On 1 October 2009, the Data Protection (Notification and Notification Fees) (Amendment) Regulations will come into force introducing a two-tier notification fee system for data controllers.

Currently, all data controllers pay a flat annual notification fee of £35. From the 1 October, data controllers with an annual turnover of £25.9 million and 250 or more members of staff will pay increased fees of £500. Public authorities with more than 250 members of staff will also pay the increased fee. All other data controllers and charities, small occupational pension schemes and business that have been in existence for less than one month will continue to pay £35.

The Information Commissioner’s Office has published guidance, which explains the new notification system and how a business should assess whether its turnover and staff numbers fall over the higher fee threshold. The guidance also explains why the two-tier system has been introduced. The ICO says that the higher fee is directly proportionate to the level of resources invested by the ICO in regulating larger organisations.

Click here for a copy of the ICO’s guidance