Lt. Gen. Richard W. Scobee, Chief of the Air Force Reserve and commander of the Air Force Reserve Command testifies

Freedom of Information Act

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Privacy Request

For information on how and what's required to submit a Privacy request click here

FOIA introduction

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) generally provides that any person has a right, enforceable in court, to obtain access to federal agency records, except to the extent that such records (or portions of them) are protected from public disclosure by one of nine exemptions, or by one of three notable law enforcement record exclusions.

The principles of government openness and accountability underlying the FOIA are inherent in the democratic ideal: "The basic purpose of the FOIA is to ensure an informed citizenry, vital to the functioning of a democratic society, needed to check against corruption and to hold the governors accountable to the governed."

Click here for the full text of the Freedom of Information Act. 


Members of the public, including foreign citizens, military and civilian personnel acting as private citizens, organizations and businesses, and individual members of Congress for themselves or constituents, may request records in writing. It is important to remember that the Freedom of Information Act applies only to federal agencies. It does not create a right of access to records held by Congress, the courts, state or local government agencies, or private businesses or individuals. Each state has its public access laws that should be consulted for access to state and local records.


The Air Force Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) program is decentralized. Please submit a FOIA request online utilizing the Public Access Link (PAL) for the fastest response times.

If you prefer not to submit online, you can send mail/fax your request to the FOIA Requester Service Center where the record is located or the base or activity that has the records you want. If you don't know which Air Force activity has the needed documents, mail your request to SAF/AAII, 1000 Air Force Pentagon, Washington, DC 20330-1000.

How do I request a copy of my Military Personnel Records or DD 214?

How do I request a copy of my Military Medical Records?

Mandatory Declassification Review

Suppose you only seek a copy of a record or currently classified records and would like the document reviewed for appropriate declassification and release. In that case, you should file a Mandatory Declassification Review request. Mandatory Declassification Review is a provision of Presidential Executive Order 13526 that allows public members to request a mandatory declassification review of a classified document to obtain a releasable version of the paper.

The requested document must be specified sufficiently so it can be readily located. The record in question may not be the subject of litigation. The mandatory declassification review process can be very timely and in-depth due to the classification of materials being reviewed by internal and outside agencies.  MDR decisions can be administratively appealed to the Headquarters Air Force/AAII (Mandatory Declassification Review) or Interagency Security Classification Appeals Panel (ISCAP).

Requests for review and release of classified records under the MDR process can be made to:
Headquarters Air Force/AAII (Mandatory Declassification Review)
1000 Air Force Pentagon, Washington, DC 20330-1000
Telephone: (703) 695-2226


The FOIA allows fee charges based on the requester's category. There are three categories: Commercial (pay search, review, and reproduction fees); non-commercial scientific or educational institutions or news media (pay reproduction fees; first 100 pages provided at no cost); and others (reimburse to search and reproduction fees; first two hours search, and 100 pages provided at no charge). For information on FOIA fees, read PART 286--DoD FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT PROGRAM REGULATION


Suppose you are advised or expect that a fee will be charged. In that case, you may request in writing a waiver of those fees if the disclosure of the requested information is in the public interest because it is likely to contribute significantly to the general understanding of the operations and activities of the government and is not primarily in the commercial interest of the requester. The mere fact that you are a non-profit organization or a media member does not in and of itself qualify for a fee waiver. In addition, a requester's inability to pay is not a legal basis for granting a fee waiver.