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January 2022 FOIA Litigation with Five-Year Monthly Trends

by FOIA Project Staff on February 14th, 2022

During the month of January 2022 federal district courts saw a total of 59 new Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuits filed under 5 U.S.C. 552. To place this number in perspective, 59 new filings compares with a monthly average of 55 filings during the last 12 months. This month’s total brought overall FOIA filings on an annual basis for these last 12 months to 662.

The figure below provides a more detailed view of monthly trends during the past five years. The height of each bar reflects the number of filings in that month. To see the actual filing count mouse over any bar. The superimposed line over the bars is the moving 12-month average. It is computed by adding up the 12 months ending at a given month, and then dividing that total by 12 to obtain the monthly average over this period. Mousing over any bar also shows the calculated result for this moving average for that given month.

Locating additional details on these cases: The FOIA Project compiles summaries of each of these cases written by Harry Hammitt for into a weekly blog posting. These typically are posted every Thursday. For recent postings see:

* January 21, 2022: JAMES MADISON PROJECT et al v. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE and 11 other new FOIA lawsuits, plus case descriptions.

* January 20, 2022: New Mexico Immigrant Law Center v. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and 15 other new FOIA lawsuits.

* January 7, 2022: Informed Consent Action Network v. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention et al and 9 other new FOIA lawsuits.

* January 7, 2022: AMERICAN IMMIGRATION COUNCIL v. U.S. CUSTOMS & BORDER PROTECTION et al and 7 other new FOIA lawsuits.

* January 4, 2022: The Center for Investigative Reporting et al v. Department of Justice et al and 11 other new FOIA lawsuits.

Documents in each case, including the complaint that was filed and the court’s docket sheet, are available elsewhere on They can be found by using the “Search Lawsuits” tool under the “FOIA Lawsuits” menu.

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