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Tips for submitting a right of petition

How can I make a right of petition, to whom or to which entities can I make a right of petition? All the answers in this article.
Article 23 of the Colombian Constitution states that any person has the right to submit respectful petitions for reasons of general or particular interest and to obtain a prompt, complete and substantive response.
This right is also regulated by Law 1755 of 2015. However, this does not mean that any person may request any type of information or documentation from any public or private entity, other principles and constitutional rights such as privacy and/or confidentiality must be taken into account. For this reason, the following recommendations should be taken into account when submitting a right of petition

To whom can I submit a right of petition?

The right of petition may be submitted to both natural and legal persons, public and private, and these are under the obligation to deliver within the deadlines stipulated by law a complete and substantive response that meets the needs of the requester.

What should the right of petition contain?

The right of petition must contain at least the entity to which it is addressed, the full name of the petitioner and his representative, if any, the purpose of the petition, the reasons on which the petition is based, a list of the documents with which the petitioner intends to initiate the process (if necessary) and, finally, the signature of the petitioner.
As a recommendation, you can also add facts that generate a context and make it easier for the entity to understand the motives and reasons why the information or documentation is being requested, or even why a right that may be debatable is being demanded.

What happens if I file a right of petition with the wrong entity?

In case the right of petition is addressed to an entity that is not competent to give a complete and substantive response, the latter is obliged to forward the right of petition to the competent entity and inform the petitioner of this event. However, prior to submitting the document, it is recommended to check that what is to be requested is within the entity’s competence. Likewise, in general, public and some private entities have citizen service centers where these concerns can be addressed.

What happens if my right of petition is not answered?

Since this is a fundamental right, it is protected by the tutela action, that is to say, in the event that the citizen is not given a full and complete response to his request within the established deadlines, he may file a tutela action before the competent judge, so that the judge, through his coercive power, may order the respondent to provide a full and complete response within the following 48 working hours.
What can I ask for in a right of petition?
Fundamentally, three (3) very general types of things can be requested. The first would be to request specific documentation or information on a particular or general subject, for which the requested entity will have a term of ten (10) business days for its response. Consultations may also be submitted, in which case the entities would be obliged to issue a concept on the subject consulted, for which they will have thirty (30) working days for their response.
It is worth clarifying that these concepts have no binding force and are merely normative interpretations. Finally, it is possible to request the recognition of a right and/or its requirement, for which the requested entity will have fifteen (15) business days to respond. In the event that the entity is unable to respond within these terms, it must inform the requester before the time to respond expires and indicate the date on which it will provide the response. This extension may never exceed thirty (30) working days.
Remember that our law firm in Medellin and Bogota Cuadro Legal, we have lawyers who are experts in constitutional law.
Written by:  Pedro Henao

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