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Accessing information


Where possible, we will deal with requests for information informally and in the course of normal business. However, there will be circumstances in which either you or we consider that a request for information should be dealt with under the information access legislation. These pages outline the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA) and the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA) , particularly in relation to rights of access, to help you make a formal information request to us.




The DPA establishes a framework of rights and duties designed to safeguard personal information. The rights include that of an individual to request from a ‘data controller’ (such as NCAS/NHSLA) a copy of the personal information held about them. This right of access is subject to a number of exemptions. Please see Data Protection for further details. 




The FOIA provides the public with a general right of access to official information held by public authorities. It also sets out a number of exemptions from the right to know. Please see Freedom of Information for further details. 



Information requests made under the DPA or the FOIA must be in writing. If you need us to assist you in meeting this requirement, please contact the information access team.  


Our internal review process sets out how we deal with complaints about our handling of information requests.


If, at any stage, you are not content with our handling of your request, you may complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). However, in general, the ICO expects the local complaints procedure to be used in the first instance.