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Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA)
Requester Service Center


Question: Who should I contact to find out about the status of my request?

Answer: Requesters may have questions or want a status of their request. For all questions about a pending request and its status please contact our FOIA Public Liaison, at (301) 443-1116.

Question: How will I know when I should file an appeal? When I’m ready, how do I do that?

Answer: You may file an appeal for several reasons. One reason may be that you feel as though the Agency has taken too long to fulfill your request. Another reason may be that the requested information was released to you; but you are appealing any partial denial of information that you still want and deem to be releasable. The IHS FOIA Office responds to each FOIA request with a formal letter which outlines any exemptions that may have been applied and also your appeal rights. If you have not been responded to officially (other than an interim letter), then you may send your appeals to:

Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Room 17A-46, 5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville, Maryland, 20857. Your appeal must follow the procedures outlined in Subpart C of the enclosed Regulations. Indicate on your envelope and letter “FOIA Appeal.”

Question: Is there a fee for fulfilling my request?

Answer: Sometimes, yes. FOIA requestors may have to pay fees covering some or all of the costs of processing their request. Requestors may want to include the maximum dollar amount they are willing to pay. If the fees exceed the maximum amount stated, IHS will contact the requestor before filling the request. Requestors are generally billed for fees after their requests have been processed; however, if total fees are expected to exceed $250.00 IHS may require payment in advance of processing. Possible FOIA Fees [DOC-396KB]

Non-commercial Use Requestors, Such as Representatives of the News Media, Public Interest Groups, and Educational and Noncommercial Scientific Institutions:

  • Duplication charges at the same rates listed above with no charge for first 100 pages of duplication.

Other Requestors, Including Consumers:

  • Search, review, and duplication charges at rates listed above with no charge for the first two hours of search, review, and the first 100 pages of duplication.

Question: Should I send payment with my FOIA request?

Answer: Requesters should not send payment with their requests. They will be billed if the total processing charges are $25 or more. IHS does not accept credit cards. If the Agency charges you for fees, we will provide a detailed invoice of any and all charges at the time of final response.