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Case TitleReclaim the Records et al v. United States Department of Veterans Affairs
DistrictSouthern District of New York
CityFoley Square
Case Number1:2018cv08449
Date Filed2018-09-17
Date ClosedOpen
JudgeJudge Paul A. Engelmayer
PlaintiffReclaim the Records
PlaintiffBrooke Schreier Ganz
Case DescriptionReclaim the Records and Brooke Schreiber Ganz submitted a FOIA request to the Department of Veterans Affairs for records concerning the BIRLS Death File, which Ganz told the agency had previously been made public to two genealogy websites. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request but told Ganz that the current database could not be disclosed because of privacy concerns under Exemption 6 (invasion of privacy). Ganz filed an administrative appeal and the agency told her the database was actually maintained by the Veterans Health Administration. VHA denied her request, telling her that the previous disclosure of the database to Ancestry.com was erroneous and had led to data breaches of veterans' private information. Ganz filed an administrative appeal of the VHA denial, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, Reclaim the Records and Ganz filed suit.
Complaint issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation - Attorney's fees

DefendantUnited States Department of Veterans Affairs including its Components, the Office of General Counsel, the Veterans Benefits Administration, and the Veterans Health Administration
Documents
Docket
Complaint
User-contributed Documents
 
Docket Events (Hide)
Date FiledDoc #Docket Text

2018-09-171COMPLAINT against United States Department of Veterans Affairs. (Filing Fee $ 400.00, Receipt Number 0208-15579397)Document filed by Reclaim the Records, Brooke Schreier Ganz.(Rankin, David) (Entered: 09/17/2018)
2018-09-172AMENDED COMPLAINT amending 1 Complaint against United States Department of Veterans Affairs.Document filed by Reclaim the Records, Brooke Schreier Ganz. Related document: 1 Complaint. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit, # 2 Exhibit, # 3 Exhibit, # 4 Exhibit, # 5 Exhibit, # 6 Exhibit, # 7 Exhibit)(Rankin, David) (Entered: 09/17/2018)
2018-09-173FILING ERROR - PDF ERROR - CIVIL COVER SHEET filed. (Rankin, David) Modified on 9/18/2018 (pne). (Entered: 09/17/2018)
2018-09-174REQUEST FOR ISSUANCE OF SUMMONS as to United States Department of Veterans Affairs, re: 1 Complaint, 2 Amended Complaint,. Document filed by Reclaim the Records, Brooke Schreier Ganz. (Rankin, David) (Entered: 09/17/2018)
2018-09-18***NOTICE TO ATTORNEY REGARDING DEFICIENT CIVIL COVER SHEET. Notice to attorney David Bruce Rankin to RE-FILE Document No. 3 Civil Cover Sheet. The filing is deficient for the following reason: MULTIPLE NATURES OF SUIT SELECTED (440 & 895); PLEASE SELECT ONLY ONE. Re-file the document using the event type Civil Cover Sheet found under the event list Other Documents and attach the correct PDF. Use civil cover sheet issued by S.D.N.Y. dated June 2017. The S.D.N.Y. Civil Cover Sheet dated June 2017 is located at http://nysd.uscourts.gov/file/forms/civil-cover-sheet.. (pne) (Entered: 09/18/2018)
2018-09-18CASE OPENING INITIAL ASSIGNMENT NOTICE: The above-entitled action is assigned to Judge Paul A. Engelmayer. Please download and review the Individual Practices of the assigned District Judge, located at http://nysd.uscourts.gov/judges/District . Attorneys are responsible for providing courtesy copies to judges where their Individual Practices require such. Please download and review the ECF Rules and Instructions, located at http://nysd.uscourts.gov/ecf_filing.php . (pne) (Entered: 09/18/2018)
2018-09-18Magistrate Judge Robert W. Lehrburger is so designated. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. Section 636(c) and Fed. R. Civ. P. 73(b)(1) parties are notified that they may consent to proceed before a United States Magistrate Judge. Parties who wish to consent may access the necessary form at the following link: http://nysd.uscourts.gov/forms.php . (pne) (Entered: 09/18/2018)
2018-09-18Case Designated ECF. (pne) (Entered: 09/18/2018)
2018-09-18***NOTICE TO ATTORNEY REGARDING PARTY MODIFICATION. Notice to attorney David Bruce Rankin. The party information for the following party/parties has been modified: United States Department of Veterans Affairs. The information for the party/parties has been modified for the following reason/reasons: party text was omitted. (pne) (Entered: 09/18/2018)
2018-09-185CIVIL COVER SHEET filed. (Rankin, David) (Entered: 09/18/2018)
2018-09-186ELECTRONIC SUMMONS ISSUED as to United States Department of Veterans Affairs. (pne) (Entered: 09/18/2018)
2018-10-017SUMMONS RETURNED EXECUTED. United States Department of Veterans Affairs served on 9/25/2018, answer due 10/16/2018. Service was accepted by Daniel Kennedy, Paralegal. Document filed by Reclaim the Records; Brooke Schreier Ganz. (Rankin, David) (Entered: 10/01/2018)
2018-11-028SUMMONS RETURNED EXECUTED. United States Department of Veterans Affairs served on 11/1/2018, answer due 11/23/2018. Service was made by MAIL. Document filed by Reclaim the Records; Brooke Schreier Ganz. (Rankin, David) (Entered: 11/02/2018)
2018-11-059NOTICE OF INITIAL PRETRIAL CONFERENCE: Initial Conference set for 12/3/2018 at 04:00 PM in Courtroom 1305, 40 Centre Street, New York, NY 10007 before Judge Paul A. Engelmayer; and as further set forth herein. SO ORDERED. (Signed by Judge Paul A. Engelmayer on 11/5/2018) (anc) (Entered: 11/05/2018)
2018-11-1910NOTICE OF APPEARANCE by Sharanya Mohan on behalf of United States Department of Veterans Affairs. (Mohan, Sharanya) (Entered: 11/19/2018)
2018-11-1911CONSENT LETTER MOTION for Extension of Time to respond to the amended complaint and joint request to adjourn initial conference and pre-conference submission deadline addressed to Judge Paul A. Engelmayer from Sharanya Mohan dated November 19, 2018. Document filed by United States Department of Veterans Affairs.(Mohan, Sharanya) (Entered: 11/19/2018)
2018-11-2012ORDER granting 11 Letter Motion for Extension of Time: The Court grants this request. The IPTC is hereby adjourned until January 8, 2019 at 4:00 p.m. Pre-conference submission are due on January 4, 2019, including two courtesy copies of all pleadings. SO ORDERED. (Signed by Judge Paul A. Engelmayer on 11/20/2018) (ks) (Entered: 11/20/2018)
2018-11-20Set/Reset Hearings: Initial Conference set for 1/8/2019 at 04:00 PM before Judge Paul A. Engelmayer. (ks) (Entered: 11/20/2018)
2018-12-1713ANSWER to 2 Amended Complaint,. Document filed by United States Department of Veterans Affairs.(Mohan, Sharanya) (Entered: 12/17/2018)
2018-12-2414CONSENT LETTER MOTION to Adjourn Conference addressed to Judge Paul A. Engelmayer from Sharanya Mohan dated December 24, 2018. Document filed by United States Department of Veterans Affairs.(Mohan, Sharanya) (Entered: 12/24/2018)
2018-12-2615MEMO ENDORSED granting 14 Letter Motion to Adjourn Conference. ENDORSEMENT: Granted. The Court hereby adjourns the initial pre-trial conference until March 18, 2019 at 2:30 p.m. Pre-trial submissions are due on March 14, 2019. SO ORDERED. Initial Conference set for 3/18/2019 at 02:30 PM before Judge Paul A. Engelmayer. (Signed by Judge Paul A. Engelmayer on 12/26/2018) (kv) (Entered: 12/26/2018)
2018-12-2716STANDING ORDER M10-468: The United States Attorney's Office shall notify the Court immediately upon the restoration of Department of Justice funding. (As further set forth in this Order.) (Signed by Judge Colleen McMahon on 12/27/2018) (mro) (Entered: 01/02/2019)
2018-12-27Case Stayed (mro) (Entered: 01/14/2019)
2019-03-1417LETTER addressed to Judge Paul A. Engelmayer from Sharanya Mohan dated March 14, 2019 re: submission in advance of initial conference and request to adjourn initial conference. Document filed by United States Department of Veterans Affairs.(Mohan, Sharanya) (Entered: 03/14/2019)
2019-03-1418MEMO ENDORSEMENT on re: 17 Letter, filed by United States Department of Veterans Affairs. ENDORSEMENT: Granted. The Court hereby directs the parties to file a joint letter, setting out each party's views on which issues remain and proposing, if necessary, a summary judgement briefing schedule. This latter is due by Monday, May 6, 2019. The Court also adjourns the pretrial conference currently scheduled for March 18, 2019 to Monday May 20, 2019. SO ORDERED. (Signed by Judge Paul A. Engelmayer on 3/14/2019) (ks) (Entered: 03/14/2019)
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