The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), as amended, was enacted in 1966 and provides that any person has the right to request access to federal agency records or information. All agencies of the United States government are required to disclose records upon receiving a written request for them, except for those records that are protected from disclosure by nine exemptions. This right of access is enforceable in court.
On October 2, 1996, the Electronic Freedom of Information Act Amendments of 1996 (E-FOIA) was signed into law. The new law requires agencies to respond to a FOIA request within 20 working days, excluding holidays.