ICO policy documents: Line to Take/February 2011

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Main article: ICO Lines to Take

February 2011 release

  • An updated list was requested via FOI and is available on WhatDoTheyKnow [1].
  • The ICO released the information from their Intranet in a non-machine readable way - rather than saving the information from their intranet in HTML format, they printed out the relevant pages, scanned them as images to 4 PDF files of 3-4MB in size, and no OCR information was available in the PDFs.
  • A significant amount of work was therefore required to update the LTTs on this wiki.
  • The original 4 files were split as follows:

Notes on the release

New LTTs

  • 16 new LTTs were provided. They are listed below, and most cover the internal handling of cases by ICO staff dealing with FOI or EIR complaints on procedural breaches.


Updated LTTs

  • The following 16 LTTs were updated: either following a change in direction to ICO case workers due to an Information Tribunal or higher court ruling, or to provide further case precedence to help continue to justify the ICO's position.
  • NB: The previous version of the LTTs can be viewed by clicking the page's "history" tab, then choosing the "baselined xx/xx/xxxx version" page revision.


LTT Ref Title Description of change
LTT5 renamed to "Legal professional privilege under EIR" (was "Similarity of s42 and regulation 12(5)(b)"). LTT added references to two recent Tribunal decisions which gave further support that regulation 12(5)(b) is the appropriate EIR exception for LPP.
LTT21 Exemptions and exceptions not claimed by a public authority. IT case confirms that ICO has discretion to consider further exemptions. LTT amended to include requirement for ICO to consider for Human Rights Act 1998 & data protection issues when doing so.
LTT29 Finding in breach of sections 1, 10 or 17. Updated approach on procedural breaches of FOIA.
LTT47 Working days and variations to time for compliance. Minor update to include Academies, and new definition for "Date of Receipt".
LTT55 Evidence from third parties. LTT added reference to recent Tribunal decision which further supported the ICO's line.
LTT80 Defining environmental information. Minor wording changes, no affect on overall line.
LTT82 "Any information on". LTT added reference to recent Tribunal decision which further supported the ICO's line.
LTT90 “Duty” to read a request objectively. No change to text - possibly incorrectly flagged as an updated LTT.
LTT92 Timing at which exemptions and public interest test are to be applied. Move of procedural approach detail to new LTT183.
LTT110 Drafts of documents where final versions are complete. Tribunal case results in change in position to require a public interest test to be carried out on draft documents.
LTT121 Information held (on balance of probabilities) test. Tribunal case gives further guidance. No change in line position.
LTT123 Vexatious requests. Guidance on interaction with Subject Access Requests provided. More info on test for "serious purpose". EIR guidance moved to separate LTT182.
LTT143 Reasonably accessible information. Only minor changes to qualify some of the text
LTT144 Personal data - anonymised statistics. Further clarification to take into account a pending High Court appeal in the DoH Abortion statistics case
LTT152 Naming Officials representing Lobbyists and Public Authorities. Switch from using the Bavarian Lager Court of First Instance decision to Creekside v ICO & DCMS as basis of policy, which effectively remains unchanged.
LTT158 Functions exercised for specified purposes under section 31. This LTT has been almost completely re-written to use a different definition of "function" and make the LTT clearer to implement.