Challenging the denial of a Freedom of Information Law request on the representation that the records are exempt from disclosure
After an unsuccessful administrative appeal, Petitioner initiated litigation to compel the custodian to produce the case file. Supreme Court denied the petition and dismissed the proceeding. Petitioner appealed the Supreme Court’s decision.
** The release of some public records is limited by statute [see, for example, Education Law, §1127 - Confidentiality of records; §33.13, Mental Hygiene Law - Clinical records; confidentiality]. Otherwise an individual is not required to submit a FOIL request as a condition precedent to obtaining public records where access is not barred by statute unless the custodian of the public record[s] sought declines to “voluntarily” provide the information or record requested. In such cases the individual or organization is required to file a FOIL request to obtain the information. It should also be noted that there is no bar to providing information pursuant to a FOIL request, or otherwise, that falls within one or more of the FOIL exceptions that the custodian could rely upon in denying a FOIL request, in whole or in part, for the information or records demanded.
The decision is posted on the Internet at: