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CAUSE OF ACTION INSTITUTE v. U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE and 14 other new FOIA lawsuits

by Harry Hammitt on July 27th, 2017

We have added 102 documents from 14 FOIA cases filed between July 16, 2017 and July 22, 2017. Note that there can be delays between the date a case is filed and when it shows up on PACER. If there are filings from this period that have yet to be posted on PACER, this FOIA Project list may not be complete.

Click on a case title below to view details for that case, including links to the associated docket and complaint documents.

  1. CAUSE OF ACTION INSTITUTE v. U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE (filed Jul 18, 2017)
    Cause of Action Institute submitted a FOIA request to the Department of Justice for records concerning Rep. Jeb Hensarling’s directive for agencies to treat all records sent to his Committee on Financial Services as congressional records rather than agency records. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, Cause of Action Institute filed suit.
    Issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees
  2. Sustainable Modular Management Inc v. United States Department of the Navy, Navy Facilities Engineering Command (filed Jul 17, 2017)
    Sustainable Modular Management, Inc. submitted a FOIA request to the Department of the Navy Facilities Engineering Command for records concerning communications between the agency and CT JV, TolTest, Inc. or Custom Mechanical Systems regarding damages claimed by the Navy under a contract. After hearing nothing further from the agency, Sustainable Modular Management filed suit.
    Issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees
  3. Wright v. U.S. Department of Justice et al (filed Jul 18, 2017)
    Roderic Wright submitted FOIA requests to the Department of Justice and the IRS for records concerning the government’s prosecution of him on tax-related matters. The FBI uncovered more than 3,500 pages. The IRS found 110 responsive pages, but disclosed only five pages. After appealing various denials, Wright finally filed suit.
    Issues: Litigation – Attorney’s fees
  4. PUBLIC EMPLOYEES FOR ENVIRONMENTAL RESPONSIBILITY v. UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF THE BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT (filed Jul 18, 2017)
    Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility submitted a FOIA request to the Bureau of Land Management for records concerning the agency’s compliance efforts in response to a 2016 GAO report on unauthorized grazing. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, PEER filed suit.
    Issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees
  5. AMERICAN CENTER FOR LAW AND JUSTICE v. UNITED STATES NATIONAL SECURITY AGENCY (filed Jul 18, 2017)
    The American Center for Law and Justice submitted a FOIA request to the National Security Agency for records concerning requests by former National Security Advisor Susan Rice to unmask identifying information about Donald Trump, his family, or his campaign associates contained in electronic surveillance intercepts. ACLJ also requested expedited processing and a fee waiver. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request and granted expedited processing. However, after hearing nothing further from the agency, ACLJ filed suit.
    Issues: Adequacy – Search, Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Litigation – Vaughn index
  6. FEDERATION FOR AMERICAN IMMIGRATION REFORM v. U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (filed Jul 18, 2017)
    The Federation for American Immigration Reform submitted a FOIA request to the Privacy Office at the Department of Homeland Security for records concerning a July 3, 2014 meeting entitled CIR/Legal Authority. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, FAIR filed suit.
    Issues: Adequacy – Search, Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Litigation – Vaughn index
  7. HARDWAY et al v. CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY (filed Jul 19, 2017)
    Dan Hardaway, Edwin Lopez, G. Robert Blakey, and the Assassination Archives and Research Center submitted FOIA requests to the CIA for all records concerning themselves. The agency acknowledged receipt of the requests, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, Hardaway and the others filed suit.
    Issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees
  8. ELECTRONIC PRIVACY INFORMATION CENTER v. U.S. CUSTOMS AND BORDER PROTECTION (filed Jul 19, 2017)
    The Electronic Privacy Information Center submitted three FOIA requests to U.S. Customs and Border Protection for records concerning various aspects of the agency’s biometric entry and exit program. EPIC also requested expedited processing and inclusion in the news media fee category. The agency acknowledged receipt of the requests, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, EPIC filed suit.
    Issues: Adequacy – Search, Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Public Interest Fee Waiver
  9. PROTECT DEMOCRACY PROJECT, INC. v. OFFICE OF MANAGEMENT AND BUDGET (filed Jul 20, 2017)
    The Protect Democracy Project submitted two FOIA requests to OMB for records concerning the Congressional Budget Office. The agency acknowledged receipt of both requests, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, the Protect Democracy Project filed suit.
    Issues: Adequacy – Search, Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Litigation – Vaughn index
  10. AMERICAN OVERSIGHT v. U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES et al (filed Jul 20, 2017)
    American Oversight submitted FOIA requests to the Department of Health and Human Services and OMB for records concerning a document sent by the Trump administration to Republican congressional members pertaining to regulatory actions the administration could take to affect the Affordable Care Act. American Oversight also requested expedited processing. The Department of Health and Human Services acknowledged receipt of the request, but OMB did not. After hearing nothing further from either agency, American Oversight filed suit.
    Issues: Adequacy – Search, Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees
  11. American Civil Liberties Union v. Department of Health & Human Services et al (filed Jul 20, 2017)
    The American Civil Liberties Union submitted FOIA requests to the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Justice, the Department of Labor, and the Department of the Treasury for records concerning new religious exemptions that would allow discrimination against LGBT individuals, women, religious minorities, people seeking reproductive healthcare, and children who receive services from federally-funded programs. The ACLU also requested a fee waiver. After hearing nothing further from any of the agencies, the ACLU filed suit.
    Issues: Adequacy – Search, Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees
  12. ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT LEGAL INSTITUTE v. UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (filed Jul 21, 2017)
    The Energy and Environmental Legal Institute submitted two FOIA requests to the National Institute of Health Sciences for specifically-identified records, primarily pertaining to contract proposals. The agency acknowledged receipt of the requests, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, EELI filed suit.
    Issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees
  13. VIZCARRA CALDERON v. U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE et al (filed Jul 22, 2017)
    Yolanda Vizcarra Calderon submitted FOIA requests to the Department of Justice, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of State, the Department of the Treasury, and the Department of Defense for records concerning herself. The agencies disclosed some records and withheld others. Vizcarra Calderson eventually filed suit against all the agencies.
    Issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Litigation – Discovery, Litigation – Vaughn index
  14. CASTANEDA SANCHEZ v. U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE et al (filed Jul 22, 2017)
    Ranfeil Castanada Sanchez submitted FOIA requests to the Department of Justice, Department of Homeland Security, Department of State, Department of the Treasury, and Department of Defense for records concerning himself. The agencies disclosed some records and withheld others. Castanada Sanchez eventually filed suit against all the agencies.
    Issues: Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Litigation – Discovery, Litigation – Vaughn index

In addition, we have added 1 document from 1 case, with an earlier filing date, that has recently appeared on PACER.

From → FOIA, PACER

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