Freedom of Information

The Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) gives members of the community a right to:

  • access CFA documents (subject to exemptions)
  • ask CFA to change or remove incorrect information about you
  • seek a review of CFA's decision about access to a document or amendment of your personal record 

What you cannot access:

CFA can refuse access to certain documents or information that are exempt. Under the FOI Act exempt documents may include:

  • Cabinet documents
  • Documents covered by legal professional privilege, such as legal advice
  • Documents containing personal information about other people (names, address and contact details)
  • Documents containing information provided to CFA in confidence
  • Documents containing information provided to CFA by a business, and
  • Other matters set out in the FOI Act

This information should not discourage you from asking for access as each document is assessed on its own merits before a decision is made.

How to make a FOI request:

Under the FOI Act a request must be:

  • in writing
  • accompanied by an application fee of $31.80 (subject to change on 1 July each year)
  • provide clear enough information about the documents you want
  • provide an address for reply

You have the option to submit your request through letter, email, or one of our forms below.

If you are an unrepresented applicant you can use the CFA Freedom of Information request - Unrepresented

If you are a solicitor you can use the CFA Freedom of Information request - Represented designed for solicitors, law firms, unions and other parties representing FOI applicants. 

The request should be sent to the FOI Officer at:

Freedom of Information Officer
8 Lakeside Drive

Telephone: (61 3) 9262 8512

What happens to your request?

Once CFA has received your valid FOI request and application fee, CFA must respond to you in writing as soon as practicable but not later than 30 days outlining its decision on your request.

If CFA refuses you access to the documents sought, you can appeal to the Information Commissioner for a review of the decision. You must do so within 28 days of the date the decision was sent to you. The Information Commissioner has 30 days to conduct its review, unless the applicant agrees to an extended period in writing. The lodgement of a request for a review is not subject to any fees or costs. For further information see

If you wish to appeal further to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal you must do so within 60 days of the date you were notified of the Commissioner's decision.

Are there other ways to access information?

Yes, you can access some information without submitting a FOI request. See below:

  • As part of open and transparent decision-making, we maintain a range of documents for publication or inspection by the public.
  • Some information may be available from us or under other laws, either with or without a charge.

For more information, visit our Freedom of Information Part II Information Statement page below. Additionally, our FOI officer can help you work out if you need to submit a FOI request.

Need more information?

Further information regarding Freedom of Information can be obtained from the Department of Justice and Regulation Freedom of Information Online website.

More information in this section

fire reporting

Fire Reports Request

Fire Incident Reports and/or Fire Investigation Reports are available for purchase from our Fire and Incident Reporting Systems (FIRS) department and are therefore not subject to or available through FOI.

writing on paper

Freedom of Information Part II Information Statement

The Freedom of Information Part II Information Statement demonstrates how CFA is making information readily available to reduce the need for members of the public to submit requests under the Freedom of Information Act 1982.



Page last updated:  Tuesday, 23 April 2024 3:52:54 PM