Application of section 87 RTI Act

Relevant considerations

1. What is the onus on the relevant party?

Under section 44(1) of the RTI Act if an access application is made, an agency should give access to information unless giving access would, on balance, be contrary to the public interest.

a) Agency or Minister

If the decision under review is against disclosure of information, on external review the agency or Minister has the onus of establishing that disclosure of the relevant information would, on balance, be contrary to the public interest.1

b) Relevant third party

If the agency or Minister decides to disclose information contrary to the views of a relevant third party2 or without taking the necessary steps to obtain the views of the relevant third party, the party objecting to disclosure has the onus of establishing that disclosure of the relevant information would, on balance, be contrary to the public interest.3

  • 1 Moon and Department of Health (Unreported, Queensland Information Commissioner, 12 August 2010) at paragraphs 14-15. [up]
  • 2 Section 37 of the RTI Act for the requirement to obtain a relevant third party's views on disclosure of certain information. [up]
  • 3 07UKSD and Department of Environment and Resource Management (Unreported, Queensland Information Commissioner, 23 December 2010) at paragraphs 12-13. [up]

Last updated: March 1, 2012