Re-use regulations

The Re-use of Public Sector Information Regulations establishes a framework for the effective re-use of public sector information.

What is the Re-use of Public Sector Information Regulations

Public sector information is a valuable resource that can be useful to the private sector and to citizens. The Re-use of Public Sector Information Regulations establishes a framework for the effective re-use of public sector information.

Access to a large proportion of public sector information is provided under Freedom of Information legislation. The RoPSI Regulations do not change the access provisions. Instead, they provide a framework for re-use of information once access has been obtained. The regulations do not apply unless the information

  • has already been provided
  • is accessible by means other than making a request under Freedom of Information legislation, including our Publication Scheme.

Using the information

In all cases you should assume that the re-use of the information is not permitted, unless you have been specifically informed that you are allowed to re-use the information.

Where it is confirmed in writing, you will be free to use any information supplied for:

  • your own non-commercial research
  • private study purposes

The written permission may also state that the information can be used for any other purpose allowed by a limitation or exception in copyright law, such as news reporting. There may be further conditions, such as:

  • any use must be in context and must not be misleading
  • any other type of re-use, such as by publishing the information in digital or analogue form, including on the internet, will require the permission of the copyright owner

It may be that permission will not be granted, in which case a reason for refusal will be provided.

For information where the copyright is owned by another person or organisation, you must apply to the copyright owner to obtain their permission.

What RoPSI Regulations do not apply to?

  • Information that falls outside the scope of the public task of the service. This covers situations where SFRS produces documents that are not directly related to its core responsibilities.
  • Information in which the relevant intellectual property rights are owned or controlled by a person or organisation other than SFRS. For example, we may hold documents that include material where the copyright is owned by a third party. This does not prevent the service from authorising the re-use of those elements that are owned by it.
  • Information exempt from release under access to information legislation.

How do I make an application?

Anyone has a right to request to re-use information held by us. If you wish to submit a request to re-use information you should:

  • submit your request in writing
  • give your name and address
  • specify which information you want to re-use
  • state the purpose for which the information is to be re-used

The service must normally respond to requests before the end of the 20th working day, beginning with the day after receipt. The time can be extended in complex cases.

A response means either:

  • refusing to give permission to re-use, in which case a valid reason will be provided
  • supplying the information requested
  • offering terms and conditions for re-use, sometimes in the form of a licence.

In most cases, information will be made available to re-use. This is as described by the Scottish Government’s Open Data Strategy and Resource Pack, available under an open licence.

We provide open data to the Scottish Government’s dataset website.

Make a request

If you have any queries or wish to make a request, please contact:


Freedom of Information Team

Scottish Fire and Rescue Service

Westburn Drive


G72 7NA



You have the right to complain to the authority if you have:

  • made a request and are unhappy with the handling of your response from us, or you
  • not received a response within 20 working days

Review of decisions

Where you have received a response and are unhappy with it, you can request a review by the authority. Please address any requests for a review to:

Information Governance Manager/Data Protection Officer



If following the outcome of the review you are still not happy, you can make an appeal to the Information Commissioner's Office:


Information Commissioner's Office (opens new window)


Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane

You should raise your concerns within 3 months of your last meaningful contact with us.


Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane

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