Freedom of Information Act
The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. Section 552, is a statute that provides a process by which every person may request access to federal agency records or information. Federal agencies, such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, are required to disclose records upon receiving a written request for them unless those records are protected from disclosure by any of the nine exemptions and three exclusions of the FOIA. The FOIA applies only to federal agencies and the records in its custody. The FOIA does not create an access to records held by Congress, the courts or by state and local governments. Any requests for state or local government records should be directed to the appropriate state or local government agency.
On this page, you will find:
You may find the Reference guide to be of particular interest because it provides such basic information as:
- where and how to make a FOIA request
- the time for response
- fees and fee waivers
- responses to initial requests and
- how and where to file an appeal of a determination made on a FOIA request.
Privacy Act Overview
The Privacy Act, 5 U.S.C. Section 552a, passed by Congress in 1974, establishes certain controls over what personal information is collected by the federal government and how it is used. The act guarantees three primary rights: (1) the right to see records about oneself, subject to the Privacy Act's exemptions; (2) the right to amend that record if it is inaccurate, irrelevant, untimely or incomplete; and (3) the right to sue the government for violations of the statute, including permitting others to see your records, unless specifically permitted by the act.
Freedom Of Information Act Reference Guide
(Issued July, 1998 by the Office of Legal Counsel)
II. Access to Certain Records Without a FOIA Request
III. Where to Make a FOIA Request
IV. How to Make a FOIA Request
V. Time for Response
VI. Expedited Processing
VIII. Fee Waivers
IX. Initial Request Determination
XI. Judicial Review
Katherine Bissell, Esq.
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
New York District Office
33 Whitehall Street
New York, New York 10004-2112