FOIA Advisor

Court opinions issued Nov. 17, 2015

Court Opinions (2015-16)Allan BlutsteinComment

Kohake v. Dep't of the Treasury (6th Cir.) -- affirming lower court's decision that Internal Revenue Service conducted a reasonable search for records concerning the Estate of William Meadors, which allegedly holds vast fortunes to which plaintiff claims she is entitled.  In reaching its decision, the Sixth Circuit held that the IRS was not required to search for certain records maintained by a U.S. Attorney's Office or county courthouse.    

Am. Civil Liberties Union of N. Cal. v. Fed. Bureau of Investigation (N.D. Cal.) -- finding that FBI failed to show that the attorney-client privilege justified the agency's redactions of 'Human Source Advisory Notices" or the complete withholding of "FAQs for Threat Assessments."  The court further found that FBI improperly relied on the deliberative process privilege to withhold a red-lined version of a "training FAQ," stating that FBI had not demonstrated that "advice about whether a comma should be inserted, word choice, or phrasing would discourage members of the Bureau from providing candid advice about the pros and cons of adopting a policy or practice."

Summaries of all opinions issued since April 2015 available here.