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Do you often receive FOI requests for commercial information? If so, do they often request sensitive information on who has bid for pieces of work and who you have existing contracts with?

If so and you want to learn how to best apply the necessary exemptions – then our Managing FOI Requests for Commercial and Contractual Information course is just for you.

Attend to improve your understanding of what the legislation states about FOI and commercial interests; learn how to identify requests for commercial information; manage vexatious requests, apply the prejudice test and draft a refusal notice.

Unlocking the Power of Virtual

Our virtual courses have been designed with you in mind. From group exercises in breakout rooms to live chat, whiteboards and interactive polls, we use a range of tools and techniques to ensure that you can connect with your trainer; network and share best practice with your peers and leave the day with the skills you need.

Our courses provide you with an interactive and engaging learning environment that can be accessed from any location, helping you to continue to connect, learn and grow. Click here to discover more!

Please note we will use Zoom to virtually deliver this course.

trainer photo
Lynn Wyeth
Information Governance Manager - Leicester City Council

Lynn is the Information Governance Manager at Leicester City Council. Having previously worked as an MP and MEP’s political assistant, Lynn moved to her local council where she now oversees the Council’s Information Governance agenda including data protection, FOI, information sharing, RIPA and CCTV.

She has also helped health organisations with their information governance procedures.

Lynn is the author of two books, A Practical Guide to Handling Freedom of Information Requests and Data Protection: Compliance in Practice.

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Learning Outcomes

  • Ascertain what FOI legislation states about commercial interests
  • Learn how to manage vexatious requests
  • Identify requests for commercial information
  • Apply the prejudice test and Section 43 of the FOI Act
  • Learn how to draft a refusal notice
All the Understanding ModernGov courses are Continuing Professional Development (CPD) certified, with signed certificates available upon request for event.

Enquire About In-House Training

To speak to someone about a bespoke training programme, please contact us:
0800 542 9414
[email protected]


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09:25 - 09:30


09:30 - 10:00

Trainer’s Welcome and Clarification of Learning Objectives

10:00 - 10:45

FOI Legislation and Commercial Interests

  • Gain a brief overview of the Freedom of Information Act
  • Understand what the FOI legislation states about FOI and commercial interests
  • Gain a better understanding of section 43 of the FOI Act
  • Understand how to apply section 41 of the FOI Act
  • Learn what action to take if the information is environmental
10:45 - 11:00

Morning Break

11:00 - 12:00

Identifying Requests for Commercial Information

  • Establish what is commercially sensitive information: trade secrets, contractual and procurement arrangements
  • Learn how to identify an FOI request for commercial information
12:00 - 13:00

Managing Vexatious Requests

  • Identify vexatious requests
  • Gain strategies and techniques on handling vexatious requests
13:00 - 14:00


14:00 - 14:45

Workshop: Applying the Prejudice Test

Through a practical exercise, learn how apply the prejudice test.

  • Identify the negative consequence of disclosure
  • Learn how to establish the link between disclosure and negative consequence
  • Predict whether a negative consequence is most likely going to happen
  • Apply the exemptions set out in Section 43
14:45 - 15:00

Afternoon Break

15:00 - 16:00

Workshop: Drafting a Refusal Notice

  • Identify key points to include
  • Learn how to write a refusal notice
  • Establish what to say and how to communicate it
16:00 - 16:15

Round Up and Key Takeaways

Pose specific questions relating to FOI to the trainer who will provide tailored feedback and encourage discussion around the topics that arise