Official Information Act requests

The Official Information Act 1982 (OIA) is designed to make government activities more open and transparent to the public.

What is it for?

It has two very important roles:

  • to make official information more freely available to the public; and
  • it protects official information to the extent consistent with the public interest.

Information will be made available unless there is a good reason to withhold it. The OIA sets out a number of reasons for which information may be withheld. These reasons include preservation of personal privacy and protection of information which has been received in confidence. However, even where there is good reason for withholding it, information will still be released if there are overriding considerations which mean it is in the public interest to release it.

More information about how the OIA operates can be found on the Office of the Ombudsman website.

Sources of information

Before requesting official information from the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA), we encourage you to check out the sources of information available on our website.

To find NZQA's published information and OIA releases please click here.

How to make a request

Requests should include:

  • your name
  • preferred email address
  • contact phone number
  • your postal address, and
  • specific details of the information you want.

There are two ways you can make your request:

How long will it take?

NZQA will acknowledge your request upon receipt and respond no later than 20 working days after we receive it. In the case of large requests or those requiring consultation, the Act allows for a time limit extension. If this applies, we will let you know and give you an extended due date. NZQA may ask for clarification on any OIA request if this is required.

Do you have to pay?

Not usually but there is provision for a charge to be made. This is decided on a case by case basis. You will be told of the charge, or given on estimate, before the information is provided.

OIA Charging Guidelines  (DOCX, 13KB)

Withholding information

We may withhold information for specific reasons. If this occurs, we will explain the reasons why. You can refer to sections 6, 9 and 18 of the Official Information Act for more guidance on this.

What if I am not satisfied?

You may wish to contact us in the first instance to see if we can resolve the issue.

You can make a complaint to the Office of the Ombudsman if you have concerns regarding the way we treated or processed an OIA request. Those concerns can relate to the refusal to provide information, the breach of a statutory time frame, the decision to extend a time frame or impose a charge, or the imposition of conditions on the release of information.

The Ombudsman’s role is to investigate and review our decision. The Ombudsman does not release the withheld information itself but may issue a recommendation to us to release the information if the Ombudsman considers release appropriate.

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