North Carolina FOIA procedures
Each state varies slightly in the procedures used to gain access to public documents. This article serves to describe specifically the steps used in North Carolina. To read the history and details of North Carolina’s sunshine laws please see North Carolina Public Records Law
How to request public records in North Carolina
The act requires that all requests be directed at the public agency in custody of the records.
Purpose and use
North Carolina law explicitly states that no individual making a request for records will be required to state a purpose. The act does not restrict the use of records as well.
Who may request public records?
- See also: How much do public records cost?
North Carolina establishes two different types of records with two different fees. For un-certified copies, the department may charge only the actual cost of duplication not including the labor involved. However, if the search is expansive and requires a great deal of staff time, an additional special fee may be charged. The law indicates that fees for certified copies will be as indicated by law but does not indicate what law.
- See also: Request response times by state
North Carolina is one of seventeen states that sets no absolute deadline for government agencies to fulfill FOIA requests. Section § 132-6 of the NCGS states that a custodian of public records shall make them available "at reasonable times and under reasonable supervision by any person, and shall, as promptly as possible, furnish copies thereof upon payment of any fees as may be prescribed by law."
State of North Carolina
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