New Zealand Law Society - Earthquake could slow OIA process, Ombudsman says

Earthquake could slow OIA process, Ombudsman says

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The Office of the Ombudsman says the recent earthquakes have had an impact on a number of central government agencies in Wellington, and this will have an impact on their ability to meet Official Information Act response deadlines.

The Office says it will take these extenuating circumstances into account in relevant cases, when deciding how to deal with complaints that are received about delays or extensions of the timeframes for responding to OIA requests.

"The same will apply to local government agencies that have been directly affected by the earthquakes, and their ability to meet response deadlines under the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act," it says.

"Where possible, agencies should try and keep requesters informed with what is happening on their requests, and when an unavoidable delay has arisen as a result of the earthquakes."