DoD Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), known by its legal cite as 5 United States Code (U.S.C.) Section 552, along with Department of Defense (DoD) Publication 5400.7, can be found at Part 286 of Chapter 32 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), is a federal law that allows for the full or partial disclosure of previously unreleased information and documents controlled by the United States government. The Act defines agency records subject to disclosure, outlines mandatory disclosure procedures, and grants nine exemptions to the statute.
 

WHAT IS THE FOIA?

The FOIA allows the general public including foreign citizens, military and civilian personnel acting as private citizens, to request records electronically or in writing from the Federal Government. Some records are released to the public under the FOIA, and may therefore reflect deletion of some information in accordance with the FOIA's nine statutory exemptions or two law enforcement record exclusions. A consolidated list of such records is on the DoD and Air Force FOIA sites. Currently the law allows 20 working days to process a FOIA request upon receipt of the request in the FOIA office.
 

WHO CAN SUBMIT A REQUEST?

Members of the public, including foreign citizens, military and civilian personnel acting as private citizens, organizations and businesses, and individual members of the Congress for themselves or constituents, may request records in writing. It is important to remember that the Freedom of Information Act applies only to federal agencies. It does not create a right of access to records held by Congress, the courts, state or local government agencies, or by private businesses or individuals. Each state has its own public access laws that should be consulted for access to state and local records.
 

ESSENTIAL ELEMENTS OF A FOIA REQUEST

  • Cite that you are requesting records under the FOIA
  • Provide your full name and contact information, to include e-mail address to expedite communications
  • Provide a reasonable description of the record(s) requested as well as the office(s) you believe are most likely to have the records sought. A listing of the offices serviced by this requestor service center can be found here.
  • Provide a statement of your fee category and indicate your willingness to pay applicable fees for processing. You may include a dollar amount you are willing to pay up to, or you may leave the amount you are willing to pay open ended.
 

FEE CATEGORIES


Educational, Noncommercial, Scientific, and Media:
Any accredited U.S. educational or research institution or instructor of an institution, or representative of the news media using the information in a scholarly or analytical work contributing to public knowledge and disseminated to the public.

Commercial:
Increases the commercial interest of the requestor.

All Others:
All other requestors
 

FEES

The FOIA provides for the collection of fees for:
  • Searches: Time spent in looking for and retrieving material, either paper or electronic files, that are responsive to the request to include personnel hours (clerical and professional) and computer time.
  • Reviews: Time spent to determine if the record is releasable under legal guidelines, excluding resolution of legal or policy issues. This does include time spent excising text that is exempt under FOIA.
  • Reproduction: Generating a copy of a requested record in the appropriate medium, for example paper or computer file.
  • Fees rates and schedules can be found in DoD 5400.7, DoD Freedom of Information Act Program, and on the DD 2086, Record of FOI Costs.
 

OBTAINING MILITARY SERVICE OR EMPLOYMENT VERIFICATION

If you are seeking verification of military service for either the Air or Army National Guard to comply with the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, please visit https://scra.dmdc.osd.mil/scra/.

If you are seeking records on former civilian or military service members for either the Air or Army National https://www.archives.gov/st-louis and complete a Standard Form 180 and send to the appropriate address listed on page 3 of the form. These requests for records are not processed by our office.

If you are seeking verification of employment for either Air or Army National Guard Title 5 employees, please visit http://www.whs.mil/service/employment-verification or https://compo.dcpds.cpms.osd.mil/ for instructions your client must complete to allow for verification.

 

FOIA CONTACTS


ALASKA AIR NATIONAL GUARD (AKANG) RECORDS REQUESTS

The Air National Guard has centralized its FOIA program. We encourage requestors to make FOIA requests electronically through the AF FOIA Website.
 

ALASKA ARMY NATIONAL GUARD (AKARNG) RECORDS REQUESTS

JFHQ-DOIM ATTN: FOIA Manager
PO BOX 5800
Ft. Richardson, AK 99505
Phone: (907) 428-6845
Fax: (907) 428-6439
 

ADDITIONAL FOIA CONTACTS

You may also mail, e-mail, or fax your FOIA request for records to:

ATTN: NGB/JA/OIP
111 South George Mason Drive, AH2
Arlington, VA  22204-1373
E-mail: foia@ng.army.mil
Phone: (571)256-7838  or (703) 607-4901
Fax:       (703)-607-3684
(Office hours: 8am-5pm EST)

To inquire on the status of your request, you may contact the NGB FOIA Office at (844) 573-2939 or e-mail ngb.foia@mail.mil.

Please note that the filing of a FOIA or Privacy request is a personal matter. Military personnel and Federal Government Employees may not use government time or equipment to make such requests.

Any customers who have concerns about the service received from the NGB Requestor Service Center may contact the DoD FOIA Public Liaison:
Defense Freedom of Information Policy Office
Attn: Mr. James Hogan
1155 Defense Pentagon
Washington, D.C. 20301-1155
(571) 372-0462
OSD.FOIALiaison@mail.mil

More information can be found at https://www.nationalguard.mil/Resources/FOIA/

If you are seeking records about yourself under the Privacy Act that are filed within a Privacy Act System of Record, you should direct your request to appropriate Privacy Act System Manager. A listing of all Privacy Act System of Records Notices and contact information to write for access to records covered by the notices can be found on the DoD Privacy Office Website.

Most contracts within the National Guard are Army National Guard records and are held by the United States Property and Fiscal Officer within the state where the contract was initiated. If you have the contract number, you may use this chart to find the appropriate FOIA office to handle your request.

National Guard Bureau FOIA
NGB FOIA Office (NGB/JA-OIP)
111 South George Mason Drive, AH2
Arlington, VA 22204-1373
ngb.foia@mail.mil