The State Insurance Regulatory Authority, as a NSW Government agency, and under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 is required to make much of its information available. on its website, free of charge.
How can I access information held by SIRA?
1. Search on this website
Under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009, certain information is required by law to be available on our website, free of charge. This is called "open access information" and includes our:
We have a large number of corporate policies under which we operate. Our policies relate to internal and external operational procedures and protocols. These can be found throughout our website.
Some relate directly with the practices that affect members of the public. To access a copy of any of these documents or if you require a copy of a document that is not found on our website, please contact us on 13 10 50 or email the Right to Information Unit directly firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our disclosure log records details of government information released in response to formal and non-personal right to information requests under the GIPA Act.
Unless the applicant objects, we disclose information we consider may be of interest to other members of the public. This includes a description of the information released and, where possible, a link to the relevant documents.
To date, we have not considered any access applications to be of interest to other members of the public, other than the applicant. Our disclosure log will be updated on a regular basis.
You should check the open access information on SIRA’s website to see if the information you are looking for is already available. In addition to the “open access information” which SIRA is required by law to make available, SIRA also proactively releases a large volume of other information.
If you cannot find the information you are looking for on this website, you can ask us whether the information has already been released by SIRA proactively in some other form (eg. in printed form).
You can contact the GIPA team on email@example.com to ask if the information you are after has been released by SIRA either on this website or in another form. Some publications may only be available on the payment of a fee, but we will let you know if that is the case.
2. Make an informal request
If the information you are after has not already been published by SIRA, but is information which raises no particular concerns in terms of possible public interest reasons why it should not be released, then SIRA may be able to release it to you on request without the formalities of having to make a formal application.
If you think this applies to the information you are after you can contact us firstname.lastname@example.org to make an informal request.
Generally, we try to release information we hold without the need for you to make a formal access application, unless there are good reasons to require one.
Under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009, however, government agencies are not required to release information without an access application. SIRA reserves the right to require you to lodge an access application, particularly if there may be significant public interest considerations that need to be taken into account in deciding whether the information can be released or if you request a large volume of information or if it would otherwise take SIRA a significant amount of time to consider and respond to your request.
3. Make a formal access application
If the information you are seeking is not available on this website and is not otherwise routinely provided by SIRA on request, then you have a right to formally apply for access to specific information. You can make a formal application by downloading and completing this online form. Applications are accepted by the GIPA team:
State Insurance Regulatory Authority
Right to Information Unit
Locked Bag 2906,
Lisarow NSW 2252
Phone: 13 10 50
The Act says that we are only able to accept access applications that:
- Are in writing and sent to us or emailed at the address above;
- Clearly state you are requesting information under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (NSW);
- Enclose the $30 application fee;
- Have a return postal address as the address for correspondence; and
- Include as much specific information as necessary to enable us to identify the information you are asking for. If your application does not include these five things, it will be invalid and will not be processed. If that happens, however, we will let you know and we will help you, if possible, by explaining how you can make a valid application.
Otherwise we will write to acknowledge receipt of a valid access application within 5 working days, and will deal with your application within 20 working days (subject to any extension allowed for under the Act). If any extension of time is required to deal with your application, we will let you know in writing.
Application fees and processing charges
Unless waived or reduced, the application fee for making an access application is $30. Processing charges can also be imposed at the rate of $30 per hour. In some circumstances an advance deposit can be required. We will let you know in writing if that applies to your application. Certain discounts may apply, including on financial hardship and public interest grounds – for more details see the NSW Information and Privacy Commission website.
A $15 concession applies for processing charges where an applicant can certify they:
- hold a Pensioner Concession Card
- are a full time student
- represent a not for profit organisation
- can demonstrate financial hardship
- that the information they seek is in the public interest. The guidelines published by the Office of the Information Commissioner will be applied in determining if the information is of special benefit to the public generally.
We have discretion under Section 127 of the GIPA Act to waive, reduce or refund fees in specific cases.
- where there has been a significant delay in dealing with an application
- where the agency decides to publicly release the information requested by the applicant
- where the agency is satisfied that release of the information supports the aims and objectives of the legislation administered by the agency
- where the applicant is a participant in the Lifetime Care and Support scheme.
If an access application is not decided in time, any application fee is to be refunded and no processing charge will be imposed.
There are specific public interest considerations against disclosure that an agency can take into account. These are:
- law enforcement and security
- individual rights, judicial processes and natural justice
- responsible and effective government
- business interests
- environment, culture, economy and other matters
- secrecy and exemption provisions in other laws.
Access application form
Although there is no legal requirement for you to use any particular form to make an access application (beyond satisfying the five requirements set out above), we have created an online form and that you may wish to use for convenience.
Note: We can refuse a request for information if there is an overriding public interest against disclosure or if searching for the requested information would require unreasonable and substantial diversion of its resources. Any decision to withhold or release the documents is appealable by either the applicant or third parties (i.e. other parties involved in the documents).
If you disagree with our decision in relation to an access application, you have the right to request a review.
Further information on right of review is available at www.ipc.nsw.gov.au.