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Case TitleLewis v. Department of the Treasury et al
DistrictDistrict of Maryland
CityGreenbelt
Case Number8:2020cv00494
Date Filed2020-02-25
Date ClosedOpen
JudgeJudge Theodore D. Chuang
PlaintiffKiesha Danielle Lewis
Case DescriptionKiesha Lewis submitted a FOIA request to the IRS for records. After the agency failed to respond, Lewis filed suit.
Complaint issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation - Recovery of Costs

DefendantDepartment of the Treasury
DefendantInternal Revenue Service
DefendantBureau of The Fiscal Service
DefendantBureau of The Fiscal Service
TERMINATED: 09/21/2021
DefendantTreasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station
DefendantBureau of Engraving and Printing
DefendantU.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
Documents
Docket
Complaint
Complaint attachment 1
Complaint attachment 2
Opinion/Order [24]
FOIA Project Annotation: A federal court in Maryland has ruled that the Department of Treasury and the Department of Veterans Affairs properly responded to multiple FOIAPA requests from pro se litigant Kiesha Lewis, a former employee of the IRS, covering a range of claims under both FOIA and the Privacy Act. The agencies argued that most of the complaints should be dismissed because Lewis had failed to exhaust her administrative remedies. The court found three instances in which Lewis had filed appeals but dismissed many of the others, noting that Lewis claimed the agencies failed to respond on time or provided unsatisfactory responses. The court pointed out that "such lengthy delays and unsatisfactory responses do not excuse the failure to exhaust. . .Once the agencies provided responses, even if unsatisfactory, Lewis was required to filed administrative appeals before filing suit." The court found the VA had failed to show that either Exemption 5 (privileges) or Exemption 6 (invasion of privacy) applied to documents pertaining to hiring. As to the Exemption 5 claim, the court noted that "where the VA has described the document in question as a memorandum relating to the appointment of the members of the Executive Resources Board for a particular hiring decision, it is unclear whether it contains similar material or whether it simply lists the appointed individuals, the dates of their meetings, or other such information. The VA has not provided legal authority establishing that Exemption 5 protects such non-consultative information from disclosure."
Issues: Search - Reasonableness of search
Opinion/Order [45]
User-contributed Documents
 
Docket Events (Hide)
Date FiledDoc #Docket Text

2020-02-251COMPLAINT against Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Bureau of The Fiscal Service, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs ( Filing fee $ 400 receipt number 84637035964.), filed by Kiesha Danielle Lewis. (Attachments: # 1 Civil Cover Sheet, # 2 Summons)(heps, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 02/26/2020)
2020-03-022Consent to receive notice and service electronically by Kiesha Danielle Lewis. The Court recommends that all documents received electronically be printed or saved for future reference. (Attachments: # 1 Envelope)(heps, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 03/02/2020)
2020-05-183ORDER that the plaintiff shall submit completed summons forms to the Clerk within 21 days from the date of this Order; upon receiving the corrected summons forms the Clerk shall issue summons and return summons to plaintiff. Signed by Magistrate Judge Gina L Simms on 5/18/2020. (heps, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 05/18/2020)
2020-06-164Summons Issued 60 days as to Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Bureau of The Fiscal Service, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, U.S. Attorney and U.S. Attorney General(c/m 6/16/2020 - dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 06/16/2020)
2020-06-165AFFIDAVIT of Service filed by Kiesha Danielle Lewis.(dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 06/16/2020)
2020-08-176MOTION for Extension of Time to File Answer re 1 Complaint, or to File an Otherwise Responsive Pleading by Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Bureau of The Fiscal Service, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Miller, Emily) (Entered: 08/17/2020)
2020-08-177MOTION for Extension of Time to File Answer re 1 Complaint, or to File an Otherwise Responsive Pleading by U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Koch, Rebecca) (Entered: 08/17/2020)
2020-08-178NOTICE by U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs concerning Related Cases (Koch, Rebecca) (Entered: 08/17/2020)
2020-08-179NOTICE of Case Assignment. This case has been assigned to Magistrate Judge Gina L. Simms. Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Bureau of The Fiscal Service, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Kiesha Danielle Lewis, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs or counsel for Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Bureau of The Fiscal Service, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Kiesha Danielle Lewis, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs are required to review and comply with the Magistrate Judge Pilot Project Procedures which can be downloaded here . Pursuant to Standing Order 2019-07, which can be downloaded here , counsel has 14 days from the date of this notice to file their consent, or decline to consent to proceed before a U.S. Magistrate Judge which can be downloaded here . To file your consent, go to Civil > Other Filings > Other Documents > 25 Pct Mag - Consent to Proceed Before a Magistrate Judge . To file your declination, go to Civil > Other Filings > Other Documents > 25 Pct Mag - Decline to Proceed Before a Magistrate Judge . Failure to file a consent or declination will result in issuance of an Order to Show Cause. Please review the case management order that has been issued in this case. Magistrate Election Form due by 8/31/2020. (dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 08/17/2020)
2020-08-1710Case Management Order. Signed by Magistrate Judge Gina L Simms on 8/17/2020. (dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 08/17/2020)
2020-08-31Case Reassigned to Judge Peter J. Messitte. Magistrate Judge Gina L Simms no longer assigned to the case. (kns, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 08/31/2020)
2020-09-0113ORDER granting 6 Motion for Extension of Time to Answer; granting 7 Motion for Extension of Time to Answer; Answer or responsive pleading shall be filed on or before 10/16/2020. Signed by Judge Peter J. Messitte on 9/1/2020. (c/m 9/2/2020 - dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 09/02/2020)
2020-09-23Case Reassigned to Judge Theodore D. Chuang. Judge Peter J. Messitte no longer assigned to the case. (kns, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 09/23/2020)
2020-09-2514CASE MANAGEMENT ORDER. Signed by Judge Theodore D. Chuang on 9/25/2020. (dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 09/25/2020)
2020-10-1615Request for Pre-Motion Conference re 1 Complaint, on behalf of the Department of the Treasury, the Internal Revenue Service, the Bureau of the Fiscal Service, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, and the Bureau of Engraving and Printing (Miller, Emily) (Entered: 10/16/2020)
2020-10-1616Request for Pre-Motion Conference re 1 Complaint, (Koch, Rebecca) (Entered: 10/16/2020)
2021-02-2217Notice scheduling a Pre-Motion Conference for March 8, 2021 at 3:00PM. Signed by Judge Theodore D. Chuang on 2/22/2021. (en/cm 2/22/2021 - jf3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 02/22/2021)
2021-03-0818Case Management Conference held on 3/8/2021 before Judge Theodore D. Chuang.(Court Reporter: FTR Recording/2C) (ds2s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 03/08/2021)
2021-03-0819ORDER granting leave to file a Motion to Dismiss, due by 3/29/2021 and setting a briefing schedule. Signed by Judge Theodore D. Chuang on 3/8/2021. (c/m 3/8/2021 - dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 03/08/2021)
2021-03-2920MOTION to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim , and for insufficient service of process, by Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Bureau of The Fiscal Service, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (Attachments: # 1 Memorandum in Support, # 2 Exhibit Index, # 3 Exhibit 1, # 4 Exhibit 2, # 5 Exhibit 3, # 6 Exhibit 4, # 7 Exhibit 5)(Koch, Rebecca) (Entered: 03/29/2021)
2021-03-3021Rule 12/56 notice mailed to Kiesha Danielle Lewis (c/m 3/30/2021 - dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 03/30/2021)
2021-04-0822RESPONSE in Opposition re 20 MOTION to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim , and for insufficient service of process, filed by Kiesha Danielle Lewis. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit List, # 2 Exhibit 1, # 3 Exhibit 2, # 4 Exhibit 3, # 5 Exhibit 4, # 6 Exhibit 5, # 7 Exhibit 6, # 8 Exhibit 7, # 9 Exhibit 8, # 10 Exhibit 9, # 11 Exhibit 10, # 12 Exhibit 11, # 13 Exhibit 12, # 14 Exhibit 13, # 15 Exhibit 14, # 16 Exhibit 15, # 17 Exhibit 16, # 18 Exhibit 17, # 19 Exhibit 18, # 20 Exhibit 19, # 21 Exhibit 20, # 22 Envelope)(dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 04/08/2021)
2021-05-0323REPLY to Response to Motion re 20 MOTION to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim , and for insufficient service of process, filed by Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Bureau of The Fiscal Service, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.(Koch, Rebecca) (Entered: 05/03/2021)
2021-09-2124MEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by Judge Theodore D. Chuang on 9/21/2021. (c/m 9/21/2021 - dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 09/21/2021)
2021-09-2125ORDER granting in part and denying in part 20 MOTION to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim, and for insufficient service of process; dismissing Defendant Bureau of Fiscal Services from this action; granting Plaintiff leave to file an Amended Complaint by 10/12/2021. Signed by Judge Theodore D. Chuang on 9/21/2021. (c/m 9/21/2021 - dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 09/21/2021)
2021-09-2826NOTICE by Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station re 25 Order on Motion to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim, regarding waiver of service of amended complaint (Miller, Emily) (Entered: 09/28/2021)
2021-09-2927AMENDED COMPLAINT against Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, filed by Kiesha Danielle Lewis. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit List, # 2 Exhibit A-P, # 3 Attachment Original Complaint, # 4 Cover Letter)(dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 09/29/2021)
2021-10-0428Supplemental (Clean Version of Amended Complaint) to 27 Amended Complaint, filed by Kiesha Danielle Lewis (dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 10/04/2021)
2021-10-1329MOTION for Extension of Time to File Answer re 27 Amended Complaint, or otherwise Responsive Pleading by Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Koch, Rebecca) (Entered: 10/13/2021)
2021-10-1430ORDER granting 29 Motion for Extension of Time to Answer; directing the Defendants to file an answer or otherwise responsive pleading on or before November 12, 2021. Signed by Judge Theodore D. Chuang on 10/14/2021. (mg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 10/14/2021)
2021-11-1231Request for Pre-Motion Conference re 27 Amended Complaint, (Koch, Rebecca) (Entered: 11/12/2021)
2021-11-1932PAPERLESS NOTICE. A CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE is scheduled for December 1, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. to discuss 31 NOTICE OF INTENT TO FILE A MOTION TO DISMISS OR A MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT. To join the call at the scheduled time: (1) Dial 1-888-557-8511. (2) Enter access code 3008173, followed by the # key. You will then be placed on hold until Chambers dials into the call, at which point you will be prompted to enter a security code. (3) When prompted, enter security code 12011000 followed by the # key. The call will be recorded, so please do not use speakerphones as they compromise sound quality. Also, we ask that parties not remain on the conference line after the Judge has left the call, to ensure that the line is free for other calls that may be on the Judge's calendar. The parties should also be prepared to address whether they consent to have all further proceedings before a Magistrate Judge and whether they wish to participate in a mediation session with a Magistrate Judge, whether before, during, or after discovery. Parties are expected to consult with their clients and confer with each other on these issues in advance of the Case Management Conference and, if possible, present joint views to the Court. (ds2s, Deputy Clerk)(c/m 11/19/2021) Modified on 11/19/2021 (dg3s, Deputy Clerk). (Entered: 11/19/2021)
2021-11-2933NOTICE of Change of E-mail Address by Kiesha Danielle Lewis (Attachments: # 1 Envelope)(dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 11/29/2021)
2021-11-2934SUMMONS Returned Executed by Kiesha Danielle Lewis. (dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 11/29/2021)
2021-12-0135Case Management Conference held on 12/1/2021 before Judge Theodore D. Chuang (FTR 2B) (dhs, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 12/01/2021)
2021-12-0236ORDER directing parties to meet and confer regarding the outstanding Privacy Act and Freedom of Information Act claims and file a Joint Status Report by 12/8/2021. Signed by Judge Theodore D. Chuang on 12/2/2021. (c/m 12/2/2021 - dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 12/02/2021)
2021-12-0837STATUS REPORT with Proposed Briefing Schedule by Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station, STIPULATION of Dismissal as to Certain Counts Only by Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station(Miller, Emily) (Entered: 12/08/2021)
2021-12-1538ORDER directing Plaintiff to file a Motion for Leave to File an Amended Complaint, should she choose, by 12/22/2021; granting Defendants leave to file a Motion to Dismiss by 1/18/2022 and setting a briefing schedule. Signed by Judge Theodore D. Chuang on 12/15/2021. (c/m 12/15/2021 - dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 12/15/2021)
2021-12-1639RETURN PLEADING ORDER. Signed by Judge Theodore D. Chuang on 12/16/2021. (Attachments: # 1 First Page of Returned Document)(c/m 12/16/2021 - dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 12/16/2021)
2022-01-1840MOTION to Dismiss , or in the alternative, for Summary Judgment by U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (Attachments: # 1 Memorandum in Support, # 2 Text of Proposed Order, # 3 Exhibit Index, # 4 Exhibit 1, # 5 Exhibit 2, # 6 Exhibit 3, # 7 Exhibit 4, # 8 Exhibit 5, # 9 Exhibit 6)(Koch, Rebecca) (Entered: 01/18/2022)
2022-01-1942Rule 12/56 notice mailed to Kiesha Danielle Lewis (c/m 1/19/2022 - dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 01/19/2022)
2022-01-2443RESPONSE in Opposition re 40 MOTION to Dismiss , or in the alternative, for Summary Judgment filed by Kiesha Danielle Lewis. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit, # 2 Exhibit, # 3 Exhibit, # 4 Exhibit, # 5 Exhibit, # 6 Exhibit, # 7 Exhibit, # 8 Exhibit, # 9 Exhibit, # 10 Exhibit, # 11 Exhibit, # 12 Exhibit, # 13 Exhibit, # 14 Exhibit)(dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 01/24/2022)
2022-02-1544REPLY to Response to Motion re 40 MOTION to Dismiss , or in the alternative, for Summary Judgment filed by Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.(Koch, Rebecca) (Entered: 02/15/2022)
2022-07-2145MEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by Judge Theodore D. Chuang on 7/21/2022. (dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 07/22/2022)
2022-07-2146ORDER granting in part and denying in part 40 MOTION to Dismiss, or in the alternative, for Summary Judgment; the motion granting as to Counts 3, 5, 8, 9, 11, and 12; directing the Defendants to disclose certain information to the Plaintiff within 14 days; directing parties to file a Notice within 7 days of the disclosure of information, to show it has been disclosed and received. Signed by Judge Theodore D. Chuang on 7/21/2022. (dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 07/22/2022)
2022-08-0247MOTION for Other Relief Pursuant to Rule 60(b)(6) for relief from the Court's Order to Release Records by August 4 by Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Miller, Emily) (Entered: 08/02/2022)
2022-08-0348PAPERLESS NOTICE. A CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE is scheduled for August 3, 2022 at 2:30 p.m. to discuss 47 TIGTAS MOTION FOR RELIEF FROM ORDER PURSUANT TO RULE 60(b)(6) To join the call at the scheduled time: (1) Dial 1-888-557-8511. (2) Enter access code 3008173, followed by the # key. You will then be placed on hold until Chambers dials into the call, at which point you will be prompted to enter a security code. (3) When prompted, enter security code 08030230 followed by the # key. The call will be recorded, so please do not use speakerphones as they compromise sound quality. Also, we ask that parties not remain on the conference line after the Judge has left the call, to ensure that the line is free for other calls that may be on the Judge's calendar. (ds2s, Deputy Clerk) Modified to edit text on 8/3/2022 (ds2s, Deputy Clerk). (Entered: 08/03/2022)
2022-08-0349Case Management Conference held on 8/3/2022 before Judge Theodore D. Chuang.(Court Reporter: FTR Recording\2B) (ds2s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 08/03/2022)
2022-08-0350ORDER construing ECF 47 as a Motion to Stay the Deadline and a Notice of Intent to File a Motion for Reconsideration; granting 47 Motion to Stay the Deadline; granting Defendant TIGTA to file their Propose Motion by 8/10/2022 and setting a briefing schedule for the Motion. Signed by Judge Theodore D. Chuang on 8/3/2022. (dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 08/04/2022)
2022-08-0351RESPONSE in Opposition re 47 MOTION for for Relief from Order Pursuant to Rule 60(b)(6) filed by Kiesha Danielle Lewis.(jf3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 08/05/2022)
2022-08-1052MOTION for Reconsideration re 46 Order on Motion to Dismiss, pursuant to Rule 60(b) by Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station (Attachments: # 1 Memorandum in Support, # 2 Text of Proposed Order)(Miller, Emily) (Entered: 08/10/2022)
2022-08-1053MOTION re 52 MOTION for Reconsideration re 46 Order on Motion to Dismiss, pursuant to Rule 60(b) to submit supplemental declarations in camera by Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station (Attachments: # 1 Memorandum in Support, # 2 Appendix, # 3 Text of Proposed Order)(Miller, Emily) (Entered: 08/10/2022)
2022-08-1054MOTION re 53 MOTION re 52 MOTION for Reconsideration re 46 Order on Motion to Dismiss, pursuant to Rule 60(b) to submit supplemental declarations in camera by Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station (Attachments: # 1 Declaration of Deputy Inspector General for Investigations Trevor Nelson, # 2 Declaration of Alexis Turner)(Miller, Emily) (Entered: 08/10/2022)
2022-08-1555RESPONSE in Opposition re 52 MOTION for Reconsideration re 46 Order on Motion to Dismiss, pursuant to Rule 60(b) filed by Kiesha Danielle Lewis.(dg3s, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 08/15/2022)
2022-08-1856REPLY to Response to Motion re 52 MOTION for Reconsideration re 46 Order on Motion to Dismiss, pursuant to Rule 60(b) filed by Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration Ben Franklin Station.(Miller, Emily) (Entered: 08/18/2022)
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