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How to Submit a USMS FOIA Request


To submit your request online click the "Sign In" link on the top right to sign in or register. Once logged in, click the "Submit a FOIA Request" link and complete the online form.

  • As you navigate the "Sign In" procedures, please follow all prompts, look for red system warnings, and make sure that all required fields are completed.
  • If you have requested a document download as your method of delivery, you will receive an email telling you when those documents are available. In order to retrieve those documents, you will need to "Sign In" to the system and check the status of your request. Upon reaching that screen, you will see a small download icon next to your request status. Click there in order to download the documents relating to your case onto your computer.

Requests should:

  • Fully describe the records you seek and provide enough detail so that the records can be located. Such detail should include descriptive information, the appropriate timeframe, and any specific location(s) to be searched. Please be as specific as possible when you submit your FOIA request.  Additionally, please note the FOIA states that records must exist at the time the request is submitted to be considered responsive to a FOIA request.  The provisions of the FOIA do not require an agency to create records in response to a FOIA request.  Additionally, a federal agency is not required to answer questions posed as a FOIA request.  Your FOIA/Privacy Act request must be for specific agency documents and records.
  • Provide your full name, a full mailing address, email address, and telephone number so that you may be contacted if the USMS requires additional information. The mailing address may also be used to contact you.  Failure to provide this information may result in your request not being processed. If any of this contact information changes, it is your responsibility to update USMS; accordingly, failure to update the contact information may result in delays in your receipt of any responses.

  • When required, please provide an Authorization to disclose records to you. You must provide a written release, (signed by the individual whose information and records you seek) which includes identifying data, authorizing the USMS to disclose information pertaining to a third-party individual, to you.

  • If you are a USMS/DOJ employee seeking records, please provide a personal email address to be utilized for electronic responses.  
  • Specify the format in which you would like to receive the records; by default, USMS will provide the requested documents in Portable Document Format (PDF). The USMS cannot guarantee you will receive the records in your preferred format, but the Agency will make every attempt possible to honor your request.
  • Contain an agreement to pay fees associated with the processing of your request. If your request has the potential to produce a large amount of responsive documents, you will be notified and provided with an estimate of applicable fees. Your agreement to pay fees will be solicited before processing of the records occurs.  Additionally, in certain cases the USMS may require prepayment of fees.   Please see further information on fees, below.
  • Upon receipt of the request, the USMS will generate an acknowledgment letter that summarizes the request, provides a USMS case number.  Additionally, the acknowledgment letter will inform the requestor of any potential delays in processing the request (such as those that arise due to a substantial backlog, low staffing, and/or due to a pandemic). 

The mailing address for submitting a FOIA request, if needed, is:

United States Marshals Service
Office of the General Counsel
Freedom of Information Act Unit
CG-3, 15th Floor
Washington, DC 20530-0001


Time Frame

The FOIA requires a federal agency to respond to a FOIA request within 20 working days from the date the request was received in the specific office responsible for responding to such requests. An agency may invoke a ten-day extension to this requirement, due to exceptional or unforeseen circumstances.  The USMS will make every effort to acknowledge and process FOIA requests submitted to the agency in a timely manner.

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