The Bureau’s FOIA Office is Open For Business
How to Reach Us
While we navigate the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Bureau’s FOIA team remains committed to transparency and responsiveness as we work to address your FOIA inquiries in a timely manner. Access to the Bureau’s headquarters building is currently restricted and Bureau staff, including the FOIA team, are on mandatory telework.
The FOIA team currently has no access to U.S. mail, overnight mail services, or fax.
As a result, our responses to mail and fax inquiries will be significantly delayed. The Bureau is working to restore the FOIA team’s access to these services.
While the Bureau is closely monitoring this situation, this change affects how we communicate with our customers. To ensure a more timely response, please contact the Bureau’s FOIA team by email. If you have recently submitted a FOIA request or FOIA appeal to the Bureau by U.S. mail, overnight mail services, or fax, please resend any documents by email so that we may assist you further.
- Commercial Use Requesters – charged for all search, record review and redaction, and record duplication costs.
- News Media, Educational, or Scientific Requesters – charged for record duplication only (after the first 100 pages).
- Other Requesters – charged for search costs (after the first two hours) and record duplication costs (after the first 100 pages).
The Bureau has established the following fee schedule in accordance with Uniform Freedom of Information Act Fee Schedule and Guidelines promulgated by the Office of Management and Budget. See 52 Fed. Reg. 10011 (March 27, 1987).
Record duplication charges
- Fees for the duplication of paper records are $0.10 per page.
- Fees for printing electronic records include direct costs and labor costs.
Record search charges
- If only clerical staff conducted the search, then search fees will accrue at the rate of $9.00 per 15 minutes.
- If only professional staff conducted the search, then search fees will accrue at the rate of $23.00 per 15 minutes for professional staff.
- If a combination of clerical and professional staff conducted the search, then search fees will accrue at the basic pay rate plus 16% of the employee(s) who conducted the search.
Record review and redaction charges
- If only clerical staff conducted the review, then review fees will accrue at the rate of $13.00 per 15 minutes.
- If only professional staff conducted the review, then review fees will accrue at the rate of $23.00 per 15 minutes for professional staff.
- If a combination of clerical and professional staff conducted the review, then review fees will accrue at the basic pay rate plus 16% of the employee(s) who conducted the review.
Other services and materials requested which are not covered above are chargeable at the actual cost to the CFPB. This includes, but is not limited to certifying that records are true copies or sending records by special methods such as Express Mail. Fees associated with these services may vary based upon current market prices for such services. The Bureau will notify requesters of these costs prior to incurring them.
Fee limits established by requester
In your request letter you may make a specific statement limiting the amount of fees you are willing to pay (provided that the limit is not less than $25.00). If you do not, the Bureau will assume that you are willing to pay fees of up to $25.00. If your estimated fees exceed $25.00, you will be given the opportunity to narrow your request in order to reduce the fees or you will be asked to express your commitment to pay the estimated amount.
If you expect or are advised that a fee will be charged, you may request a fee waiver of those fees. However, fee waivers are limited to situations in which a requester can show that disclosure of the requested information is in the public interest because it is likely to contribute significantly to public understanding of the operations and activities of the government and is not primarily in the commercial interest of the requester.
Payment of fees
Ordinarily, you will not be required to pay the fees until after the records have been processed and sent to you. You may be required to pay fees in advance, however, if the Bureau determines that processing your request will cost more than $250.00 or if you have a history of non-payment or late payment of fees.
Important payment information
All FOIA fees must be paid in U.S. dollars and by check (made payable to the “United States Treasury”). Make certain that you reference the specific FOIA request number (e.g. CFPB-2011-001) on the check.