Re-use of public sector information

The Re-Use of Public Sector Information Regulations 2005 came into force on 1 July 2005. These Regulations are intended to encourage the re-use of information produced by public organisations. This page explains how to make requests for information should you wish to re-use it.

What does "Re-Use" mean?

Information can already be requested under other access to information legislation, such the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002, but any information disclosed in this way may be protected by copyright. This means you may not have the automatic right to re-use it for purposes other than those for which it was originally intended. If you are seeking information held by the Fife Council with a view to re-using it in some way you must first apply to the Council for permission to do so. In addition a licence fee may apply should permission be granted.

Summary of the Regulations

  • We must deal with requests within 20 working days (from the day after the request is received). The time period may be extended if the request is particularly complex.
  • A license can be issued imposing conditions on the re-use of information.
  • There may be a license fee.
  • A licence cannot restrict competition.
  • Exclusive licensing arrangements are not generally allow.
  • Conditions for re-use and any standard use are available to the public.
  • We must not discriminate between applicants making requests for similar purposes.

How can I apply to Re-Use Information?

  • You can apply using the E-service linked to this page.
  • If you plan to re-use the information for a non profit making purpose.
  • If you are applying or other purposes, a charge may apply.

What happens when I apply?

We will respond to your request within 20 working days.

When we receive your application, we will acknowledge your request and allocate a reference number. You will then be informed whether the material requested will be available for re-use. If re-use is granted, you also will be informed of the conditions under which the information can be re-used and the reference number will become your licence number. If the request is refused you will be informed of the reason for the refusal and you will be informed that you have the right to appeal the decision. Details of how to appeal will also be provided.

Are there any exemptions?

You will not be permitted to re-use information when any of the following conditions apply:

  • Copyright does not belong to the Fife Council as it belongs to a third party; or information is subject to an enforceable exemption under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002, or any other relevant Enactment; or
  • the activity of producing the information is not within the scope of our public tasks.
Are there any fees or charges?
Fife Council is entitled to charge for collection, production, reproduction and dissemination of the information. The Regulations also make provision for a reasonable return on investment. If there is a charge you will be informed at the time of approval of any application.

Right of Appeal

If you are not satisfied with any aspect of the handling of your application you have a right to complain. Please write to the:
Chief Legal Officer,
Fife House,
North Road,
If you are still dissatisfied you have a right of appeal to the Office of Public Sector Information (OPSI) for a final decision. Please note that all complaints must be registered with OPSI within 28 days of the result of your complaint to the Council. You can write to the Office of Public Sector Information, Admiralty Arch, North Side, The Mall, London SW1A 2WH. Their website is (takes you to an external site).

Other Information / Related Links
The Office of the Scottish Information Commissioner also has a range of information and advice on all aspects of access to information legislation. 

Fiona Stuart, Solicitor 
Tel: 03451 55 55 55 + Ext 44 23 87 Fax: 01592 583155 Contact Fiona Stuart online
By Post: Fife House North Street Glenrothes Fife KY7 5LT

Information Requests
Tel: 01592 583530 Contact Information Requests online

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