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FOI Request Statement

Freedom of Information (FOI) Requests

Under BC’s Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, you have the right to request any record in our control or custody.  This includes personal records about yourself or someone you are responsible for, or general records that are not personal, but that could be released to anyone, in part or in whole.

There is a formal process that you need to follow to make a Freedom of Information (FOI) request for information that is not routinely made available to the public.


Before you make a formal request

The information you are looking for may already routinely be made available to the public, in which case a formal request isn’t required. You may be able to find it yourself online, or with the help of a LVDPL staff member.

Find documents and information online – to find available documents and information, you can check our website.

Get documents and information from staff – you may also be able to get information that is routinely made available by contacting staff. They can provide such information as answers to questions related to Library operations. Staff can also confirm whether you need to submit a formal request for the information you are seeking.


Making a formal request

If you can’t find the information yourself, or if staff tell you that the information isn’t routinely made available, you will need to submit a formal request.

These are the steps:

  1. You submit your formal FOI request – Complete the request form and either email/mail the completed form to us, or drop it off at our main branch (1277 Lynn Valley Road), or simply send an email outlining what you are looking for to To reduce processing time and potential fees, keep your request clear, concise, and focused, and include appropriate date ranges.

  2. We review and acknowledge your request – We will determine if the information you’re looking for is routinely made available, or if we need to search for, compile, and review it. We will contact you within five business days to confirm your request, provide you with a file number, and to advise if we expect any delays.

  3. We gather the information – We will contact the appropriate department/staff member to retrieve the information you are looking for, and let you know if there is a large amount of records, or if there is likely to be a fee for your request. We will keep your identity confidential throughout.

  4. We review the information – We will review the information to make sure it’s complete, and confirms to privacy regulations. If there’s information that we can’t provide, we will redact (black-out) that information from the document and mark it with the relevant section(s) of the Act to explain why it has been withheld.

  5. We release the information – We will prepare your information release and send it to you by email/mail, or advise you that it is ready to be picked up.


Important to know

How long it takes to respond to your request

The Act allows a maximum of 30 business days for us to respond to your request; we’ll respond sooner if possible. In certain cases, the Act allows for the 30-day time period to be extended.  We’ll notify you as soon as possible if we need to extend the time limit for responding to your request.

Fees associated with your request

Section 75 of the Act allows us to charge an additional fee for locating, retrieving, producing, and preparing the records for disclosure. Depending on the nature of your request, there may be additional fees. We’ll provide you with an estimate if your request may result in fees.

There’s no fee for the first three hours spent locating and retrieving a records, or time spent removing sensitive personal information from a records, unless you are seeking the information for commercial purposes.

What to do if you aren’t satisfied with the response

If you’re not satisfied with the response to your request, contact us to address your concerns. You can submit your complaint in writing to Provide as much detail as you can to help us understand the nature of your complaint. It may take at least five business days to respond.

Sometimes a request for information is subject to exceptions under the Act. If you’re not satisfied with our application of exceptions, you may contact the Office of the Information & Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia (make the name into a link to the OIPC website). The Commissioner is an independent Officer of the Legislature of British Columbia who monitors how public bodies respond to requests for access to information and how they protect the privacy of your personal information.

The Commissioner ensures that your rights under the Act are protected and that disputes are resolved in a fair and unbiased manner.

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