Conducting a Search for Responsive Documents

Search - means to look for records, manually or by automated means, for the purpose of locating those records which are potentially responsive to a request.

Know what documents are being sought

Identify and locate records

* In evaluating the adequacy of an agency's search for records responsive to a FOIA request, the "issue is not whether any further documents might conceivably exist but rather whether the government's search for responsive documents was adequate." Weisberg v. United States Dep't of Justice, 705 F.2d 1344, 1351 (D.C. Cir. 1983). An agency "cannot limit its search to only one or more places if there are additional sources that are likely to turn up the information requested." Valencia-Lucena v. United States Coast Guard, FOAI/PA , 180 F.3d 321, 326 (D.C. Cir. 1999).