22 CFR 706.34 - What, if any, fees will I be charged?
(a) General policy. You generally will be charged for costs incurred by OPIC in complying with your FOIA request, in accordance with paragraph (c) of this section and as required or permitted by law. As explained more fully in paragraph (c) of this section, fees will vary according to your requester status.
(3) Duplication costs are $.15 per page for photocopying, and direct costs for all other media (including any operator time involved).
(b) Anticipated fees. Your FOIA request must specifically state that you will pay all fees chargeable under this section or, alternatively, that you will pay fees up to a specified limit. If your request makes no reference to anticipated fees and your request is expected to involve fees of more than $25, or OPIC estimates that the fees will exceed the dollar limit specified in your request, OPIC will promptly notify you of the estimated fees.
(1) Commercial use requesters. Commercial use requesters will be charged the cost of all time spent searching for and reviewing for release the requested records and for all duplication costs.
(2) Educational and non-commercial scientific institution requesters. Educational and non-commercial scientific institution requesters will be charged only the costs of duplication. No fee will be charged for the costs of photocopying the first 100 pages of documents or for the first $15 of other media costs. To be eligible for inclusion in this category, you must show that your request is being made under the auspices of a qualifying educational institution or non-commercial scientific institution and that the records are sought in furtherance of scholarly (if the request is from an educational institution) or scientific (if the request is from a non-commercial scientific institution) research.
(3) Representatives of the news media. Representatives of the news media will be charged only the costs of duplication. No fee will be charged for the costs of photocopying the first 100 pages of documents or for the first $15 of other media costs. To be eligible for inclusion in this category, you must be a representative of the news media and your request must not be made for a commercial use. A request for records that supports the news dissemination function of the requester is not considered to be a request that is for a commercial use.
(4) All other requesters. All other requesters will be charged for the cost of any search time in excess of two hours, photocopying any documents in excess of 100 pages, and any costs in excess of the first $15 of other media costs.
(d) Fees for searches that produce no records. Fees will be charged as provided in this section even if OPIC's search and review does not produce any disclosable records.
(e) Special services charges. At its discretion, OPIC may comply with requests for special services such as certification of documents or shipping methods other than regular U.S. mail. You will be charged the direct costs of any such services. OPIC will inform you of the cost of any special service(s) that you request, and you must pay this cost before OPIC will finish processing your FOIA request. If you do not wish to pay the stated cost, you may rescind your request for the special service(s).
(f) Advance payments. Where OPIC estimates that fees are likely to exceed $250, you will be required to make an advance payment of the entire fee before OPIC continues to process your request. You will be provided an opportunity to narrow the scope of your request if you do not want to pay the entire amount of the estimated fees.
(g) Restrictions on assessing fees. With the exception of commercial use requesters, the FOIA requires agencies to provide the first 100 pages of photocopying and the first two hours of search time to requesters without charge. Moreover, the FOIA prohibits agencies from charging fees to any requester, including commercial use requesters, if the cost of collecting the fee would be equal to or greater than the fee itself. OPIC has determined that its cost of collecting a FOIA fee is $15. In implementing these provisions, OPIC will not begin to assess fees until after providing the free search and reproduction described above, except for commercial use requesters. For example, for a request involving four hours of search time and results in 105 pages of documents, OPIC will determine the cost of only 2 hours of search time and only five pages of duplication.
(1) OPIC will begin assessing interest charges on the 31st calendar day following the date of billing. Interest will be at the rate prescribed in section 3717 of Title 31 of the United States Code.
(2) If you previously failed to pay a FOIA fee to OPIC in a timely fashion, you must pay the full amount owed plus any applicable interest as provided above and make an advance payment of the full amount of the estimated fee before OPIC will process a new FOIA request from you.
(3) When OPIC acts under paragraphs (h)(1) or (2) of this section, the administrative time limits for processing FOIA requests (i.e., 20 working days from receipt of initial request and 20 working days from receipt of an appeal plus permissible extensions) will begin only after OPIC has received full payment of all applicable fees and interest.
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