In the event of a request asking for information relating to a third party, the Right to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (RTIPPA) provides for a Third Party Intervention process in order to ensure that a third party’s information is protected if necessary. Please see sections 34-36 for more details.
Receiving a Notice from a Public Body
If the head of a public body is considering giving access to information that might result in an unreasonable invasion of the third party’s privacy (section 21) and/or affect their business and/or financial interests (section 22), the head is required to notify the third party in writing.
This notice will explain that a request for records containing third party information has been made, and that the head is considering granting access to some or all of the third party information. The notice will include a copy of the information under consideration, and will state that the third party has 21 days after the notice is given to make representations regarding the disclosure.
As a third party, you must reply to the notice by making a written representation (unless the head gives you permission to make it orally) to the head of the public body as to whether or not you agree with the disclosure. The head, however, will make his/her decision within 30 days after the notice is given (whether or not you reply), and notify both you and the applicant.
Filing a complaint or Referring the Matter
If the head’s decision is to give access to the information, you, as a third party, may file a complaint with the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Commissioner or refer the matter to a judge of the Court of Queen’s Bench within 21 days of the date of the notice of the decision, after which time (if no complaint has been filed) the information will be given to the applicant.
If the head decides not to disclose the information, the applicant has 60 days from the date of the notice of the head’s decision to file a complaint to the Commissioner, or 30 days to refer the matter to a judge of the Court of Queen’s Bench.
For more information, please see Review Process