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Trautman v. DOJ, No. 16-1629, 2018 WL 3448227 (D.D.C. July 17, 2018) (Friedrich, J.)


Trautman v. DOJ, No. 16-1629, 2018 WL 3448227 (D.D.C. July 17, 2018) (Friedrich, J.)

Re:  Request for records about an investigation into the Archivist of the United States

Disposition:  Granting in part and denying in part defendant's motion for summary judgment

  • Litigation Considerations, Adequacy of Search:  The court finds that, "[w]hen the adequacy of an agency's search is contested, the factual question is 'whether the search was reasonably calculated to discover the requested documents, not whether it actually uncovered every document extant.'"  "Absent additional information about the searches conducted by NARA's Office of General Counsel, Equal Employment Opportunity Office, and Office of Human Capital, the Court is unable to determine whether these searches were adequate."  "Accordingly, consistent with this Circuit’s precedent," the court directs NARA to "identify the search terms that the staff members in these offices used to search their electronic records, as well as the reason for any differences in the record systems they searched." The court also directs NARA to "clarify how staff members searched their desks, file cabinets, file drawers and file rooms for nonelectronic records." 


Court Decision Topic(s)
District Court opinions
Litigation Considerations, Adequacy of Search
Updated December 1, 2021