In need of research material?
The Legal Register Centre can disclose information held in its registers and systems for research purposes. Researchers can submit a request for information or apply the Legal Register Centre for a research permit.
Information held in the registers maintained by the Legal Register Centre is largely confidential. Public access to information held in registers is regulated by the Act on the Openness of Government Activities and the Personal Data Act. Certain special acts, such as the Criminal Records Act, can also restrict public access to information. The Legal Register Centre is the data controller that decides on the disclosure of information held in its registers.
You need to submit a request for any information held by the Legal Register Centre, regardless of whether the information is publicly available or confidential. Your request for information should include your personal information, a description of the requested information and its intended purpose. Please send all requests for information, along with any enquiries, by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are a researcher, you need a research permit to access confidential information. We recommend that you use the Ministry of Justice’s application form.
What to attach to your permit application:
-Your research plan
-Description of the file concerning your research
-Ethics committee opinion (medical research)
You can send your research permit application either as an e-mail attachment to email@example.com or by regular mail to Oikeusrekisterikeskus, PL 157, 13101 Hämeenlinna, Finland.
In your research plan, the information held in the register must be linked to a specific project. An appropriate research plan should provide as much detail as possible on the research task, material and methods. For example, your research plan should specify the information you need for carrying out your research and why such information is necessary for the project.
In addition, include in your research plan:
-Your research schedule
-Information about the publication of your outcomes
-Usability of the outcomes
-Objectives of the research project
-Responsibilities of the persons participating in the research
-How the research material is handled during the research project and after its
If your research project generates a personal data file specified in the Personal Data act, you must attach a description of the file to your research permit application. Before you begin any research that requires the processing of personal data, you should draw up a description of the file that will be created during the research. The description is drawn up to fulfil the principle of openness in the control of data files.
The Legal Register Centre recommends that you use the Data Protection Ombudsman’s form to draw up the description of the file.
Read the instructions for how to write a description of the file for a research project here.
Under the Medical Research Act, before any research is undertaken, the ethics committee shall have given a favourable opinion on the research plan. Prior ethical evaluation is mandatory for all medical research.
In certain cases, the Legal Register Centre can disclose information free of charge, for example when an electronically saved document is sent to the requester by e-mail, or when the disclosure of a document falls within the authority’s obligation to give advice, consult or inform and the information is readily available. For example, statistics and reports that have already been drawn up, along with record data, are often disclosed free of charge. As the general rule, the information must be readily available.
If the requested information is not readily available, the Legal Register Centre charges EUR 50,93 per hour plus VAT at 24% for retrieving and disclosing information for research or other similar purposes, based on the Centre’s decision on the criteria for charging fees.
If the Legal Register Centre must use the services of an external application provider to retrieve the information, the Centre will recover the cost of using the external provider as agreed separately in each case. To find out more about any potential costs of information retrieval, please write to firstname.lastname@example.org.