HCLU wins case against the Ministry of Finance

The case was started against the Ministry of Finance after it denied access to data on public spending deficit of a hundred billion HUF.

The plaint was submitted on 4 Sept, 2006. The Ministry’s lawyer argued that the data requested by HCLU was only an estimate regarding an indefinite future figure that is not a data, therefore does not fall within the jurisdiction of Act LXIII of 1992 (on data protection and freedom of information).

According to HCLU’s attorney on that argument any kind of information or knowledge posessed by a state institution is a public interest data according to the Hungarian Freedom of Information Act. And also referring to the press conference where the deficit was announced it was clear that the estimate was based on relevant information. And also there was a precedent court decision saying the definition of data cannot be strictly interpreted as it is defined in the dictionary but in a broader context.

The court has dismissed the defendant’s argument and obliged the Ministry to publish the requested data within 15 days from receiving the verdict.

Learn more about the case

 

 

Share

Related articles

The state, too, can access my phone records?

In its judgement, the Court of Justice of the European Union has declared the Data Retention Directive invalid. Based on the Directive, service providers were keeping phone records and other personal data for 6 months. We have decided to undertake the lengthy process of actually eliminating this European law in Hungary.

Profit-making through FOI?

A draft bill on the re-use of public sector information submitted to the Hungarian Parliament by the government would make the national FOI legislation highly unpredictable - according to the HCLU and K-Monitor, major Hungarian NGOs working for transparency and freedom of information. The proposal intends to harmonize Hungarian freedom of information legislation with the EU law by implementing the 2003/98/EC Directive on the re-use of public sector information. The latter is to be revised soon, due to a proposal of the European Commission. The HCLU and K-Monitor ask legislative authorities to withdraw their draft proposal due to the following reasons.

Whistleblower Protection in Central and Eastern Europe

K-Monitor Association and the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union organized a project on Legal Regulation of Public Interest Disclosures in Post-Soviet Democracies. The two Hungarian NGOs created a virtual conference on whistleblowing protection with an interactive discussion surface in English as well as an online content in form of this website. For the implementation of the “virtual conference”, K-Monitor and HCLU also invited NGOs working in the field of anti-corruption from Bosnia, Croatia, Serbia, Slovenia, Poland, Moldova and Hungary to take part in the project.