Housing

Ways to access FACS Housing information

1. Website information:

On the FACS Housing website you will find large volumes of information. FACS Housing will manage its release of information in accordance with the GIPA Act. This information will be available through our website at www.housing.nsw.gov.au and other appropriate ways and, free of charge.

Certain information is required by law to be available free of charge under the GIPA Act from our website called “Open Access Information”. This includes the following with links for you to search for the information you are seeking:

In addition, “Open Access Information” also requires FACS Housing by law to proactively release other information unless there is an overriding public interest against disclosure. If you are unable to find the information on our website you may contact us. There may be occasions where a fee will be required, on these occasions we will let you know.

2. Informal request:

A person has the right to make an informal request for information if the information you are seeking has not been published. FACS Housing will try and release as much information as possible unless to do so would not be in the public interest. If you are seeking information that is not already on our website and you would like to make an informal request, please contact us.

If you are a client or a tenant of FACS Housing and would like certain information from your file such as a copy of your Residential Tenancy Agreement or correspondence you sent to FACS Housing etc, then you may request for this information as an “Informal Request for Information”. Conditions do apply and further information may be obtained from our policy and Informal Request for Information form.

In accordance with GIPA Act, FACS Housing is not required to release information informally. FACS Housing reserves the right to ask for a formal access application if the work involved is excessive, if there are public interest factors to consider and, deciding if the information can be released.

3. Formal Access Application:

In the event that the information you are seeking is not available on our website and cannot be provided to you as an informal request for information, then you may wish to consider applying for access to the information by lodging a formal access application.

FACS Housing will only accept access applications that contain the following information:

  1. Must be in writing and sent to the address stated below
  2. Clearly state the information you are seeking under the GIPA Act
  3. Application fee of $30.00 in the form of a money order or cheque made payable to FACS Housing
  4. Must have a return postal address within Australia
  5. A valid copy of your Health Care Card or Pension Card, if this is applicable to you. Please see below processing fees - and;
  6. Must include as much specific information to assist us to identify the information you are requesting.

If your application does not include the above mentioned FACS Housing has the right to consider your access application invalid in accordance with Section 41 of the GIPA Act, in the first instance. FACS Housing will advise you and assist you where possible to validate your application.

If your application is considered a valid application FACS Housing will acknowledge receipt of your application within 5 working days. The GIPA Act allows FACS Housing 20 working days to decide your access application unless it is subject to an extension.

Application fees

An access application is subject to a $30.00 application fee.

Processing fees

FACS Housing may impose processing charges at an hourly rate of $30.00 and may require an advance deposit to proceed with your application. If this is applicable to your access application FACS Housing will advise you in writing. However, you may be entitled to a 50% reduction of the processing charges if you:

  • Hold a valid Pensioner Concession Card or Health Care Card
  • Are a full-time student
  • Are a non-profit organisation (including a person applying for or on behalf of a non-profit organisation)
  • Are suffering financial hardship, or
  • Are applying for information that is of special benefit to the public

For your convenience you may download an Formal Access Application form, you may visit your local Client Service Office, or contact the Right to Information Unit on telephone (02) 9716 2662 to obtain a form. If you do not wish to use the access application form you may simply write to us ensuring you have satisfied all of the 6 requirements mentioned above.

Access applications should be sent to:

Manager
Right to Information Unit
 
Department of Family and Community Services
Locked Bag 4028
ASHFIELD NSW 2131

www.facs.nsw.gov.au