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Access to Information and Privacy Branch

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Access to Information and Privacy Branch (ATIP) provides formal responses to access to information requests under the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act.


The Privacy Act

The Privacy Act provides individuals the right to seek access to their personal information held by the federal government and governs the collection, use, disclosure, retention and disposal of personal information.

Requests for personal information pertaining to the requester and held by the RCMP should be made to the RCMP under the Privacy Act. The requester must either: Be present in Canada, be a Canadian Citizen, or be a Permanent Resident.

Submit a request under the Privacy Act

Section 13(2) of the Privacy Act states that a request for access to personal information shall be made in writing to the government institution that has control of the information.

Requests must include sufficient details, such as the location and nature of the records, to enable an experienced employee of the RCMP, with a reasonable effort, to identify and retrieve the records that are being requested

For the RCMP to process a Privacy Act request, we require the following information:

  • Requester’s full name
  • Requester’s date of birth
  • information about the type of records that are being requested
  • specific location(s) to conduct our search such as towns or detachments
  • a return address to send the information to
  • Requester’s signature
  • There is no cost associated with the processing of a Privacy Act request.
  • RCMP file number if available (Although RCMP file numbers are not required, the more information provided will allow the ATIP branch to provide you with the specific documents you are seeking access to.)

Requests for personal information that is not the requester's must be made under the Access to Information Act. Please refer to the section on the Access to Information Act.

To make a request for personal information you may:

Online Request:

Use the ATIP Online Request service for a faster, easier and more convenient way to submit personal information requests. Apply online today to save time.

Written Request:

Complete the RCMP specific Privacy Act form, the Treasury Board Privacy Act form or simply write a letter describing the personal information that you are seeking and send it to:

RCMP Mail Stop #61
73 Leikin Drive
Ottawa Ontario
K1A 0R2


The Access to Information Act

The Access to Information Act gives both individuals and corporations present in Canada the right to seek access to federally controlled information and records.

Submit a request under the Access to Information Act

Requests must include sufficient detail such as the location and nature of the records to enable an experienced employee of the RCMP, with a reasonable effort, to identify and retrieve the records that are being requested.

Note that:

  • Although we do not need an original signature on an Access request, there is a processing fee of $5.00 which is needed before work is started. Payment can be made by cheque or money order to "The Receiver General of Canada", or by cash. Credit cards are only accepted through online requests.
  • As with Privacy Act requests, every individual who is a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident within Canada , as well as businesses and corporations within the country are permitted to make an Access to Information request.
  • If you are not a Canadian citizen or permanent resident and you require information you will need to find a representative that falls within the above noted criteria.
  • In the event that you are a Canadian citizen living outside of the country, please provide proof of citizenship with your request, in the form of a photocopy of your birth certificate or passport.
  • Requests for personal information that is not the requester's must include signed, recent (less than one year old), written consent from the individual to whom the personal information belongs. To facilitate processing requests for personal information, we also recommend that the consent of all individuals who may have personal information included in the records sought be obtained and provided with the request.

To make an access to information request you may either:

Online Request:

Use the ATIP Online Request service for a faster, easier and more convenient way to submit access to information requests. Apply online today to save time.

Written Request:

Complete the RCMP specific ATIP form, the Treasury Board ATIP form or write a letter describing the information that you are seeking and send it to:

RCMP Mail Stop #61
73 Leikin Drive
Ottawa Ontario
K1A 0R2


Frequently Asked Questions

Questions

Answers

What is considered personal information?
  • Section 3(a)-(i) of the Privacy Act outlines the basis of what is considered personal information. Some examples include but are not limited to:
    • home address
    • age and gender
    • blood type
    • race, ethnic and national origin
    • credit card numbers
    • criminal records
    • educational history
    • financial history
    • fingerprints
    • medical history
    • any identifiable number including SIN numbers
    • names
    • religious beliefs
    • telephone numbers
    • employment history within a non-governmental organization
    • views or opinions of another individual about the individual
What is considered non-personal information?

Non-personal information (which may be requested under the Access to Information Act ) includes employment information of an individual working for the federal government such as:

  • job classification
  • work related correspondence
  • details of employment contract
  • salary range
  • work telephone and fax number
  • job title
  • security level of position
Who can access personal information?
  • Every individual who is a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident within Canada has a right to seek access to their personal information held by a federal institution.
  • If you are not a Canadian citizen or permanent resident and you require information, such as a motor vehicle accident investigated by the RCMP, you will need to find a representative that falls within the above noted criteria.
  • If you are a Canadian citizen living outside of the country , please provide proof of citizenship with your request, in the form of a photocopy of your birth certificate or Canadian passport.
  • Any information deemed personal that is held by the federal government can only be released to the individual it pertains to , unless that person has given consent to a third party allowing them to have access to that information.
  • Personal information about a deceased person under the control of a federal institution is still considered personal for 20 years after the date of death , and may not be released. This includes information gathered by the RCMP during an investigation.
  • In cases where personal information is requested and consent is unavailable for example, fatalities , Section 8(2)c of the Privacy Act may permit the release of the information for the purpose of complying with a subpoena or court order.
  • The Privacy Act does not make provisions for spouses or family members to access a deceased's personal information that may be contained in a RCMP operational file.
  • In relation to the administration of an estate , the Privacy Act Regulations does permit the release of certain information to allow the executor to carry out their duties. However, there is an onus on the requester to demonstrate that disclosure is required to settle the estate.
Will I receive more information if I retain the services of a lawyer or have an Member of Parliament make the request on my behalf?

No. In the eyes of the two Acts, there is no difference between an individual, lawyer, the media, or politicians. Whether it is a Privacy Act request, or an Access to Information request, everyone is considered equal and no preferential treatment is given. You will receive the same information if you send in the request yourself or if you hire a lawyer to act on your behalf. Furthermore, a request is not processed faster if it is sent by someone representing you . Requests are handled on a first come first serve basis . Community status or professional titles will not slow down or expedite the processing of a request.

Can I get my criminal record with a Privacy Act request?

No. Your criminal record can only be attained through a fingerprint submission. For information on how to obtain a criminal records check please see the RCMP Canadian Criminal Real Time Identification Services website.

I work for an insurance company/law firm and wish to have a copy of an RCMP file. Can I submit an Access to Information request to receive a copy of that file?

You may submit the request, however if you do not have written, signed consent from your client or from any of the parties involved in the file, you will be limited on the information that you will receive. Without consent from the individuals, you will not have access to any personal information within that file and thus you may not receive the documents you are seeking. In order to ensure that you will get the information you require, have your client sign a consent form that includes the following:

  • your client's full name and date of birth
  • your client's consent for the RCMP to disclose his/her personal information to you (Most RCMP operational files involve more than one individual - it is recommended you obtain consent from as many parties involved in the incident as possible . The more people the RCMP receive consent from, the more information we may be able to release to you.)
  • an original signature (We cannot accept a fax or photocopy)
Can I submit an Access to Information request to receive answers to questions that I have about your organization?

No. The Access to Information Act was established to provide a right to seek access to (or copies of) documents held by an organization. The Act does not make provisions for organizations to create new records or to answer specific questions.

What are the costs involved with making a Privacy Act or Access to Information Act request?
  • Privacy Act
    No costs are incurred (it's your personal information and you have a right to seek access to it)
  • Access to Information
    There is an initial $5.00 processing fee , which covers the first 5 hours of research time for a request. If a request requires more than 5 hours to research, a fee estimate will be calculated and sent to you detailing the costs. The cost of research beyond the 5 hours mark is $10 per hour . There are also provisions for reproduction fees chargeable to the requester
I have received my package from ATIP and I am not satisfied with the results. What are my options?
  • It is the right for anyone who is requesting information from an ATIP office to file a complaint in relation to their request.
  • Access to Information Act complaint please send correspondence to:
    The Information Commissioner of Canada
    30 Victoria Street
    Gatineau, Quebec
    K1A 1H3
  • Privacy Act complaint please send correspondence to:
    Privacy Commissioner
    30 Victoria Street
    Gatineau, Quebec
    K1A 1H3
I have a complaint about how the RCMP collected, used, disclosed, retained and/or disposed of my personal information. What are my options?
  • Only the Privacy Commissioner of Canada can investigate complaints of this nature. Provide a detailed letter to the Office of the Privacy Commissioner outlining your complaint to the following address:

    Privacy Commissioner
    30 Victoria Street
    Gatineau, Quebec
    K1A 1H3

For further information on any issues concerning Access to Information or Privacy, please contact the ATIP Branch by e-mail or by phone at 613-843-6800.