Under certain conditions you may be entitled to have your request processed on an expedited basis. At the Department of Justice, there are four specific situations where a request will be expedited, which means that it is handled as soon as practicable.
First, a request will be expedited if the lack of expedited treatment could reasonably be expected to pose a threat to someone's life or physical safety.
Second, a request will be expedited if the information requested is urgently needed to inform the public concerning some actual or alleged federal government activity, and if it is made by a person primarily engaged in disseminating information to the public.
Third, if an individual will suffer the loss of substantial due process rights, his or her request will be expedited. A request will not normally be expedited merely because the requester is facing a court deadline in a judicial proceeding.
Finally, a request will be expedited if the subject of the request is of widespread and exceptional media interest and the information sought involves possible questions about the government's integrity which affect public confidence. Decisions to expedite under this fourth standard are made by DOJ's Director of Public Affairs.
If you believe that your request might qualify for expedited processing under one of these four standards, you must specifically ask the component for expedited handling of your request. When you do, you should provide a certified statement explaining why you believe that your request qualifies under one of the four standards.