Exemptions to the specific practices of Code of Practice for Statistics

Exemptions are rare. They have mainly been agreed where it is not possible to give contact information for the responsible statistician for security reasons.  

Prior to a change to the Code of Practice of Statistics in May 2022, an exemption was required to release statistics at a time other than 9.30am. The May 2022 change to practice T3.6 enabled alternative release times (ARTs) to be used, when granted by the Director General for Regulation. Release time exemptions that were granted before May 2022 have been converted to alternative release times. See our policy page for further information and the list of statistics granted an ART. 

Should circumstances call for an exemption for a specific practice, Heads of Profession should raise the matter with the Director General for Regulation, Ed Humpherson. The Office for Statistics Regulation supports sensible changes to existing production practices and will quickly consider any requests for exemptions that are in the public interest. 

T2.9 In rare circumstances, an organisation may not be able to implement a specific practice of the Code. In this situation, the Chief Statistician/Head of Profession for Statistics should request an exemption from that practice of the Code from the Director General for Regulation and publish details of the exemption.


Exemptions granted by the Director General for Regulation on behalf of the UK Statistics Authority

ProducerStatisticsExempted practice Reason Date granted
Probation Board for Northern IrelandAll the Probation Board for Northern Ireland’s statistical releasesName and contact details of the lead statistician to be included in published statisticsSecurity24 September 2020
Office of the Police Ombudsman NIAll Office of the Police Ombudsman Northern Ireland statistical releasesName and contact details of the lead statistician to be included in published statisticsSecurity24 September 2020
Public Prosecution Service for Northern IrelandPublic Prosecution Service (PPS) statistical releasesName and contact details of the lead statistician to be included in published statisticsSecurity
Northern Ireland OfficeTerrorism legislation statisticsName and contact details of the lead statistician to be included in published statisticsSecurity22 October 2018
Welsh GovernmentMid-year population estimates, Electoral roll statistics, National population projections9:30 release timeTo carry out adequate quality assurance in time for a 12:30pm publication, three hours after access to data at the time of the ONS release at 9:30am22 March 2018 – converted to ART on 05 May 2022
Welsh GovernmentAnnual survey of hours and earnings, Business demography, Business register and employment survey, Regional gross disposable household income, Regional gross domestic product (quarterly), Regional gross domestic product and gross value added (annual), Research and development expenditure, Sub-regional productivity9:30 release timeTo carry out adequate quality assurance in time for a 12:30pm publication, three hours after access to data at the time of the ONS release at 9:30am22 March 2018 – closed on 05 May 2022
Department for EducationKey stage 2 assessment results9:30 release timeBecause of the compressed timescale, it is highly unlikely that DfE can release these results at 9.30am, but expects to publish them as soon as possible after 11am5 July 2016 – converted to ART on 05 May 2022
Office for National StatisticsNational AccountsTo correct errors, and alert stakeholders, promptlyThe complexity of compiling the UK National Accounts means that it is, on occasions, not in the user interest for ONS to spend time correcting data immediately21 March 2016
Department for Business, Innovation and SkillsExport licensesName and contact details of the lead statistician to be included in published statisticsSecurity4 June 2015
Home OfficeScientific Procedures on Living Animals9:30 release timeStatutory obligation to lay document before Parliament25 June 2015 – converted to ART on 05 May 2022
Department of Justice Northern IrelandDJNI statistical reportsName and contact details of the lead statistician to be included in published statisticsSecurity16 April 2013
Department for Environment, Food and Rural AffairsTuberculosis in CattleName and contact details of the lead statistician to be included in published statisticsSecurity24 Sept ember 2012
Ministry of DefenceMoD statistical reportsName and contact details of the lead statistician to be included in published statisticsSecurity7 February 2012
Department of Health and Social Care [then Department of Health]AbortionsName and contact details of the lead statistician to be included in published statisticsSecurity19 December 2011
Department of Agriculture and Rural DevelopmentNI weekly Agricultural Market Report9:30 release timeAs a weekly release to issue as soon as it is available on Thursday afternoons, rather than wait until 9.30am the following day14 October 2011 – converted to ART on 05 May 2022
Office for National StatisticsRPICorrect errors discovered in statistical reports, and alert stakeholders, promptlyPractical problems caused to users, particularly in relation to the use of the RPI for index-linking30 September 2011
Office for National StatisticsRPIThe relevant statistical Head of Profession has the sole responsibility for deciding on statistical methods, standards and procedures, and on the content and timing of statistical releasesThe Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007 requires the Chancellor rather than ONS’s Head of Profession to approve fundamental changes to the coverage and basic calculation of the RPI in certain circumstances30 September 2011
Police Service of Northern IrelandPSNI statistical reportsName and contact details of the lead statistician to be included in published statisticsSecurity16 August 2011
Office for National Statistics - EXPIREDONS statistical reports9:30 release timeInitial introduction of new website – ONS couldn’t guarantee 9.30am release17 January 2011

Producer bodyStatisticsNature of exemptionDurationRelevant links if any
Office for National StatisticsCOVID-19 Infection Survey ResultsPublish statistics at 12 pm on Wednesday 19 January instead of 2 pmUntil January 2022-
Northern Ireland Statistics and Research AgencyWeekly deaths statisticsPublish weekly deaths statistics on 23 December to avoid publication of the statistics on Christmas EveUntil December 2021Letter from Ed Humpherson
Office for National StatisticsMarket sensitive economic statisticsPublish market sensitive statistics at 7 am rather than 9.30 am in the absence of media lock-insUntil 5 May 2022Letter and reply
Welsh GovernmentKey economic statisticsPublish market sensitive statistics at 7 am rather than 9.30 am to coordinate with ONS releasesUntil 5 May 2022Letter and reply
Scottish GovernmentKey economic statisticsPublish market sensitive statistics at 7 am rather than 9.30 am to coordinate with ONS releasesUntil 5 May 2022Letter and reply
Northern Ireland Statistics and Research AgencyMarket sensitive economic statisticsPublish market sensitive statistics at 7 am rather than 9.30 am to coordinate with ONS releasesUntil 5 May 2022Letter and reply
HM TreasuryUK Official Holdings of International ReservesPublish market sensitive statistics at 7 am rather than 9.30 am to coordinate with ONS releasesUntil July 2021Letter from Ed Humpherson
National Records of ScotlandWeekly death statisticsPublish statistics at noon rather than 9.30 am to allow for quality assuranceUntil 5 May 2022Letter from Ed Humpherson
Public Health ScotlandWeekly COVID-19 reportPublish at noon rather than 9.30 am in line with other related statisticsUntil 5 May 2022Letter from Scott Heald
Reply from Ed Humpherson

Reply from Scott Heald

Welsh GovernmentChildren and staff attendance at local authority settings in Wales during the COVID-19 pandemicPublish statistics at noon rather than 9.30 amUntil 5 May 2022Letter from Ed Humpherson
Department of Health, Northern IrelandDaily COVID-19 statistics dashboardPublish at 2 pm rather than 9.30 amUntil 5 May 2022Letter from Dr Eugene Mooney
Letter from Ed Humpherson
Department for EducationAttendance at education and childcare setting during coronavirus outbreakPublish statistics at noon rather than 9.30 am to allow for quality assuranceUntil 5 May 2022Letter from Ed Humpherson
Office for National StatisticsCoronavirus (Covid-19) Infection Survey statisticsPublish at 12 noon rather than 9.30 amUntil 5 May 2022Letter from Ed Humpherson
Office for National StatisticsCOVID-19 Infection SurveyPublish statistics at 11 am on 31 July 2020 instead of 12 pmOnce on 31 July 2020Letter and reply
Welsh GovernmentCOVID-19 Infection Survey ResultsPublish at noon rather than 9.30 amUntil 5 May 2022Letter from Ed Humpherson
Department of Health NICOVID-19 Infection Survey ResultsPublish at noon rather than 9.30 amUntil 5 May 2022Letter from Ed Humpherson
Office for National StatisticsCOVID-19 Infection Survey ResultsPublish statistics at 10:30 am on Thursday 26 November instead of noon on Friday 27 NovemberOnce on Thursday 26 NovemberLetter from Ed Humpherson
Office for National StatisticsCoronavirus (COVID-19) weekly insights: Key health indicators in EnglandPublish statistics at noon on a Friday instead of 9.30 amUntil 5 May 2022Letter from Ed Humpherson
Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA)Weekly deaths statisticsPublish statistics at 4 pm instead of 9.30 am, and publish on Wednesday 23 December instead of Friday 25 DecemberOnce on Wednesday 23 DecemberLetter from Ed Humpherson
UK Health Security AgencySeasonal flu and COVID vaccine uptake statisticsPublish at 2 pm to allow adequate time for quality assurance and at same time as other related statisticsUntil 5 May 2022Letter from Ed Humpherson