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Key FOIA Resources: Exemption 3 Statutes

The Office of Information Policy (OIP) continues to update resources to assist agencies in applying Exemption 3 of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).  Exemption 3 of the FOIA provides for the withholding of records when disclosure is prohibited by another federal law.  OIP makes available multiple resources on its FOIA Resources page to assist agencies in processing FOIA requests that may involve records covered by an Exemption 3 statute and in reporting Exemption 3 statute usage in their Annual FOIA Reports.  These resources also provide the public greater insight into Exemption 3 statute usage across the federal government.   

OIP's now updated list of Statutes Found to Qualify Under Exemption 3 of the FOIA contains federal statutes that federal courts have affirmatively found to qualify as Exemption 3 statutes.  Additionally, each year OIP compiles a list of Exemption 3 statutes federal agencies relied upon, as reported in their Annual FOIA Reports.  The Fiscal Year 2019 list of Exemption 3 Statutes is now posted in PDF and CSV format.  PDF and CSV versions dating back to FY 2010 are also available on OIP's FOIA Resources page. 

As always, agencies that have any questions regarding Exemption 3 statutes and related court decisions may reach out to OIP for advice through the FOIA Counselor Service.  Be sure to subscribe to FOIA Post email updates to receive additional FOIA news from OIP.

Updated October 7, 2020