44 CFR 5.84 - Production of documents in private litigation.
(a) The production of records held by FEMA in response to a subpoena duces tecum or other demand issued pursuant to private litigation, whether or not served in accordance with the provisions of § 5.83 of this subpart, is prohibited absent authorization by the Chief Counsel.
(b) Whenever an official or employee of FEMA, including any Regional Administrator, receives a subpoena or other demand for the production of Agency documents or material, he or she shall immediately notify and provide a copy of the demand to the Chief Counsel.
(c) The Chief Counsel, after consultation with other appropriate officials as deemed necessary, shall promptly determine whether to disclose the material or documents identified in the subpoena or other demand. Generally, authorization to furnish the requested material or documents shall not be withheld unless their disclosure is prohibited by relevant law or for other compelling reasons.
(d) Whenever a subpoena or demand commanding the production of any record is served upon any Agency employee other than as provided in § 5.83 of this subpart, or the response to a demand is required before the receipt of instructions from the Chief Counsel, such employee shall appear in response thereto, respectfully decline to produce the record(s) on the ground that it is prohibited by this section and state that the demand has been referred for the prompt consideration of the Chief Counsel.
(e) Where the release of documents in response to a subpoena duces tecum is authorized by the Chief Counsel, the official having custody of the requested records will furnish, upon the request of the party seeking disclosure, authenticated copies of the documents. No official or employee of FEMA shall respond in strict compliance with the terms of a subpoena duces tecum unless specifically authorized by the Chief Counsel.