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History, Politics & Society
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Birth Certificates
Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)

Doesn't a request to see an elected public servant's birth certificate fall under the Freedom of Information Act?


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November 26, 2008 7:25AM

In the U.S., there are both Federal and State level FOIA laws.

Information accessible varies according to the specific act you are trying to invoke. They are analogous to one another, but not the same.

In general, they allow the public access to the workings of government. Minutes of meetings, records of bids, and etc. are open. Copies of Vital Records are usually not specifically covered; most states have exemptions to access to personnel records. You may be able to find out what someone is paid, but not when that person was born.

We annually request the salaries of county employees at work, for instance. But not their personnel files.