22 CFR § 172.1 - Purpose and scope; definitions.

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§ 172.1 Purpose and scope; definitions.

(a) This part sets forth the procedures to be followed with respect to:

(1) Service of summonses and complaints or other requests or demands directed to the Department of State (Department) or to any Department employee or former employee in connection with federal or state litigation arising out of or involving the performance of official activities of the Department; and

(2) The oral or written disclosure, in response to subpoenas, orders, or other requests or demands of federal or state judicial or quasi-judicial authority (collectively, “demands”), whether civil or criminal in nature, or in response to requests for depositions, affidavits, admissions, responses to interrogatories, document production, or other litigation-related matters, pursuant to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, or applicable state rules (collectively, “requests”), of any material contained in the files of the Department, any information relating to material contained in the files of the Department, or any information acquired while the subject of the demand or request is or was an employee of the Department as part of the performance of that person's duties or by virtue of that person's official status.

(b) For purposes of this part, and except as the Department may otherwise determine in a particular case, the term employee includes the Secretary and former Secretaries of State, and all employees and former employees of the Department of State or other federal agencies who are or were appointed by, or subject to the supervision, jurisdiction, or control of the Secretary of State or his Chiefs of Mission, whether residing or working in the United States or abroad, including United States nationals, foreign nationals, and contractors.

(c) For purposes of this part, the term litigation encompasses all pre-trial, trial, and post-trial stages of all judicial or administrative actions, hearings, investigations, or similar proceedings before courts, commissions, boards (including the Board of Appellate Review), or other judicial or quasi-judicial bodies or tribunals, whether criminal, civil, or administrative in nature. This part governs, inter alia, responses to discovery requests, depositions, and other pre-trial, trial, or post-trial proceedings, as well as responses to informal requests by attorneys or others in situations involving litigation. However, this part shall not apply to any claims by Department of State employees (present or former), or applicants for Department employment, for which jurisdiction resides with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board; the Office of Special Counsel; the Federal Labor Relations Authority; the Foreign Service Labor Relations Board; the Foreign Service Grievance Board; or a labor arbitrator operating under a collective bargaining agreement between the Department and a labor organization representing Department employees; or their successor agencies or entities.

(d) For purposes of this part, official information means all information of any kind, however stored, that is in the custody and control of the Department, relates to information in the custody and control of the Department, or was acquired by Department employees as part of their official duties or because of their official status within the Department while such individuals were employed by or served on behalf of the Department.

(e) Nothing in this part affects disclosure of information under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552, the Privacy Act, 5 U.S.C. 552a, Executive Order 13526 (3 CFR, 2009 Comp., p. 298), the Government in the Sunshine Act, 5 U.S.C. 552b, the Department's implementing regulations in 22 CFR part 171 or pursuant to congressional subpoena. Nothing in this part otherwise permits disclosure of information by the Department or its employees except as provided by statute or other applicable law.

(f) This part is intended only to inform the public about Department procedures concerning the service of process and responses to demands or requests and is not intended to and does not create, and may not be relied upon to create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law by a party against the Department or the United States.

(g) Nothing in this part affects:

(1) The disclosure of information during the course of legal proceedings in non-United States courts, commissions, boards, or other judicial or quasi-judicial bodies or tribunals; or

(2) The rules and procedures, under applicable U.S. law and international conventions, governing diplomatic and consular immunity.

(h) Nothing in this part affects the disclosure of official information to other federal agencies or Department of Justice attorneys in connection with litigation conducted on behalf or in defense of the United States, its agencies, officers, and employees, or to federal, state, local, or foreign prosecuting and law enforcement authorities in conjunction with criminal law enforcement investigations, prosecutions, or other proceedings, e.g., extradition, deportation.

[57 FR 32896, July 24, 1992, as amended at 83 FR 17489, Apr. 20, 2018]