Documents Available

Freedom of Information

This page contains information required to be published under Part II of the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (the FOI Act).

Functions of the Victorian Ombudsman’s Office

Our mission, purpose and governing legislation is set out in the About section of this website.
 
The Office:
  • receives complaints and disclosures
  • makes enquiries into and investigates administrative actions
  • receives and assesses disclosures made under the Protected Disclosure Act
  • investigates protected disclosure complaints
  • reports on the outcomes of investigations
  • makes recommendations
  • tables reports in Parliament.

Categories of documents held

The Office holds:
  • reports dealing with issues of public interest, tabled in Parliament and posted on our website
  • internal administrative and operational documents
  • internal policy and procedural documents
  • documents concerning the development or implementation of policy and legislation
  • personnel and human resources documents
  • financial records
  • documents obtained or created in the course of conducting investigations or making enquiries, including complaints, correspondence, file notes and reports
  • documents relating to our functions under the Protected Disclosure Act and the Whistleblowers Protection Act
  • fact sheets, brochures and promotional material.

Publicly available information

The Office holds a range of information that is available to the public, including:
  • fact sheets
  • answers to frequently asked questions
  • information about the availability and content of community education and public sector workshops
  • statements about the Ombudsman’s role, responsibilities, jurisdiction, governing legislation and reporting to Parliament
  • information about the Protected Disclosure Act
  • media releases
  • presentations made by our staff
  • tabled parliamentary reports
  • the complaint handling good practice guide.
This material is available on our website and may also be obtained by post or in person by telephoning or attending the Office’s reception at:
 
Level 2 570 Bourke Street
Melbourne VIC 3000
9613 6222 or 1800 806 314 (toll free for regional callers only)
www.ombudsman.vic.gov.au

Literature available by subscription

Media releases are available by subscription. Copies of reports tabled in Parliament are mailed to individuals who request them.
 

FOI arrangements

Request for documents

The FOI Act states that requests must be made in writing and provide enough information for our staff to identify the document you seek access to. You can simply send us a letter describing the document you would like. You must also pay the application fee.

Request for amendment of personal records

A request for a correction or amendment of personal information contained in a document held by the Office must be made in writing. It should specify how and why the person making the request believes the information to be incorrect, incomplete, misleading or out of date and specify the amendments that they wish to have made.
 
A person may only request correction of their own personal information or, in the case of a deceased person, only their next of kin may make such a request. Please provide identification to demonstrate that you are entitled to request amendment to personal records.  

Making your request

You can post your request, or make a request online.
 
Post
Address your request to:
FOI Officer
Victorian Ombudsman
Level 2 570 Bourke Street
Melbourne VIC 3000
 
Online
Make a request here
 
Agencies must assist applicants to make a request which complies with the FOI Act. If you are unable to put your application in writing, or require other assistance to make your application, please phone our office on (03) 9613 6222  or 1800 806 314.

Application fee and charges

An application fee of $27.90 is required unless that fee is waived because it would cause hardship to the applicant.
 
If you make your FOI application by post, you can pay with a cheque made out to the Victorian Ombudsman.  If you make your application online, you can pay by credit card.
 
Charges may be made in accordance with the Freedom of Information (Access Charges) Regulations 2014.

Review of decisions

Applicants may seek review of FOI decisions made by the Ombudsman.   Depending on the exemption applied to the document, the review application must be made to either the FOI Commissioner or the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal.

Exemptions

The FOI Act creates a right for the public to access certain documents held by public sector agencies, subject to certain exemptions in the FOI Act. Section 29A of the Ombudsman Act means that the FOI Act does not apply to certain documents held by the Office, including:
  • a complaint, a referred complaint, a referred matter, or a matter referred to the Ombudsman by Parliament
  • an enquiry or an investigation under the Ombudsman Act
  • a recommendation made by the Ombudsman under the Ombudsman Act
  • a report or draft report made under the Ombudsman Act.