Information Access Fact Sheets and other guidance

The IPC publishes useful resources to assist public sector agencies and citizens with information access laws in NSW. Click below to expand and view the resources. 

Your right to access government information in NSW (Translations available)
In NSW, you have a legal right to access most government information under the GIPA Act.

How to access your personal information from government agencies
You can ask for your personal information from a public sector agency using either the PPIP Act or the GIPA Act.

Simplified guide to information access
This fact sheet can assist you to make an application for information under the GIPA Act.

NEW Frequently asked questions for citizens: What the IPC can and cannot do
To assist the public with understanding the scope of the IPC’s role, this fact sheet has been designed to address some of the common issues and requests made to the IPC.

Open access information for citizens
A guide to open access information that agencies must make available.

Agency Information Guides and the public
Provides information for members of the NSW public about what an AIG is, where an agency’s AIG can be found, and how to make a complaint about an AIG.

Frequently asked questions: informal release of information
This fact sheet is designed to address issues or questions you may have when considering asking for information from an agency informally or when an agency offers to release information informally.

Changes to GIPA Act in 2018 for citizens
This fact sheet has been developed to inform citizens of the impact of the GIPA Act amendments that came into effect on 28 November 2018, to their GIPA applications.

GIPA Act fees and charges
Fees and charges for formal applications for information.

Timeframes and extensions for deciding access applications under the GIPA Act
This fact sheet is intended to assist applicants and agencies in understanding the requirements of section 57 of the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (GIPA Act). It provides guidance on the timeframes for deciding access applications, including circumstances in which extensions may be required or sought, and other special conditions that may extend the decision making period. 

State Owned Corporations (SOCs) and your right to government and personal information
This fact sheet has been designed to provide citizens in NSW information about how information access and privacy laws apply to State Owned Corporations.

Accessing a deceased person’s information under the GIPA Act
This fact sheet outlines factors relevant to an application to access a deceased person’s records under the GIPA Act.

UPDATED Digital records and the GIPA Act
This fact sheet provides guidance about the definition of record, in particular digital records under the GIPA Act and what it means for agencies. It also outlines the importance of agencies maintaining good digital recordkeeping practices to ensure it is able to comply with its legislative obligations. 

UPDATED Automated decision-making, digital government and preserving information access rights
This fact sheet provides guidance to agencies on the release of information in relation to the use of automated decision-making systems.

Complaints about the actions of agencies
The purpose of this fact sheet is to provide guidance about the lodging of complaints to the Information Commissioner regarding the conduct of agencies under the Government Information (Information Commissioner) Act 2009 NSW (GIIC Act).

Your review rights under the GIPA Act
Your rights to request a review of a decision made by a government agency.

Internal reviews under the GIPA Act
If you disagree with an agency decision about an access application, you may be able to apply to the agency for an internal review of that decision.

External review by the Information Commissioner
How to apply for an external review with the NSW Information Commissioner.

Information Commissioner’s right of appearance in the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal
This fact sheet has been prepared to provide citizens and agencies information about the Information Commissioner's right to appear and be heard in the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal in any administrative review of an agency decision under the GIPA Act.

Third party consultation
For individuals or organisations to explain why they are being consulted by a government agency and the rights under the GIPA Act.

Role of Right to Information Officers
Right to Information Officers are government agency staff who have been specific authority to meet the day to day obligations under the GIPA Act.

Monitoring compliance with the GIPA Act
To inform agencies and citizens how the IPC approaches its monitoring, auditing and reporting functions.

How to make a complaint about us
How you can make a complaint about us.

Legal professional privilege
Understanding the test that agencies should apply when relying on this clause to refuse access to information applied for under the GIPA Act.

Restraint orders under the GIPA Act
An agency, the Minister or the Information Commissioner may apply to the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal for an order to restrain a person from making unmeritorious access applications.

Offences under the GIPA Act
The purpose of this fact sheet is to raise awareness of Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (GIPA Act) rights and responsibilities, highlight the offence provisions and the circumstances and evidence that may enliven consideration of these offence provisions, and inform members of the public and agencies of the IPC’s role and procedures in dealing with allegations that offences under the GIPA Act have been committed.

Information for applicants on unreasonable and substantial diversion of resources
This fact sheet is designed to assist citizens where an agency has advised that the scope of the access application is too broad under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (GIPA Act).

UPDATED Applying for complaints information
This fact sheet is designed to assist citizens in seeking access to complaints information under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (GIPA Act).

Applying for Government Recruitment Information
This fact sheet is designed to assist candidates in seeking access to information under the GIPA Act following their participation in a recruitment process with a NSW government agency.

UPDATED Applying for workplace investigation information
This fact sheet is designed to assist citizens in seeking access to workplace investigation information under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (GIPA Act).

Accessing information held by a contractor providing government services
This fact sheet provides information to applicants seeking information that may be held by a private sector or non-government organisation (NGO) providing services on behalf of a government agency to assist applicants to understand how section 121 of the GIPA Act affects them.

Tips for framing your information access application
This checklist includes key information that is often overlooked by applicants and can potentially cause their application to be rejected specifically due to an unreasonable and substantial diversion of resources for the agency.

Care Leavers: Making an application for out-of-home care records under the GIPA Act
This checklist is to assist care leavers when making an application for access to their out-of-home care (OOHC) records under the GIPA Act. This checklist provides tips for framing a formal request for access to OOHC records.

Animation - Ways to access government held information in NSW
The IPC has developed an animation for citizens to help them understand the four pathways citizens can take to seek access to information held by NSW public sector agencies.

Animation - Accessing government information in Australia
This animation provides information on citizen's rights to access government information in Australia. It was released as part of Right to Know Week NSW 2021 and is a joint animation with the Association of Information Access Commissioners.

NEW Animation - e-Governance and Digital Government
Government service delivery in NSW is increasingly digital, and more information is being collected, stored and applied using digital technology. Modern democratic governments allow citizens to participate in decision-making and they must be accountable. By harnessing technology, governments can be more participatory and more accountable. In this way, e-Government can evolve into e-Governance.

NEW Animation - Artificial Intelligence, e-Governance and access to information
Increasingly, government information is held digitally, and this information and other data is used to make important decisions about services and policies. These decisions can also be made using technology including AI. e-Governance requires governments to tell citizens what information they have and how decisions are made, including decisions that are informed by AI.

Advancing the objects of the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (NSW): an international comparative evaluation of measures used to promote government information release 
The report, commissioned through the University of Technology, Sydney provides an insight into the types of practical mechanisms utilised in selected international jurisdictions to promote open government through information sharing and citizen engagement.

Conditions Enabling Open Data and Promoting a Data Sharing Culture 2017 
This UNSW Law Report was commissioned by the NSW Information Commissioner and NSW Open Data Advocate to provide contemporary insights to support the promotion of Open Government and Open Data. To do so the Report analysed legislation, policy, regulatory settings, roles and responsibilities for leadership, culture and operations in leading jurisdictions as identified in the Open Data Barometer Report.

NSW Information Commissioner's 10 Year GIPA Data Analysis Overview 2010-2020
The Information Commissioner released a report with analysis, key findings, and recommendations from ten years’ of GIPA data since inception of the Act.