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April 21 2015

What Will Be The Impact Of The New EU Data Protection Regulation On The UK 's Freedom Of Information Act?

Undoubtedly one of the more mind-bending exemptions to apply under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA) is the exemption for personal information (s.40). This is partly due to s. 40 's close link with the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA). The final text of the EU Data Protection Regulation is not yet agreed and discussions are on-going within the EU. However, the new EU Data Protection regulatory framework will be presented as a Regulation and not a Directive. A Regulation has direct applicability in UK law which will almost certainly lead to the repeal of the DPA. It is likely that the FOIA will need to be amended to reflect the repeal of the DPA and refer to the new law. Additionally, it seems certain that the new Regulation will be more prescriptive than the DPA and there will be reduced scope for national particularisation.