Experience with Freedom of Info. Requests?

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Experience with Freedom of Info. Requests?

Postby Poipuo4 » 01 Jun 2007, 13:51

I made a FOIA request in Feb. for my great grandmother's alien registration file, just for genealogy purposes. They sent me a letter that it was on the simple track. How long will this process take? Is it too early to give them a call and find out the status of my request?

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Re: Experience with Freedom of Info. Requests?

Postby wldspirit » 01 Jun 2007, 17:25

VaDeb has great experience with these.....I would pm her.......I know she recently had encountered some trauma with the Virginia tech situation...but hopefully she is checking her messages,.......and with God's help......finding some peace.
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Re: Experience with Freedom of Info. Requests?

Postby nuccia » 02 Jun 2007, 02:48

Poor Deb! I haven't heard from her and I also PM'd her a while back. Hopefully things have settled down.

As for the FOIA request..you may want to ask Riccardo. He did one a while back and I don't think it took that long.

*edit..corrected spelling and grammar errors
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Re: Experience with Freedom of Info. Requests?

Postby wldspirit » 02 Jun 2007, 03:39

I was hoping she would check in.........hope everything is okay.......

I do have some info she provided to me awhile back on the FOIA......as some posters were being discouraged from using this resource and I needed clarification on the process......let me see if I still have this info.

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Re: Experience with Freedom of Info. Requests?

Postby wldspirit » 02 Jun 2007, 03:48

It doesn't explain the "simple track"....... :? .....but the info that can be obtained from these request could be a real bonus..........

NARA is great, when they have the record. But that is the short and quick. Usually they will only have the Declaration of Intent and the Final naturalization papers. This is if the court that performed the naturalization uses NARA for their archive.

ICE is federal. You never know what they have until you ask. I have filed 6 FOIA's with them. I submitted a seperate request for each individul of a married couple. I had the requests notarized. Also provided information to prove the ancestor was deceased and show I was related. Usually this was by a copy of an obit. I sent all my requests in within a 6 month period. All but one came back within 2 months. The one that didn't, I think got lost. I think they belived it was filled by providing information on the spouse. I sent it again by providing copies of the first request and it came back within 2 months.

I always request the entire file. On one great grand parent there was information that helped me find a birth record. The file contained a record of their last entry to the USA. This was 1931. No one in the family had mentioned this trip. Sent for the manifest and it was the information I needed.


The ICE request is FREE. It doesn't get any better than this. So, my thought is might as well send for it. You might be surprised!

Hope this helps somewhat....... :)
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Re: Experience with Freedom of Info. Requests?

Postby nuccia » 02 Jun 2007, 04:16

Sent for the manifest and it was the information I needed.


Do you know who she sent the request of the manifest to? This may be something that will help a certain other person... :wink:
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Re: Experience with Freedom of Info. Requests?

Postby wldspirit » 02 Jun 2007, 04:31

No.......sure don't......I was primarily interested in the FOIA......
but I think your right....this may be something of definite interest....... :)

Lee
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Re: Experience with Freedom of Info. Requests?

Postby Poipuo4 » 04 Jun 2007, 13:48

Thanks! I may give it a few more weeks and then call the contact number to check on the status.
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Re: Experience with Freedom of Info. Requests?

Postby nuccia » 04 Jun 2007, 18:21

Poipuo4,

We just sent another one of these requests out yesterday. I have heard that if you make the request too specific, then you may not get everything you want and it could take a long time. And from speaking to a certain person, this did happen so this request was made asking for the complete file like VaDeb previously suggested.

Lets see what happens.
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Re: Experience with Freedom of Info. Requests?

Postby Poipuo4 » 05 Jun 2007, 14:14

I sent two separate requests, and I think they must be considering them as one because they regarded the same person. One request was broad, for my great grandmother's alien registration file, including but not limited to her immigration file. The other request was very specific: there is a CHANCE that there may exist a transcript of her rehearing and appeal before the board of Special Inquiry at Ellis Island. Only records of appeals were saved, everything else destroyed. I made a request for this transcript in a separate FOIA request. I am keeping my fingers and toes crossed that this transcript may exist. I can only day dream about the wealth of information it would contain.
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