Sample FOIA Request Letter

This page offers instructions on information needed to make a Freedom of Information Act request and provides a sample FOIA request letter you can use.


  • Please provide a detailed description. For example, if requesting records on Saddam Hussein, you could write: Saddam Hussein, who served as president of Iraq from 1979 until 2003. 
  • If your request is for information concerning a deceased individual, you must provide proof of death. Acceptable forms of proof of death include obituaries, death certificates, recognized sources that can be documented, written media, Who’s Who in America, an FBI file that indicates a person is deceased, date of birth is 100 years or greater, or Social Security Death Index page.
  • If you wish to include additional specific information, attach another sheet of paper to this letter.
  • If you have questions about this request letter, please email
  • Mail your request to: 
    Attn: FOIPA Request
    200 Constitution Drive
    Winchester, VA  22602

Sample Letter


Attn: FOIPA Request
200 Constitution Drive
Winchester, VA  22602

Dear FOIA Officer: 

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act.

Date range of request: 

Description of request:

Please search the FBI’s indices to the Central Records System for the information responsive to this request related to:

I am willing to pay up to [$____ ] for the processing of this request. Please inform me if the estimated fees will exceed this limit before processing my request.

I am seeking information for personal use and not for commercial use.

Thank you for your consideration,


Title (optional): 

Business (if applicable): 

Street Address: 

City/State/ZIP Code:

Country (if applicable): 

Phone (optional): 

Email (optional):