental information regulations

You can also appeal to the tribunal if the Information Commissioner serves you with:

  • an information notice
  • an assessment notice
  • an enforcement notice
  • a penalty notice
  • a penalty variation notice

under the Data Protection Act 2018 about your handling of personal data.

You can also apply to the tribunal to direct the ICO respond to your complaint if you made a complaint that there has been a breach of Part 3 or 4 of the Data Protection Act 2018 involving data about you and you have received no outcome or up-date after three months .

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 or enforcement ntoice and any other relevant documents, such as the date of your complaint to the ICO in Data Protection cases.

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: 020 3936 8963

Tribunal staff can explain how the process works, but they cannot 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:

You can find the right to apply for a direction to the ICO in:

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

Published 19 December 2014
Last updated 10 September 2018 + show all updates
  1. Changes to include appeals and applications within the Data Protection Act 2018.

  2. Added reference to reuse of public sector information regulations 2015

  3. First published.