Federal Court

Privacy Legislation

Preparation fees respecting electronic records were authorized

Canadian citizen made request for three sets of records. Records existed in electronic form and did not have to be created from other records by computer. Human Resources and Skills Development Canada provided first set, but calculated fees of $4,180 for other two and required prepayment. Requestor complained to Officer of Information Commissioner. Parties brought reference. Current information officer asserted that fees to search for and prepare disclosure information found in governmental electronic records could be levied only with respect to electronic records that could be created with aid of computers. Attorney General asserted that fee could be levied irrespective of whether or not record currently existed. Electronic records were not non-computerized records for purpose of search and preparation fees authorized by s. 11(2) of Access to Information Act (Can.) and Access to Information Regulations (Can.). Regulations were amended in past and there was nothing to prevent further amendment now.

Canada (Information Commissioner) v. Canada (Attorney General) (Mar. 31, 2015, F.C., Sean Harrington J., File No. T-367-13) 252 A.C.W.S. (3d) 598.

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