Category Archives: About FOIA

FOIA and NARA’s Federal Records Centers

We sometimes hear from FOIA requesters and agency personnel who are confused about why a FOIA request for records at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) is not processed by NARA. The answer has to do with whether the … Continue reading

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Tips for Avoiding FOIA Lawsuits

Last week our mediation team facilitator, Christa Lemelin, gave a five minute lightning talk at the Department of Commerce Sunshine Week celebration about common mistakes agencies make that could increase the likelihood of a FOIA requester filing a lawsuit against … Continue reading

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OGIS Releases FOIA Compliance Self-Assessment Survey Results

We are excited to announce the release of our analysis and observations of FOIA compliance issues based on the responses to FOIA questions included in the 2016 Records Management Self-Assessment (RMSA). The RMSA is a sophisticated agency self-assessment program developed … Continue reading

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DOJ Releases FOIA Website Guidance 2.0

The Department of Justice Office of Information Policy (OIP) recently issued updated guidance for agency FOIA webpages. The guidance provides helpful recommendations for agencies to ensure that requesters can find useful resources and information. OIP’s guidance suggests that agencies ensure … Continue reading

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OGIS Joins in Thanksgiving 2017

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we want to take some time to give thanks for the many individuals who have worked with us over the past year to help improve the FOIA process. In particular, we want to recognize the … Continue reading

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Useful Resources for Veterans Records

We often receive requests for assistance to obtain access to veterans’ medical and service records of those men and women who have served our country in the armed forces.  These requests come from the veterans themselves, from their family members, … Continue reading

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National Archives Releases New JFK Records

Last week there was a surge of excitement surrounding the National Archives’ release of new government records concerning the assassination of President John F. Kennedy (JFK). We thought this might be a good opportunity to join our colleagues in celebrating … Continue reading

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Understanding FOIA Delay

One of the frustrations with the FOIA process that we hear about most frequently is the delay in an agency’s response to a request. Frequently, requesters contact us to ask why an agency has not responded within the 20 working … Continue reading

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Teach the Children Well

As pictures of adorable kids returning from summer vacation and starting their first day of school begin to flood our social media feeds, we thought this might be a good moment to remind you all about the National Archives’ fantastic educational … Continue reading

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Reflections on the July 27 Chief FOIA Officer Council Meeting

Those who follow the news on FOIA are likely already aware of last week’s Chief FOIA Officers Council meeting hosted by NARA in McGowan Theater. The meeting included a panel discussion of ways that agencies, OGIS and FOIA requesters can … Continue reading

Posted in About FOIA, Alternative dispute resolution, Best practices, Customer service, FOIA Public Liaisons, OGIS events | 1 Comment