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Decision Summary

  • Case Ref: FS50142320
  • Date: 29 January 2009
  • Public Authority: Cabinet Office
  • Summary: The complainant made a freedom of information request to the Cabinet Office for information relating to communications with Diana, Princess of Wales and/or her representatives. In response to the request the Cabinet Office disclosed a quantity of information but withheld further information under the exemptions in section 37(1)(a) (communication with Her Majesty, with other members of the Royal Family or with the Royal Household), section 40(2) (Personal information) and section 41(1) (Information provided in confidence). Having investigated the complaint, and having inspected the withheld information, the Commissioner is satisfied that the section 37(1)(a) and section 40(2) exemptions were correctly applied. Therefore the Commissioner has not undertaken an assessment of section 41(1). The Commissioner also found that the Cabinet Office breached section 17(1) of the Act by failing to issue a refusal notice within 20 working days and by failing to cite exemptions on which it later sought to rely. It also breached section 17(1)(b) by failing to specify why section 40(2) applied and breached section 17(3) by failing to communicate its public interest determination to the complainant within a reasonable timescale.
  • View PDF of Decision Notice: [1]