Country

Netherlands

Netherlands

Name of law : Law on the Openness of Administration (WOB)
First adopted : 1978
Last modified : 07 June 2016
RTI Rating last updated : 18 November 2016

Section Max ScoreScore
Right of Access 6 4
Scope 30 21
Requesting procedures 30 22
Exceptions 30 15
Appeals 30 14
Sanctions 8 4
Promotional measures 16 2
TOTAL 150 82

Right of Access

Indicator

Description

Scoring instructions
MAX score
Findings

Points

Article

Comments
1 The legal framework (including jurisprudence) recognises a fundamental right of access to information.Score 0 for no constitutional right to information, 1 point for a limited constitutional right, 2 points for full constitutional recognition of a public right of access to information.2 Partially Article 110 of the Netherlands Constitution: \"In the exercise of their duties government bodies shall observe the right of public access to information in accordance with rules to be prescribed by Act of Parliament.\" There are two views as to whether this provision guarantees a right to public information or only imposes a duty on public bodies to make information available consistent with statutes. The prevailing view within the Netherlands is that the Constitution does not guarantee a right to information, based in part on the fact that Article 110 is not included in the Bill of Rights but rather in that part of the Constitution titled “Legislation and Administration.” A minority contend that the right is of constitutional stature. The courts have not expressed an opinion on the matter and are unlikely to do so, given that the courts may not set aside a law, or declare an action of an administrative body illegal, on the ground that it contradicts the Constitution. In any event, the issue is not significant given that the FOI law provides a relatively strong statutory protection of the right Link to the Constitution of the Netherlands (English version): http://www.government.nl/documents-and-publications/regulations/2012/10/18/the-constitution-of-the-kingdom-of-the-netherlands-2008.html
2 The legal framework creates a specific presumption in favour of access to all information held by public authorities, subject only to limited exceptions.No=0, Partially=1, Yes=22 YES Section 2. Paragraph 1: \"An administrative authority shall, in the exercise of its functions, disclose information in accordance with the present Act, without prejudice to provisions laid down in other statutes.\" This is only partial presumption of openness because other laws can override it.
3 3.1 The legal framework contains a specific statement of principles calling for a broad interpretation of the RTI law
3.2 The legal framework emphasises the benefits of the right to information?
3.1(Y/N - max 1 point)
3.2 (Y/N - max 1 point)
2 Partially Preamble of the Act: \"Whereas We have considered that, in view of Article 110 of the Constitution, it has proved desirable, in the interests of effective, democratic governance, to amend the rules concerning openness and public access to government information and to incorporate these rules in statute law wherever possible;\"




Scope

Indicator

Description

Scoring instructions
MAX score
Findings

Points

Article

Comments
4 Everyone (including non-citizens and legal entities) has the right to file requests for information.Score 0 point if only residents/citizens; 1 point for all natural persons; 1 point for legal persons. 2 YES Section 3. Paragraph 1.a: \"Anyone may apply to an administrative authority or to an agency, service or company carrying out work for which it is accountable to an administrative authority for information contained in documents concerning an administrative matter.\" \"Anyone\" may apply for information.
5 The right of access applies to all material held by or on behalf of public authorities which is recorded in any format, regardless of who produced it.Score 1-3 points if limited definition of information information such as not "internal documents" or databases excluded, 4 points for all information with no exceptions.4 YES Section 3. Paragraph 1.a: \"Anyone may apply to an administrative authority or to an agency, service or company carrying out work for which it is accountable to an administrative authority for information contained in documents concerning an administrative matter.\" Have to be in considetation the definition employed in this law in section 1 therefore, a document is a written document or other material containing data which is deposited with an administrative authority;
6 Requesters have a right to access both information and records/documents (i.e. a right both to ask for information and to apply for specific documents).Score 1 point for only documents, 1 point for information2 YES Section 3. Paragraph 1: “Anyone may apply to an administrative authority or to an agency, service or company carrying out work for which it is accountable to an administrative authority for information contained in documents concerning an administrative matter”.
7 The right of access applies to the executive branch with no bodies or classes of information excluded.This includes executive (cabinet) and adminsitration including all ministries, departments, local government, public schools, public health care bodies, the police, the armed forces, security services, and bodies owned or controlled by the above.Score 4 points for central government agencies covered: 1 for the head of state, 1 for ministries, 1 for other non-statutory agencies created by the ministries, 1 for state and local government if the government is unitary. If it´s a federalist system, 2 points for the non-statutory agencies. This can be determined by examining the length and thoroughness of the list, if such a schedule exists. Score 1 point for the archives. Add three points and deduct 1 for each exempted central agency (such as the armed forces, police, etc).8 YES Section 1.a: \"1. This Act applies to the following administrative authorities: a. Our Ministers; b. the administrative authorities of provinces, municipalities, water boards and regulatory industrial organisations; c. administrative authorities whose activities are subject to the responsibility of the authorities referred to in subsection 1 (a and b); d. such other administrative authorities as are not excluded by order in council.\" Expert says: Yes, even the bodies which have a lex specialis [like intelligence services or the tax office] are under the scope of the Wob because the scope of there lex specialis is limited to a defined and very limited set of docs [like the taxpayers docs of individuals] All of the intelligence, security, military, cabinet, etc etc are under the scope of the Wob. There is not one exception
8 The right of access applies to the legislature, including both administrative and other information, with no bodies excluded. Score 1 point if the law only applies to administrative documents, 2-3 points if some bodies excluded, 4 points if all legislative branch at all levels of government4 NO Section 1.a: \"1. This Act applies to the following administrative authorities: a. Our Ministers; b. the administrative authorities of provinces, municipalities, water boards and regulatory industrial organisations; c. administrative authorities whose activities are subject to the responsibility of the authorities referred to in subsection 1 (a and b); d. such other administrative authorities as are not excluded by order in council.\" Legislative bodies are not included under the scope.
9 The right of access applies to the judicial branch, including both administrative and other information, with no bodies excluded. Score 1 point if the law only applies to administrative documents, 2-3 points if some bodies excluded, 4 points if all judicial branch at all levels of government4 NO Section 1.a: \"1. This Act applies to the following administrative authorities: a. Our Ministers; b. the administrative authorities of provinces, mun icipalities, water boards and regulatory industrial organisations; c. administrative authorities whose activities are subject to the responsibility of the authorities referred to in subsection 1 (a and b); d. such other administrative authorities as are not excluded by order in council.\" Judicial bodies are not included under the scope.
10 The right of access applies to State-owned enterprises (commercial entities that are owned or controlled by the State). Score 1 point if some, 2 points if all2 YES Section 3. Paragraph 1: “Anyone may apply to an administrative authority or to an agency, service or company carrying out work for which it is accountable to an administrative authority for information contained in documents concerning an administrative matter”. The article provides: \"Company carrying out work for which it is accountable to an administrative authority\"
11 The right of access applies to other public authorities, including constitutional, statutory and oversight bodies (such as an election commission or information commission/er). Score 1 point if some bodies, 2 points if all2 NO Section 1.a: \"This Act applies to the following administrative authorities: a. Our Ministers; b. the administrative authorities of provinces, municipalities, water boards and regulatory industrial organisations; c. administrative authorities whose activities are subject to the responsibility of the authorities referred to in subsection 1 (a and b); d. such other administrative authorities as are not excluded by order in council.\" Its are not included under the scope.
12 The right of access applies to a) private bodies that perform a public function and b) private bodies that receive significant public funding. 1 point for public functions, 1 point for public funding 2 Partially Section 3.1: “Anyone may apply to an administrative authority or to an agency, service or company carrying out work for which it is accountable to an administrative authority for information contained in documents concerning an administrative matter.” The article only mentions the enterprises which realize public functions.

Requesting Procedures

Indicator

Description

Scoring instructions
MAX score
Findings

Points

Article

Comments
13 Requesters are not required to provide reasons for their requests.Y/N answer 0 or 2 points2 YES Section 3.3 \"The applicant is not required to declare an interest in the application.\"
14 Requesters are only required to provide the details necessary for identifying and delivering the information (i.e. some form of address for delivery).Score Max 2 points and deduct if requesters are required to give any of the following: ID number, telephone number, residential address, etc.2 YES Section 3, Paragraph 2: \"The applicant shall specify the administrative matter or the document relevant to it about which he wishes information.\" No mention about other requirements in order to request for information.
15 There are clear and relatively simple procedures for making requests. Requests may be submitted by any means of communication, with no requirement to use official forms or to state that the information is being requested under the access to information law.Max 2 points. Considerations include that there is no requirement to state that the request is under the RTI law, nor to use an official form, nor to identify the document being sought. 2 YES Section 3, Paragraph 2: \"The applicant shall specify the administrative matter or the document relevant to it about which he wishes information.\" No requirements besides the identification of the pretended document.
16 Public officials are required provide assistance to help requesters formulate their requests, or to contact and assist requesters where requests that have been made are vague, unduly broad or otherwise need clarification. Score 1 point for help in formulation and 1 point for clarification procedures2 Partially Section 3, Paragraph 4: \"If the wording of an application is too general, the administrative authority shall as soon as possible ask the applicant to make his application more specific and shall help him do so.\"
17     Public officials are required to provide assistance to requesters who require it because of special needs, for example because they are illiterate or disabled.Score Yes=2 point, No=02 NO Not mentioned.
18 Requesters are provided with a receipt or acknowledgement upon lodging a request within a reasonable timeframe, which should not exceed 5 working daysScore 1 point for receipt, 1 point for max 5 working days2 NO Not mentioned.
19 Clear and appropriate procedures are in place for situations where the authority to which a request is directed does not have the requested information. This includes an obligation to inform the requester that the information is not held and to refer the requester to another institution or to transfer the request where the public authority knows where the information is held.Score: 1 point for information not held, 1 for referrals or 2 for transfers2 YES Section 4: \"If the application concerns documents held by an administrative authority other than that to which the application has been submitted, the applicant shall, if necessary, be referred to that authority. If the application was made in writing, it shall be forwarded and the applicant shall be notified accordingly.\"
20 Public authorities are required to comply with requesters’ preferences regarding how they access information, subject only to clear and limited overrides (e.g. to protect a record).Score: 2 points for Yes, only 1 point if some limitations2 Partially Section 7, Paragraph 1: “The administrative authority shall provide information concerning the documents which contain the information required by: a. issuing a copy of the documents or conveying the ir exact substance in some other form; b. permitting the applicant to take note of the contents of the documents; c. supplying an extract from the documents or a summary of their contents, or d. supplying information contained in the documents;”
21 Public authorities are required to respond to requests as soon as possible.Score: No=0, Yes=2 points 2 YES Section 6, Paragraph 1: \"The administrative authority shall decide on the application for information at the earliest possible opportunity, <...>.\"
22 There are clear and reasonable maximum timelines (20 working days or less) for responding to requests, regardless of the manner of satisfying the request (including through publication).Score: 1 point for timeframes of 20 working days (or 1 month, 30 days or 4 weeks). Score 2 points for 10 working days (or 15 days, or two weeks) or less.2 YES Section 6, Paragraph 1: \"The administrative authority shall decide on the application for information at the earliest possible opportunity, and in any event no more than two weeks after the date of receipt of the application. The administrative authority may defer the decision for no more than a further two weeks. The applicant shall be notified in writing, with reasons, of the deferment before the first two-week period has elapsed.\"
23 There are clear limits on timeline extensions (20 working days or less), including a requirement that requesters be notified and provided with the reasons for the extension.---2 YES Section 6, Paragraph 1: \"The administrative authority shall decide on the application for information at the earliest possible opportunity, and in any event no more than two weeks after the date of receipt of the application. The dministrative authority may defer the decision for no more than a further two weeks. The applicant shall be notified in writing, with reasons, of the deferment before the first two-week period has elapsed.\"
24 It is free to file requests.Score: No=0, Yes=2 points2 YES In general, it´s free to file requests.
25 There are clear rules relating to access fees, which are set centrally, rather than being determined by individual public authorities. These include a requirement that fees be limited to the cost of reproducing and sending the information (so that inspection of documents and electronic copies are free) and a certain initial number of pages (at least 20) are provided for free. Score 1 point for fees being limited to reproduction and delivery costs and set centrally, 1 point for at least 20 pages free of charge or for fees being optional2 YES Articles 2 and 3. (DECISION of 5 February 1993 on charges for the supply of copies, extracts and summaries on request under the Open Government Act) \"Article 2. Paragraph 1. “For the supply of copies of documents under Article 7, first paragraph, under a, of the Open Government Act A fee may be charged. 2. If a fee is charged for providing copies of written documents, is this: for less than 6 copies: free; for 6-13 copies: € 4.50; for 14 or more copies: € 0.35 per copy. 3. If a fee is charged for providing copies of other material that contains data, this amounts to no more than cost.\"
26   There are fee waivers for impecunious requesters ---2 YES Netherland Administrative Law Act and in enforceable regulations related with it.
27 There are no limitations on or charges for reuse of information received from public bodies, except where a third party (which is not a public authority) holds a legally-protected copyright over the information. Score: No=0, Yes=2 points2 NO Article 11h of the Government Information (Public Access) Act (WOB) says that \"the total income from supplying and allowing re-use should not exceed the cost of collection, production, reproduction and dissemination of information, together with a reasonable return on investment\".


Exceptions

Indicator

Description

Scoring instructions
MAX score
Findings

Points

Article

Comments
28 The standards in the RTI Law trump restrictions on information disclosure (secrecy provisions) in other legislation to the extent of any conflict.Score 4 points for a resounding "yes" and 1/2/3 points if only for some classes of information or for some exceptions. If the state secrets law is not trumped by the RTI law max score is 2 points. 4 YES Expert: says that Wob overrules regarding access all other laws, except for limited lex specialis situations.
29 The exceptions to the right of access are consistent with international standards. Permissible exceptions are: national security; international relations; public health and safety; the prevention, investigation and prosecution of legal wrongs; privacy; legitimate commercial and other economic interests; management of the economy; fair administration of justice and legal advice privilege; conservation of the environment; and legitimate policy making and other operations of public authorities. It is also permissible to refer requesters to information which is already publicly available, for example online or in published form.Score 10 points and then deduct 1 point for each exception which either (a) falls outside of this list and/or (b) is more broadly framed10 YES Section 10. Paragraph 1: \"Disclosure of information pursuant to this Act shall not take place insofar as: a. this might endanger the unity of the Crown; b. this might damage the security of the State; c. the data concerned relate to companies and manufacturing processes and were furnished to the government in confidence by natural or legal persons; d. it concerns personal data within the meaning of division 2 of chapter 2 of the Personal Data Protection Act, unless the disclosure manifestly does not constitute a breach of privacy. 2. Nor shall disclosure of information take place insofar as its importance does not outweigh one of the following: a. relations between the Netherlands and other states or international organisations; b. the economic and financial interests of the Stat e, other bodies constituted under public law or the administrative authorities referred to in section 1a, (c) and (d); c. the investigation of criminal offences and the prosecution of offenders; d. inspection, control and oversight by administrative authorities; e. respect for personal privacy; f. the importance to the addressee of being the first to note the information; g. the prevention of disproportionate advantage or disadvantage to the natural or legal persons concerned or to third parties. 3. Subsection 2, opening words and (e) does not apply in so far as the person involved has consented to the disclosure. 4. Subsection 1, opening words, (c) and (d), subsection 2, opening words and (e), and subsection 7, opening words and (a) do not apply in so far as the disclosure concerns environmental information related to environmental emissions. Notwithstanding subsection 1, opening words and (c) disclosure of environmental information shall not take place if the interests of disclosure do not outweigh the interests stated there. 5. Subsection 2, opening words and (b) applies to the disclosure of environmental information concerning confidential procedures 6. Subsection 2, opening words and (g) does not apply to the disclosure of environmental information. 7. Disclosure of environmental information pursuant to this Act shall not take place if the interests of disclosure do not outweigh the following interests: a. the protection of the environment to which this information relates; b. the security of companies and the prevention of sabotage. 8. If subsection 4, first sentence does not apply, the application of subsections 1, 2 and 7 to environmental information shall take account of whether or not the information concerns environmental emissions.” Section 11 \"Where an application concerns information contained in documents drawn up for the purpose of internal consultation, no information shall be disclosed concerning personal opinions on policy contained therein\" This is the exception that falls outside the list: \"the prevention of disproportionate advantage or disadvantage to the natural or legal persons concerned or to third parties\" as well as Section 11 \"Where an application concerns information contained in documents drawn up for the purpose of internal consultation, no information shall be disclosed concerning personal opinions on policy contained therein\" (2 point loss).
30 A harm test applies to all exceptions, so that it is only where disclosure poses a risk of actual harm to a protected interest that it may be refused. Score 4 points and then deduct 1 point for each exception which is not subject to the harm test 4 YES Section 10. Paragraph 1: \"Disclosure of information pursuant to this Act shall not take place insofar as: a. this might endanger the unity of the Crown; b. this might damage the security of the State; c. the data concerned relate to companies and manufacturing processes and were furnished to the government in confidence by natural or legal persons; d. it concerns personal data within the meaning of division 2 of chapter 2 of the Personal Data Protection Act, unless the disclosure manifestly does not constitute a breach of privacy. 2. Nor shall disclosure of information take place insofar as its importance does not outweigh one of the following: a. relations between the Netherlands and other states or international organisations; b. the economic and financial interests of the Stat e, other bodies constituted under public law or the administrative authorities referred to in section 1a, (c) and (d); c. the investigation of criminal offences and the prosecution of offenders; d. inspection, control and oversight by administrative authorities; e. respect for personal privacy; f. the importance to the addressee of being the first to note the information; g. the prevention of disproportionate advantage or disadvantage to the natural or legal persons concerned or to third parties. 3. Subsection 2, opening words and (e) does not apply in so far as the person involved has consented to the disclosure. 4. Subsection 1, opening words, (c) and (d), subsection 2, opening words and (e), and subsection 7, opening words and (a) do not apply in so far as the disclosure concerns environmental information related to environmental emissions. Notwithstanding subsection 1, opening words and (c) disclosure of environmental information shall not take place if the interests of disclosure do not outweigh the interests stated there. 5. Subsection 2, opening words and (b) applies to the disclosure of environmental information concerning confidential procedures 6. Subsection 2, opening words and (g) does not apply to the disclosure of environmental information. 7. Disclosure of environmental information pursuant to this Act shall not take place if the interests of disclosure do not outweigh the following interests: a. the protection of the environment to which this information relates; b. the security of companies and the prevention of sabotage. 8. If subsection 4, first sentence does not apply, the application of subsections 1, 2 and 7 to environmental information shall take account of whether or not the information concerns environmental emissions.” A slight harm test applies to Unity of the Crown and Security of State, but not to the other exceptions (3 points loss).
31 There is a mandatory public interest override so that information must be disclosed where this is in the overall public interest, even if this may harm a protected interest. There are ‘hard’ overrides (which apply absolutely), for example for information about human rights, corruption or crimes against humanity.Consider whether the override is subject to overarching limitations, whether it applies to only some exceptions, and whether it is mandatory.4 YES Section 10. Paragraph 2: \"Nor shall disclosure of information take place insofar as its importance does not outweigh one of the following: a. relations between the Netherlands and other states or international organisations; b. the economic and financial interests of the State, other bodies constituted under public law or the administrative authorities referred to in section 1a, (c) and (d); c. the investigation of criminal offences and the prosecution of offenders; d. inspection, control and oversight by administrative authorities; e. respect for personal privacy; f. the importance to the addressee of being the first to note the information; g. the prevention of disproportionate advantage or disadvantage to the natural or legal persons concerned or to third parties.\" Not all the exceptions are subject to a public interest override.
32 Information must be released as soon as an exception ceases to apply (for example, for after a contract tender process decision has been taken). The law contains a clause stating that exceptions to protect public interests do not apply to information which is over 20 years old.Score 1 point for each2 NO Not mentioned.
33 Clear and appropriate procedures are in place for consulting with third parties who provided information which is the subject of a request on a confidential basis. Public authorities shall take into account any objections by third parties when considering requests for information, but third parties do not have veto power over the release of information.Score: 1 point for consultation, 1 further point if original time frames must be respected and the law allows for expedited appeals.2 NO Not mentioned.
34 There is a severability clause so that where only part of a record is covered by an exception the remainder must be disclosed. Score 1 point if yes but sometimes can be refused (eg: if deletions render meaningless the document) and 2 points if partial access must always be granted2 Partially Section 5. Paragraph 2: “The applicant shall receive written notification of a refusal to disclose all or part of the information for which he applied in writing. If the application was made verbally, the applicant shall receive, on request, written notification of the refusal. This option shall be brought to the attention of the applicant.” It\'s not clearly defined, but can be deduced that when part of a document is covered by an exception, the rest of the document shall be granted to the access.
35 When refusing to provide access to information, public authorities must a) state the exact legal grounds and reason(s) for the refusal and b) inform the applicant of the relevant appeals procedures.Score Y/N: 1 point for a and 1 point for b2 YES Section 5: “1. The decision on an application for information shall be given verbally or in writing. 2. The applicant shall receive written notification of a refusal to disclose all or part of the information for which he applied in writing. If the application was made verbally, the applicant shall receive, on request, written notification of the refusal. This option shall be brought to the attention of the applicant.” Netherland Administrative Law Act and in enforceable regulations related with it. In the FOIA, the concerned applicant will be notified of the refusal, but there is no mention about an obligation to give reasons or to inform about the relevant appeal procedures. This can be found in the Netherland Administrative Law Act.


Appeals

Indicator

Description

Scoring instructions
MAX score
Findings

Points

Article

Comments
36 The law offers an internal appeal which is simple, free of charge and completed within clear timelines (20 working days or less).Score 2 points if the internal appeal fulfills these criteria, 1 point if an appeal is offered that does not fulfill this criteria, 0 for no internal appeals.2 YES Netherland Administrative Law Act, Chapter 6 (about appeals on decisions). Section 5: “1. The notice of objection or appeal shall be signed and shall contain at least: (a) the name and the address of the person lodging it; (b) the date; (c) a description of the order against which the objection or appeal is brought; (d) the grounds of the objection or appeal. 2. A copy of the order to which the dispute relates shall if possible be lodged with the notice of objection. 3. If the notice of objection or appeal is stated in a foreign language and a translation is necessary for the proper processing of the objection or appeal, the person lodging it shall arrange for a translation.” Section 7: “The period for lodging a notice of objection or appeal shall be six weeks.” And Section 8: “The period shall start on the day after that on which the order is published in the prescribed manner.”
37 Requesters have the right to lodge an (external) appeal with an independent administrative oversight body (e.g. an information commission or ombudsman). 1 for partial, 2 for yes2 NO No oversight body listed.
38 The member(s) of the oversight body are appointed in a manner that is protected against political interference and have security of tenure so they are protected against arbitrary dismissal (procedurally/substantively) once appointed.Score: 1 point for appointment procedure, 1 point for security of tenure2 NO No oversight body listed.
39 The oversight body reports to and has its budget approved by the parliament, or other effective mechanisms are in place to protect its financial independence.Score 1 point for reports to parliament, 1 point for budget approved by parliament2 NO No oversight body listed.
40 There are prohibitions on individuals with strong political connections from being appointed to this body and requirements of professional expertise.Score 1 point for not politically connected, 1 point for professional expertise2 NO No oversight body listed.
41 The independent oversight body has the necessary mandate and power to perform its functions, including to review classified documents and inspect the premises of public bodies.Score 1 point for reviewing classified documents, 1 point for inspection powers2 NO No oversight body listed.
42 The decisions of the independent oversight body are binding. Score N=0, Y=2 points2 NO No oversight body listed.
43 In deciding an appeal, the independent oversight body has the power to order appropriate remedies for the requester, including the declassification of information. 1 for partial, 2 for fully2 NO No oversight body listed.
44 Requesters have the right to lodge a judicial appeal.1 for partially, 2 for fully.2 YES Netherland Administrative Law Act, Chapter 8 (about appeals to a court). Section 1: “1. An interested party may appeal to the court against an order.”
45 Appeals to the oversight body (where applicable, or to the judiciary if no such body exists) are free of charge and do not require legal assistance.1 for free, 1 for no lawyer required. 2 YES The process is free of charge and there is no need to require a lawyer (based on the practice).
46 The grounds for appeal to the oversight body (where applicable, or to the judiciary if no such body exists) are broad (including not only refusals to provide information but also refusals to provide information in the form requested, administrative silence and other breach of timelines, charging excessive fees, etc.).Score 1 point for appealing refusals, additional points for appealing other violations.4 YES Netherland Administrative Law Act, Chapter 8 (about appeals to a court).
47 Clear procedures, including timelines, are in place for dealing with external appeals (oversight/judicial).Score 1 point for clear procedures, 1 point for timelines. 2 YES Netherland Administrative Law Act, Chapter 6 (about appeals on decisions). Section 7: “The period for lodging a notice of objection or appeal shall be six weeks.” And Section 8: “The period shall start on the day after that on which the order is published in the prescribed manner.”
48 In the appeal process (oversight/judicial/) the government bears the burden of demonstrating that it did not operate in breach of the rules.Score Y/N and award 2 points for yes. 2 YES Netherland Administrative Law Act.
49 The external appellate body has the power to impose appropriate structural measures on the public authority (e.g. to conduct more training or to engage in better record management)1 for partial, 2 for fully. 2 NO No oversight body listed.


Sanctions & Proteccions

Indicator

Description

Scoring instructions
MAX score
Findings

Points

Article

Comments
50 Sanctions may be imposed on those who wilfully act to undermine the right to information, including through the unauthorised destruction of information.Score 1 point for sanctions for underming right, 1 point for destruction of documents 2 YES Netherlands Criminal Law.
51 There is a system for redressing the problem of public authorities which systematically fail to disclose information or underperform (either through imposing sanctions on them or requiring remedial actions of them).Score 1 point for either remedial action or sanctions, 2 points for both 2 NO Not mentioned.
52 The independent oversight body and its staff are granted legal immunity for acts undertaken in good faith in the exercise or performance of any power, duty or function under the RTI Law. Others are granted similar immunity for the good faith release of information pursuant to the RTI Law.Score 1 for oversight body, 1 for immunity for others2 NO Not mentioned.
53 There are legal protections against imposing sanctions on those who, in good faith, release information which discloses wrongdoing (i.e. whistleblowers).Score 2 for strong protections, 1 for moderate protections2 YES Netherlands law on whistleblowing.


Promotional measures

Indicator

Description

Scoring instructions
MAX score
Findings

Points

Article

Comments
54 Public authorities are required to appoint dedicated officials (information officers) or units with a responsibility for ensuring that they comply with their information disclosure obligations.Score Y/N, Y=2 points2 NO Not mentioned.
55 A central body, such as an information commission(er) or government department, is given overall responsibility for promoting the right to information. Score Y/N, Y=2 points2 NO Not mentioned.
56 Public awareness-raising efforts (e.g. producing a guide for the public or introducing RTI awareness into schools) are required to be undertaken by law. Score Y/N, Y=2 points2 NO Not mentioned.
57 A system is in place whereby minimum standards regarding the management of records are set and applied. Score Y/N, Y=2 points2 YES Netherlands Archiefwet [Archival law]
58 Public authorities are required to create and update lists or registers of the documents in their possession, and to make these public. Score Y/N, Y=2 points2 NO Not mentioned.
59 Training programs for officials are required Score Y/N, Y=2 points2 NO Not mentioned.
60 Public authorities are required to report annually on the actions they have taken to implement their disclosure obligations. This includes statistics on requests received and how they were dealt with. Score Y/N, Y=2 points2 NO Not mentioned.
61 A central body, such as an information commission(er) or government department, has an obligation to present a consolidated report to the legislature on implementation of the law. Score Y/N, Y=2 points2 NO Not mentioned.