East Devon District Council

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Policy Policy for unreasonable customer behaviour and vexatious requests

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4. What is a vexatious request?

We define a vexatious request as:

‘A request that is likely to cause distress, disruption, irritation, without any proper or justified cause’.

A vexatious request may include one or two individual requests for information, or may form part of a wider pattern of vexatious behaviour.  For example, if there is a wider dispute or it is the latest in a lengthy series of overlapping requests.

However, we will not automatically refuse a request simply because it is made in the context of a dispute or if it forms part of a series of requests.

We will consider each request for information on its own merits and we will not automatically refuse a request because the individual may have caused problems in the past.  We will ensure that we consider whether the request (and not the requester) is vexatious with our focus being on the request itself.

Where a request is considered to be vexatious we may make the decision not to provide the information.