FOIA Advisor

Q&A: The Real Thing?

Q&A (2015-16)Allan BlutsteinComment

Q.  I requested and received some financial information from the VA involving the dollar amount of transaction fees paid to our company, per year, under specific identified contracts.  You would think we had that information, but payment is collected and distributed by a third party and our accounting was managed by an outside source.  We believe that our vendor under-reported the collection of fees and diverted those.  Accordingly, we went to the agency and through a FOIA request asked for a summary by year of fees paid. Those fees turned out to exceed those reported by our vendor.  For purposes of litigation, how do I authenticate the validity of the data?

A.  The Department of Veterans Affairs can attest under seal or certify that the records are true copies.  The agency will charge a fee for this service.  For details, contact the FOIA office that processed your request.