Competitive Enter. Inst. v. Office of Sci. and Tech. Policy, No. 14-765, 2015 WL 967549 (D.D.C. Mar. 3, 2015) (Kessler, J.)
Re: Request for OSTP-related e-mails contained in OSTP Director's non-government e-mail account
Disposition: Granting defendant's motion to dismiss
- Litigation Considerations: The court agrees with defendant's argument "that it is not 'withholding' the requested emails because it neither possesses nor controls them." The court explains that plaintiff is seeking "work-related emails residing on [the OSTP Director's] unofficial email account . . . which is maintained by a private entity, the Woods Hole Research Center." The court finds that "agencies do not—merely by way of the employer/employee relationship—gain 'control' over their employees' personal email accounts." The court finds that "'Congress never intended when it enacted [ ] FOIA, to displace the statutory scheme embodied in the Federal Records Act and the Federal Records Disposal Act providing for administrative remedies to safeguard against wrongful removal of agency records as well as to retrieve wrongfully removed records.'"