(a) A bureau will provide expedited processing when you request it if you demonstrate to the satisfaction of the bureau that there is a compelling need for the records. The following circumstances demonstrate a compelling need:
(1) Where failure to expedite the request could reasonably be expected to pose an imminent threat to the life or physical safety of an individual; or
(2) An urgency to inform the public about an actual or alleged Federal Government activity if the request is made by a person primarily engaged in disseminating information. In most situations, a person primarily engaged in disseminating information will be a representative of the news media. The requested information must be the type of information which has particular value that will be lost if not disseminated quickly, and ordinarily refers to a breaking news story of general public interest. Therefore, information of historical interest only, or information sought for litigation or commercial activities, would not qualify, nor would a news media deadline unrelated to breaking news.
(b) A request for expedited processing should be submitted with your FOIA request. For a prompt determination, you must submit a request complying with the requirements of §§ 2.8 and 2.10 to the FOIA Contact at the bureau office that maintains the records you are seeking.
(c) If you are seeking expedited processing, you must submit a statement explaining in detail the basis for your request. You must certify in your letter that your need for expedited processing is true and correct to the best of your knowledge and belief. For example, a requester within the category of paragraph (a)(2) of this section, if not a full time member of the news media, must establish that he or she is a person whose main professional activity or occupation is information dissemination, though it need not be his/her sole occupation.
(d) Within 10 calendar days of receipt of your request, the bureau will notify you whether it will grant expedited processing. If expedited processing is granted, the bureau will give priority to that FOIA request and process the request as soon as practicable. If expedited processing is denied, the bureau will notify you of your right to appeal the decision on expedited processing. Appeals of denials of requests for expedited processing will be processed ahead of other appeals (see § 2.32(b)). If the bureau has not responded to your request for expedited processing within 10 calendar days, you have a right to file an appeal for nonresponse (see § 2.28(a)(7)).