Making a Request
Right of access
Anyone, of any age, from anywhere in the world, can apply for access to any information. The Information Manager will be required to assist the applicant, including considering the needs of persons with disabilities. If you have a general enquiry about Freedom of Information contact the FOI Office.
How do I make a request?
Freedom of Information requests must be made to a public authority under the Cayman Islands Government, in writing (letter, email, fax, prescribed form) and include a name, contact details and any preference for how to receive the information (e.g. inspection, photocopies). You don't have to give a reason why you want the information or explicitly state that it is a Freedom of Information request. However, your request should be as specific as possible in describing the information you need. Remember that a public authority may not be able to respond to a vague request or a voluminous request if it may unreasonably divert the available resources of the public authority. Specific requests will help you get what you want, so try to provide as much information as possible: what kind of document is it, what format is the information in, what date or year was it produced.
What can I ask for?
You can ask for any information held by public authorities. This includes computerised records, emails, maps, audio-visual recordings, etc. You may also ask to have copies of documents or to view or listen to the record. The public authority, however, does not have to provide information that is already in the public domain (e.g. that has been published in the Government's Annual Report or is available online or at the library). Also, it should be noted that a public authority does not have to create a document that does not already exist to fulfill your request, but it may be required to compile information in its possession. Your right to information will be subject to exemptions detailed in the Law, which are explained under Exemptions.
Can anybody use the FOI Law to get information?
Yes, everyone has the right to information and anyone can use the Law, even if you are not a resident or citizen of Cayman. The Law applies to all persons.
What must an authority do when it gets my request?
- Tell you within ten calendar days that it has received the request (acknowledge the request).
- Deal with it as soon as possible.
- Talk to you about any difficulties in dealing with it.
- As soon as possible, give you an estimate of the fees if any are applicable
- Within thirty calendar days, tell you the decision on giving you access.
- Where an agency has to consult a third party, it may extend the time in which it is required to tell you its decision. Consultation is usually necessary where the document contains information about the third party.