FOIA Advisor

FOIA News: Oral arguments held on OLC 's legal opinions

Allan BlutsteinComment

DOJ Says FOIA Suit For Legal Advice Is Too Broad

By Bryan Koenig, Law360, July 18, 2017

The U.S. Department of Justice urged a D.C. federal judge in oral arguments Tuesday to dismiss as too expansive and unspecified a suit accusing the Office of Legal Counsel of treating its advice as broadly exempt from the Freedom of Information Act.

The Campaign for Accountability lawsuit seeking a check for all “controlling legal advice” fails, DOJ attorney Daniel Schwei said, in part because it doesn’t specify particular OLC opinions that have been improperly withheld, and the opinions should generally be treated as policy advice that merely informs government decisions, rather than directs it in working law that must be made public.

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