What is Freedom of Information (FOI)?

The Freedom of Information Act 2014 (the Act) allows you to request access to information that is held by the CRU and not otherwise publicly available.

Right of access

The Act establishes three statutory rights.

  • A legal right for each person to access information held by public bodies.
  • A legal right for each person to have official information relating to him/herself amended where it is incomplete, incorrect or misleading.
  • A legal right to obtain reasons for decisions affecting oneself.

The right of access does not apply to “exempt records” which are specified in detail in the Act.

This must be consistent with the public interest and the right to privacy of individuals.

Please see the Freedom of Information website to read FOI legislation.

How to make an FOI request

Before you make an FOI request, search our website to see if the information you want is available. If you cannot find the information you want, please email foi@cru.ie.

Formal FOI requests must be in writing.

You can make your request by email to foi@cru.ie

Alternatively, send your FOI request to:

Freedom of Information (FOI) Officer

The Grain House
The Exchange
Belgard Square North
Dublin 24, D24 PXW0

What to put in your request

You should indicate the request is made under the Act, give as much detail as possible in your request and specify the form and manner of access required. This will help our staff to identify relevant records. If you have issues identifying the records you are requesting, we can help you to prepare your request.

When to expect a response

In most cases, a public body must respond to an FOI request no later than 4 weeks from the receipt of a valid request.

Fees and charges

There are fees and charges applied to some types of FOI requests.

For personal information requests there are no charges unless it requires us to release a large volume of records. In such cases, copying charges may apply.

For non-personal requests, there are fees charged for the time spent in search and retrieval of records and retrieval fee.

Type of ChargeCost
Search and retrieval of records€20 per hour
Photocopying/scanning/printing4 cent per sheet
CD-ROM containing copy of documents€10
Radiograph (X-ray) containing copy documents€6

The search and retrieval fee is based on an estimate of the time the CRU will spend locating and gathering the records for decision making. It includes:

  • determining if we hold the records.
  • locating the records which are within the scope of the request.
  • retrieving such records.
  • extracting the information and/or records from the files, document, electronic or other information source containing both it and other material not relevant to the request.
  • preparing a Schedule of Records specifying the records for possible release.

Limits to fees and charges

There are upper and lower limits in terms of the charges an FOI request is subject to.

  • If fees and charges do not exceed €101 no charge is imposed.
  • If they exceed €101 and are below €500, they are payable and the CRU may request a deposit, which is usually 20% of the total estimate. The deposit must be paid before the CRU begins the search and retrieval process. The full cost must be paid before the records are released.
  • If the estimated search and retrieval costs exceed €700, the CRU will notify the requester and invite the requester to narrow the scope of the request. If the requester is unwilling to refine the request, the CRU may decline to process the request in line with Section 15 of the Act, or the CRU may decide to process the request and the requester must incur the full cost of the search and retrieval.

Deposit and payment

Once a deposit has been received by the CRU the processing of the FOI request will begin. Records will not be made available to the requester until full payment has been received by the CRU.

Reduced fees and waivers

Section 27(6) of the Act states where the information sought is of particular assistance to the understanding of an issue of national importance, costs may be waived.

Internal Review process fees

If you want to appeal an FOI decision a fee of €30 applies. A reduced fee of €10 applies for medical card holders.

There is no fee for Internal Review applications concerning only personal information relating to oneself or in relation to a decision to impose a fee or deposit.

Appeal to Information Commissioner

Following completion of internal review, an applicant may seek an independent review of the decision from the Information Commissioner. Also, if you have not received a reply to your application for internal review within three weeks, this is deemed to be a refusal and an applicant may appeal the matter to the Commissioner.

Appeals in writing may be made to the Information Commissioner at the following address:

Officer of the Information Commissioner
18 Lower Leeson Street
Dublin 2
Phone: (353) 1 639 5689

His or her findings will be binding, subject to appeal to the High Court on a point of law.

  • A standard fee of €50 must accompany applications to the Information Commissioner for review of decisions made by public bodies under section 22.
  • A reduced fee of €15 applies if
  1. the person bringing the application is a medical card holder or a dependant of a medical card holder or
  2. the person is specified in section 38(2) i.e. a third party with the right to apply directly to the Information Commissioner where a public body decides to release their information on public interest grounds.