Quick Answer: What Are The 9 Exemptions To A FOIA Request?

What happens if you break the Freedom of Information Act 2000?

You may be breaching the Freedom of Information Act if you do any of the following: fail to respond adequately to a request for information; fail to adopt the model publication scheme, or do not publish the correct information; or.

deliberately destroy, hide or alter requested information to prevent it being released..

How many exemptions are there to the federal Freedom of Information Act?

nine exemptionsThe nine exemptions are described below. Exemption 1: Information that is classified to protect national security. Exemption 2: Information related solely to the internal personnel rules and practices of an agency. Exemption 3: Information that is prohibited from disclosure by another federal law.

Who can file a FOIA?

The FOIA is codified at 5 U.S.C. Section 552. “Any person” can file a FOIA request, including U.S. citizens, foreign nationals, organizations, associations, and universities. In 1974, after the Watergate scandal, the Act was amended to force greater agency compliance.

Are FOIA requests themselves public record?

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests are not confidential. Once a FOIA request is received, it becomes a public record of the USGS. … The FOIA is designed to inform the public about agency actions, not to benefit individual litigants.

How long does it take to get FOIA?

Processing times for Form G-639 and other USCIS FOIA requests can vary significantly based on the nature of the request. Simple requests for specific documents may only take 4 to 12 weeks. However, more complex requests and requests for entire immigration files can take approximately 6 months.

How long does a government agency have to respond to a FOIA request?

within 20 business daysUnder the law, all federal agencies are required to respond to a FOIA request within 20 business days, unless there are “unusual circumstances.” This time period generally begins when the request is received by the FOIA office of the Department of Justice component that maintains the records sought.

What happens if a FOIA request is ignored?

Filing a Lawsuit If your request is denied, and your internal appeal does not reverse this decision, you may sue the agency in the United State District Court in your state of residence, in the state where the records are located, or in the District of Columbia.

When can a FOIA be denied?

When information is withheld, whether partially or fully, this constitutes a denial under FOIA. If your request is partially denied, you will receive a document in which the information that is exempted from disclosure has been redacted. A request may be denied for one or more of the aforementioned exemptions.

Can anyone make a FOIA request?

The Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) gives the right to request access to government records to any person for any reason, whether the person is a U.S. citizen or a foreign national. Requests can be made in the name of an individual or an organization (including a corporation, partnership, or public interest group).

What can I request under FOIA?

Under the Freedom of Information Act and the Environmental Information Regulations you have a right to request any recorded information held by a public authority, such as a government department, local council or state school.

How do I write a FOIA request?

If the information you want is not publicly available, you can submit a FOIA request to the agency’s FOIA Office. The request simply must be in writing and reasonably describe the records you seek. Most federal agencies now accept FOIA requests electronically, including by web form, e-mail or fax.

Can you FOIA police reports?

Under the federal Freedom of Information Act and public records laws in all 50 states, anyone can request information from federal, state and local agencies like the FBI, the Environmental Protection Agency or your local police department.

What are the nine main exemptions to FOIA?

FOIA ExemptionsExemption 1. Protects information that is properly classified in the interest of national security pursuant to Executive Order 12958.Exemption 2. Protects records related solely to the internal personnel rules and practices of an agency.Exemption 3. … Exemption 4. … Exemption 5. … Exemption 6. … Exemption 7. … Exemption 8.More items…•

How much does it cost to file a FOIA request?

Search and review fees can range from $8 to $45 per hour, and duplication fees are usually $0.10 to $0.35 per page. Most agencies’ regulations say that by filing a request, the requester is agreeing to pay some threshold for fees, usually $25.

How do I write a public record request?

ProceduresBegin by drafting a public records request. … Contact the public body from which you seek records. … Find the FOI liaison. … Review your request and submit your request following the FOI liaison’s instructions.Stay in communication with the FOI liaison.More items…