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Freedom of Information and Privacy Act Requests

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management's Federal Investigative Services (OPM-FIS) conducts background investigations on Federal applicants, employees, military members and contractor personnel for suitability and security purposes at the request of another Federal Agency. These records are maintained in a Privacy Act System of Records.

OPM Background investigations are maintained in the OPM Personnel Investigations Records System, covered by the OPM/Central-9 SORN. Also, please see 5 CFR 297 for additional information regarding OPM's Privacy Procedures for Personnel Records.

Freedom of Information and Privacy Act Requests from OPM-FIS

To request a copy of your own background investigation you should submit a request to the FIS FOI/PA office. You may use the INV100 Freedom of Information, Privacy Act Record Request Form  or submit a handwritten request.

This INV100 is specific to OPM-FIS and has been created by the FIS FOI/PA office to streamline the process of requesting background investigations records in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act and/or the Privacy Act. Although use of this form is not mandatory, we encourage you to utilize it when making a request. Providing all the information requested on the INV-100 will help ensure your request is not returned for additional information. 

Alternatively, if you wish to submit a handwritten request, your request must include all of the following information:

  • Full name
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Social Security Number
  • Email address or Mailing address where information should be mailed
  • Handwritten signature
  • Statement that you are requesting your most recent SF 85, SF 85P, or SF 86
  • You must include the following unsworn declaration in your request: “I declare under the penalty of perjury under the laws of the United States of America that the foregoing is true and correct, and I am the person about whom I am requesting records. I understand that any falsification of this statement is punishable under the provisions of 18 U.S.C. § 1001 by a fine of not more than $10,000, or by imprisonment for not more than five years or both, and that requesting or obtaining any record(s) under false pretenses is punishable under the provisions of 5 U.S.C. § 552a(i)(3) by a fine of not more than $5,000.”

Requests can be sent to the OPM-FIS FOI/PA office via the methods listed below:

Mail to:
FOI/PA office
OPM-FIS
PO Box 618
1137 Branchton Road
Boyers, PA 16018-0618

Or

E-mail: FISFOIPARequests@opm.gov

  • Advisement: You may submit your request as a scanned attachment to an email. However, you should ensure that the security of your email system is adequate for transmitting sensitive information before choosing to transmit your request which contains your personally identifiable information (full name, social security number, date of birth, etc.).

Access by the Representative of the Subject

A record may be disclosed to a representative of the individual to whom the record pertains after OPM-FIS has received a written authorization from the individual who is the subject of the record. The written authorization must include an original notarized statement, or, an unsworn declaration in accordance with 28 U.S.C. 1746, in the following format: I declare (or certify, verify, or state) under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct. The unsworn declaration must include the date the declaration was executed and the subject's signature. The subject must also provide the name and mailing address of the third party to whom he/she is permitting us to release his/her record.

Amendment of Records

According to 5 CFR 297, Subpart C, individuals may request, in writing, the amendment of their record(s) maintained in our System of Records. In order for OPM-FIS to process such a request, the individual is required to submit a written request containing:

  • Full name
  • Date and place of birth
  • Social Security Number
  • Handwritten signature
  • Mailing address where information should be mailed
  • Precise identification of the records to be amended
  • Identification of the specific material to be deleted, added, or changed
  • A statement of the reasons for the request, including all available material substantiating the request.
  • You must include the following unsworn declaration in your request: “I declare under the penalty of perjury under the laws of the United States of America that the foregoing is true and correct, and I am the person about whom I am requesting records. I understand that any falsification of this statement is punishable under the provisions of 18 U.S.C. § 1001 by a fine of not more than $10,000, or by imprisonment for not more than five years or both, and that requesting or obtaining any record(s) under false pretenses is punishable under the provisions of 5 U.S.C. § 552a(i)(3) by a fine of not more than $5,000.”

Requests for amendment of records should include the words "PRIVACY ACT AMENDMENT REQUEST" in capital letters on both the envelope and at the top of the request letter.

The burden of proof demonstrating the appropriateness of the requested amendment rests with the requester. The requester must provide relevant and convincing evidence in support of the request.

The amendment procedures are not intended to allow a challenge to material that records an event that actually occurred nor are they designed to permit a collateral attack upon that which has been or could have been the subject of a judicial, quasi-judicial, or administrative proceeding. The amendment procedures are also not designed to change opinions in records pertaining to the individual.

The amendment procedures do apply to situations when an occurrence that is documented was challenged through an established judicial, quasi-judicial, or administrative procedure and found to be inaccurately described; when the document is not identical to the individual's copy; or when the document is not created in accordance with the applicable recordkeeping requirements.

If an individual's representative submits an amendment request of behalf of the subject, written authorization from the individual who is the subject of the record must also be submitted to OPM-FIS. The written authorization must include the name and address of the representative. It should also state the subject's permission for the representative to request amendment of the subject's record on behalf of the subject, and, indicate that OPM-FIS is authorized to correspond with and release a copy of the revised report to the representative. The written authorization must contain an original notary stamp, or, an unsworn declaration (from the subject) in accordance with 28 U.S.C. 1746, in the following format: I declare (or certify, verify, or state) under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct. The unsworn declaration must include the date the declaration was executed and the subject's signature.

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