Ms. X and Office of the Revenue Commissioners

CourtInformation Commission
JudgeSenior Investigator
Judgment Date01 Sep 2021
Case OutcomeThe Senior Investigator affirmed Revenue’s decision.
RespondentOffice of the Revenue Commissioners
Record NumberOIC-108607-R7N7Y3
Whether Revenue was justified in refusing to grant access, under section 15(1)(a) of the Act, to records containing further information regarding a note to block payment for annual leave that was attached to the applicant’s file on the ground that no relevant records exist or could be found

OIC-108607-R7N7Y3

Background

The applicant in this case is a former Revenue employee who was pursuing a payment in lieu of untaken annual leave following the termination of her contract. The payment was subsequently made. In June 2020, she obtained a copy of a note that had been attached to her file to indicate that there should be no payment for annual leave.

In a request dated 12 March 2021, she sought access to further information regarding the note to block payment. On 8 April 2021, Revenue refused the request under section 15(1)(a) on the ground that no records containing any such further information sought exist or could be found.

The applicant sought an internal review of that decision on 16 April 2021, in which she again referenced the note on her file. On 11 May 2021, Revenue affirmed its original decision. It stated that the note the applicant referred to in her correspondence had already been released to her on foot of a previous request and refused access to same under section 15(1)(i), which allows for the refusal of a request where the records sought have previously been released.

On 8 June 2021, the applicant sought a review by this Office of Revenue’s decision to refuse access to records containing further information regarding the note. She noted that the record released indicates that an instruction was issued that there should be no pay, and essentially argued that a record should exist that would indicate who issued the instruction.

I have now completed my review in accordance with section 22(2) of the FOI Act. In carrying out my review, I have had regard to the communications between Revenue and the applicant referred to above and to communications between this Office and both parties on the matter. I have decided to conclude this review by way of a formal, binding decision.

Scope of the Review

This review is concerned solely with whether Revenue was justified in refusing to grant access, under section 15(1)(a) of the Act, to records containing further information regarding a note to block payment for annual leave that was attached to the applicant’s file on the ground that no relevant records exist or can be found, having taken...

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