Freedom of Information Act
The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) provides that any person has the right to request access to federal agency records or information. Like all federal agencies, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), is required to disclose records requested in writing by any person. However, agencies may withhold information pursuant to nine exemptions and three exclusions contained in the statute. FOIA applies only to federal agencies and does not create a right of access to records held by Congress, the courts, or by state or local government agencies.
Under the statute, all federal agencies are required to respond to a FOIA request within 20 business days excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays. This period does not begin until the request is received by the FOIA office that maintains the records sought.
Please use the link(s) below to learn how to make a FOIA Request. We encourage the public to explore VETS’ and DOL’s websites or use our search option to see if the information you seek is already available on our website.
FOIA requests can be submitted to the VETS' appropriate national or regional office by mail, email, or fax. The request as well as the envelope itself should be clearly marked "Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Request" with as much information as possible describing the record(s) being sought.
You may submit a FOIA request by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. FOIA requests sent to any other DOL email addresses will not be accepted as a properly submitted request.
You may mail a FOIA request to VETS national office or a regional office. If you cannot determine the proper agency to which your FOIA request should be addressed, you may mail a direct request (with as much information as possible describing the records sought) to the:
Office of the Solicitor
Division of Management and Administrative Legal Services
200 Constitution Ave NW
Room N-2420 Washington, DC 20210
You may fax a FOIA request to "VETS FOIA Staff" at 202-693-4755 or "Solicitor FOIA Staff" at 202-693-5389.
VETS Service Center Contacts - FOIA requesters seeking information concerning their submitted FOIA request; or to obtain general information on our agency’s FOIA practices and resources may contact the VETS' national service center contact or their regional service center contact.
DOL FOIA Service Center Contacts - Within the Labor Department, each agency processes its own FOIA requests. Therefore, a request will receive the fastest possible response if it is addressed directly to the agency the requester believes has the records.
Once your FOIA request has been assigned a FOIA tracking number, you can also find out the status of your submitted FOIA requests using DOL's FOIA tracking system.
- VETS' FOIA National and Regional Contacts
- FOIA Definitions
- VETS FOIA Responsibilites [PDF]
- FOIA Fee Chart [PDF]
- FOIA Exemptions
- FOIA Mediation Services
- Frequently Asked Questions
The 2007 FOIA amendments created the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS) to offer mediation services to resolve disputes between FOIA requesters and Federal agencies as a non-exclusive alternative to litigation. Using OGIS services does not affect your right to pursue litigation. You may contact OGIS in any of the following ways:
8601 Adelphi Road - OGIS
College Park, MD 20740-6001
It is important to note that the services offered by OGIS, is not an alternative to filing an administrative FOIA appeal.
Questions concerning this guidance can be addressed to the DOL's FOIA Public Liaison, Mr. Thomas Hicks. He can be reached by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at 202-693-5427.
- Open Government Directive [PDF]
- Executive Order 13357- Streamlining Service Delivery and Improving Customer Service [PDF]
- Department of Labor (FOIA) Regulations, Effective January 23, 2017
- Discretionary Disclosures - DOL Revised Guidance (Memo) [PDF]
- VETS' Director's Memorandum No. 05-06 -USERRA/PA Case File Retention and Disposal Procedures [PDF]
- National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) - General Records Schedule 14 [PDF]
- Department of Justice (DOJ) OIP Guidance on Three Statutory Exclusions
- Department of Justice (DOJ) OIP Guide and FOIA Resources
- DOL FOIA Page
- The Freedom of Information Act - Including Electronic Freedom of Information Act Amendments, 1996 [PDF]
- Executive Order 13392 - Improving Agency Disclosure of Information
- Executive Order 12600 - Pre-disclosure Notification Procedures for Confidential Commercial Information
- The Privacy Act of 1974; 5 U.S.C. Sec. 552a (As Amended)
- FOIA Tolling - New Limitations on Tolling the FOIA'S Response Time
- VETS FOIA Reports
- DOL FOIA Reports
- VETS Privacy Act Systems
- DOL Privacy Act Systems
- Chief FOIA Officer
- FOIA Public Liaison
- Office of Information Services
- Agency Components and Disclosure Officers
- Requester Service Centers
Last updated: January 31, 2019