FOIA Advisor

Court opinion issued Dec. 2, 2015

Court Opinions (2015-16)Allan BlutsteinComment

Gahagan v. U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Servs. (E.D. La.) -- granting in part and denying in part agency's motion for summary judgment concerning request for an immigration file and related correspondence from agency field office. First, the court held that the agency's declarant was not required to have personally participated in the search for responsive records in order to have requisite personal knowledge of the search.  Second, the court held that the agency conducted an adequate search and that it was not required to explain why it did not search search in certain locations.  Third, the court found that USCIS had not discharged its FOIA obligations because four pages that it referred to the U.S. Department of State had not yet been processed.  Lastly, the court ordered USCIS to submit a new Vaughn Index to address various deficiencies, including withholdings under Exemption 5 and segregability.          

Summaries of all opinions issued since April 2015 available here.