A recording of the London Group meeting on Freedom of Information
SCL members: Claim CPD for viewing this webinar - 1 hour
SCL members can qualify for CPD by viewing this webinar and then answering a set of questions on the content of the event. To claim your CPD first watch the webinar and then return to this page and click on the questions link below. You will need to log-on before you can access the questions. Once you have successfully answered enough questions, your online training record will be updated for future reference.
The second anniversary of the implementation of the Freedom of Information Act is rapidly approaching. The true effects of such a far-reaching change to UK legislation are only now beginning to take shape and the legal adviser must know how the Act is operating on the ground to provide truly effective advice.
This webinar will update you on the latest developments bringing together the views of the regulator and the practitioner. Richard Thomas, The Information Commissioner, will identify any emerging problem areas and the commonly asked questions. Philip Coppel will give his views on how the Act is working in practice and highlight some areas where the law has developed in unanticipated ways.
Together they provide unique insights into the very latest thinking on FOI.
Richard Thomas has been the Information Commissioner since 2 December 2002. He is the independent supervisory authority for the Data Protection Act 1998, the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and the Environmental Regulations 2004 all of which are fundamentally concerned with good information handling. The Commissioner is responsible for promoting good practice. e has put openness for public bodies and respect for personal information at the heart of his vision for the organisation.
Richard’s previous career has straddled public, private and voluntary sectors: Director of Public Policy, Clifford Chance (1992-2002); Director of Consumer Affairs, Office of Fair Trading (1986-92); Legal officer and Head of Public Affairs, National Consumer Council (1979-86); Solicitor, Citizens Advice Bureau Legal Service (1974-79); Trainee and Solicitor, Freshfields (1971-74)
During the course of his career, Richard has also held various public appointments including: Director, Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS); Board Member, National Consumer Council; Member, Independent Television Commission Advertising Advisory Committee; Member, CBI e-Business Council; Member, Lord Chancellor’s Civil Justice Review Advisory Committee.
Philip Coppel has a varied practice that embraces all aspects of public law and a wide range of commercial law. He came to the English Bar in 1994, having spent 3 years in a large firm of City solicitors and having previously practised in Australia.
Within public law, Philip's practice includes judicial review and tribunal work, planning and environmental law. He covers all aspects of local government law, including highways, elections and rating disputes. Within commercial law, he regularly acts in contractual and tortious disputes. He increasingly acts in disputes that raise both public law and private law issues.
Philip Coppel regularly acts for and against public authorities, including Central Government departments and bodies, local authorities and statutory agencies. He is on the Attorney-General's "B-Panel" of Counsel in Civil Matters.
Philip has a particular interest in the law relating to the disclosure of government-held information. His Information Rights, published by Sweet & Maxwell in 2004, gives an authoritative analysis of all rights of access to government information in the United Kingdom and he has lectured extensively on the topic.