EEOC Seal

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission



[Code of Federal Regulations]
[Title 29, Volume 4, Parts 900 to 1899]
[Revised as of July 1, 1998]
From the U.S. Government Printing Office via GPO Access
[CITE: 29CFR1611]

[Page 241-247]

                             TITLE 29--LABOR

         CHAPTER XIV--EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION

PART 1611--PRIVACY ACT REGULATIONS

Sec.
1611.1  Purpose and scope.
1611.2  Definitions.
1611.3  Procedures for requests pertaining to individual records in a
          record system.
1611.4  Times, places, and requirements for identification of
          individuals making requests.
1611.5  Disclosure of requested information to individuals.
1611.6  Special procedures: Medical records.
1611.7  Request for correction or amendment to record.
1611.8  Agency review of request for correction or amendment to record.
1611.9  Appeal of initial adverse agency determination on correction or
          amendment.
1611.10  Disclosure of record to person other than the individual to
          whom it pertains.
1611.11  Fees.
1611.12  Penalties.
1611.13  Specific exemptions.

    Authority: 5 U.S.C. 552a.

    Source: 42 FR 7949, Feb. 8, 1977, unless otherwise noted.

Sec. 1611.1  Purpose and scope.

    This part contains the regulations of the Equal Employment
Opportunity Commission (the Commission) implementing the Privacy Act of
1974, 5 U.S.C. 552a. It sets forth the basic responsibilities of the
Commission under the Privacy Act (the Act) and offers guidance to
members of the public who wish to exercise any of the rights established
by the Act with regard to records maintained by the Commission. All
records contained in system EEOC/GOVT-1, including those maintained by
other agencies, are subject to the Commission's Privacy Act regulations.
Requests for access to, an accounting of disclosures for, or amendment
of records in EEOC/GOVT-1 must be processed by agency personnel in
accordance with this part. Commission

[[Page 242]]

records that are contained in a government-wide system of records
established by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM), the
General Services Administration (GSA), the Merit Systems Protection
Board (MSPB), the Office of Government Ethics (OGE) or the Department of
Labor (DOL) for which those agencies have published systems notices are
subject to the publishing agency's Privacy Act regulations. Where the
government-wide systems notices permit access to these records through
the employing agency, an individual should submit requests for access
to, for amendment of or for an accounting of disclosures to the
Commission offices as indicated in Sec. 1611.3(b).
[56 FR 29580, June 28, 1991]

Sec. 1611.2  Definitions.

    For purposes of this part, the terms individual, maintain, record,
and system of records shall have the meanings set forth in 5 U.S.C.
552a.

Sec. 1611.3  Procedures for requests pertaining to individual records in
          a record system.

    (a) Any person who wishes to be notified if a system of records
maintained by the Commission contains any record pertaining to him or
her, or to request access to such record or to request an accounting of
disclosures made of such record, shall submit a written request, either
in person or by mail, in accordance with the instructions set forth in
the system notice published in the Federal Register. The request shall
include:
    (1) The name of the individual making the request;
    (2) The name of the system of records (as set forth in the system
notice to which the request relates);
    (3) Any other information specified in the system notice; and
    (4) When the request is for access to records, a statement
indicating whether the requester desires to make a personal inspection
of the records or be supplied with copies by mail.
    (b) Requests pertaining to records contained in a system of records
established by the Commission and for which the Commission has published
a system notice should be submitted to the person or office indicated in
the system notice. Requests pertaining to Commission records contained
in the government-wide systems of records listed below should be
submitted as follows:
    (1) For systems OPM/GOVT-1 (General Personnel Records), OPM/GOVT-2
(Employee Performance File System Records), OPM/GOVT-3 (Records of
Adverse Actions and Actions Based on Unacceptable Performance), OPM/
GOVT-5 (Recruiting, Examining and Placement Records), OPM/GOVT-6
(Personnel Research and Test Validation Records), OPM/GOVT-9 (Files on
Position Classification Appeals, Job Grading Appeals and Retained Grade
or Pay Appeals), OPM/GOVT-10 (Employee Medical File System Records) and

DOL/ESA-13 (Office of Workers' Compensation Programs, Federal Employees'
Compensation File), to the Director of Personnel Management Services,
EEOC, 1801 L Street, NW., Washington, DC 20507;
    (2) For systems OGE/GOVT-1 (Executive Branch Public Financial
Disclosure Reports and Other Ethics Program Records), OGE/GOVT-2
(Confidential Statements of Employment and Financial Interests) and
MSPB/GOVT-1 (Appeal and Case Records), to the Legal Counsel, EEOC, 1801
L Street, NW., Washington, DC 20507;
    (3) For system OPM/GOVT-7 (Applicant Race, Sex, National Origin, and
Disability Status Records), to the Director of the Office of Equal
Employment Opportunity, EEOC, 1801 L Street, NW., Washington, DC 20507;
    (4) For systems GSA/GOVT-3 (Travel Charge Card Program) and GSA/
GOVT-4 (Contracted Travel Services Program) to the Director of Financial
and Resource Management Services, EEOC, 1801 L Street, NW., Washington,
DC 20507.
    (c) Any person whose request for access under paragraph (a) of this
section is denied, may appeal that denial in accordance with
Sec. 1611.5(c).
[42 FR 7949, Feb. 8, 1977, as amended at 56 FR 29581, June 28, 1991]

[[Page 243]]

Sec. 1611.4  Times, places, and requirements for identification of
          individuals making requests.

    (a) If a person submitting a request for access under Sec. 1611.3
has asked that the Commission authorize a personal inspection of records
pertaining to that person, and the appropriate Commission official has
granted that request the requester shall present himself or herself at
the time and place specified in the Commission's response or arrange
another, mutually convenient time with the appropriate Commission
official.
    (b) Prior to inspection of the records, the requester shall present
sufficient personal identification (e.g., driver's license, employee
identification card, social security card, credit cards). If the
requester is unable to provide such identification, the requester shall
complete and sign in the presence of a Commission official a signed
statement asserting his or her identity and stipulating that he or she
understands that knowingly or willfully seeking or obtaining access to
records about another individual under false pretenses is a misdemeanor
punishable by fine up to $5,000.
    (c) Any person who has requested access under Sec. 1611.3 to records
through personal inspection, and who wishes to be accompanied by another
person or persons during this inspection, shall submit a written
statement authorizing disclosure of the record in such person's or
person's presence.
    (d) If an individual submitting a request by mail under Sec. 1611.3
wishes to have copies furnished by mail, he or she must include with the
request a signed and notarized statement asserting his or her identity
and stipulating that he or she understands that knowlingly or willfully
seeking or obtaining access to records about another individual under
false pretenses is a misdemeanor punishable by fine up to $5,000.
    (e) A request filed by the parent of any minor or the legal guardian
of any incompetent person shall: state the relationship of the requester
to the individual to whom the record pertains; present sufficient
identification; and, if not evident from information already available
to the Commission, present appropriate proof of the relationship or
guardianship.
    (f) A person making a request pursuant to a power of attorney must
possess a specific power of attorney to make that request.
    (g) No verification of identity will be required where the records
sought are publicly available under the Freedom of Information Act.

Sec. 1611.5  Disclosure of requested information to individuals.

    (a) Upon receipt of request for notification as to whether the
Commission maintains a record about an individual and/or request for
access to such record:
    (1) The appropriate Commission official shall acknowledge such
request in writing within 10 working days of receipt of the request.
Wherever practicable, the acknowledgement should contain the
notification and/or determination required in paragraph (a) (2) of this
section.
    (2) The appropriate Commission official shall provide, within 30
working days of receipt of the request, written notification to the
requester as to the existence of the records and/or a determination as
to whether or not access will be granted. In some cases, such as where
records have to be recalled from the Federal Records Center,
notification and/or a determination of access may be delayed. In the
event of such a delay, the Commission official shall inform the
requester of this fact, the reasons for the delay, and an estimate of
the date on which notification and/or a determination will be
forthcoming.
    (3) If access to a record is granted, the determination shall
indicate when and where the record will be available for personal
inspection. If a copy of the record has been requested, the Commission
official shall mail that copy or retain it at the Commission to present
to the individual, upon receipt of a check or money order in an amount
computed pursuant to Sec. 1611.11.
    (4) When access to a record is to be granted, the appropriate
Commission official will normally provide access within 30 working days
of receipt of the request unless, for good cause shown, he or she is
unable to do so, in which case the requester shall be informed

[[Page 244]]

within 30 working days of receipt of the request as to those reasons and
when it is anticipated that access will be granted.
    (5) The Commission shall not deny any request under Sec. 1611.3
concerning the existence of records about the requester in any system of
records it maintains, or any request for access to such records, unless
that system is exempted from the requirements of 5 U.S.C. 552a in
Sec. 1611.13.
    (6) If the Commission receives a request pursuant to Sec. 1611.3 for
access to records in a system of records it maintains which is so
exempt, the appropriate Commission official shall deny the request.
    (b) Upon request, the appropriate Commission official shall make
available an accounting of disclosures pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552a(c)(3).
    (c) If a request for access to records is denied pursuant to
paragraph (a) or (b) of this section, the determination shall specify
the reasons for the denial and advise the individual how to appeal the
denial. If the request pertains to a system of records for which the
Commission has published a system notice, any appeal must be submitted
in writing to the Legal Counsel, EEOC, 1801 L Street, NW., Washington,
DC 20507. If the request pertains to a government-wide system of records
any appeal should be in writing, identified as a Privacy Act appeal and
submitted as follows:
    (1) For systems established by OPM and for which OPM has published a
system notice, to the Assistant Director for Workforce Information,
Personnel Systems and Oversight Group, OPM, 1900 E Street, NW.,
Washington, DC 20415. The OPM Privacy Act regulations, 5 CFR 297.207,
shall govern such appeals.
    (2) For systems established by OGE and for which OGE has published a
system notice, to the Privacy Act Officer, Office of Government Ethics,
1201 New York Avenue, NW., Suite 500, Washington, DC 20005-3917. The OGE

Privacy Act regulations, 5 CFR part 2606, shall govern such appeals.
    (3) For the system established by MSPB and for which MSPB has
published a system notice, to the Deputy Executive Director for
Management, U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board, 1120 Vermont Avenue,
NW., Washington, DC 20419. The MSPB Privacy Act regulations, 5 CFR part
1205, shall govern such appeals.
    (4) For systems established by GSA and for which GSA has published a
system notice, to GSA Privacy Act Officer, General Services
Administration (ATRAI), Washington, DC 20405. The GSA Privacy Act
regulations, 41 CFR 105-64.301-5, shall govern such appeals.
    (5) For the system established by DOL and for which DOL has
published a system notice, to the Solicitor of Labor, Department of
Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210. The DOL

Privacy Act regulations, 29 CFR 70a.9, shall govern such appeals.
    (d) In the event that access to a record is denied on appeal by the
Legal Counsel or the Legal Counsel's designee, the requestor shall be
advised of his or her right to bring a civil action in Federal district
court for review of the denial in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552a(g).
    (e) Nothing in 5 U.S.C. 552a or this part allows an individual
access to any information compiled in reasonable anticipation of a civil
action or proceeding.
[42 FR 7949, Feb. 8, 1977, as amended at 56 FR 29581, June 28, 1991]

Sec. 1611.6  Special procedures: Medical records.

    In the event the Commission receives a request pursuant to
Sec. 1611.3 for access to medical records (including psychological
records) whose disclosure of which the appropriate Commission official
determines could be harmful to the individual to whom they relate, he or
she may refuse to disclose the records directly to the requester but
shall transmit them to a physician designated by that individual.

Sec. 1611.7  Request for correction or amendment to record.

    (a) Any person who wishes to request correction or amendment of any
record pertaining to him or her which is contained in a system of
records maintained by the Commission, shall submit that request in
writing in accordance with the instructions set forth in

[[Page 245]]

the system notice for that system of records. If the request is
submitted by mail, the envelope should be clearly labeled ``Personal
Information Amendment.'' The request shall include:
    (1) The name of the individual making the request;
    (2) The name of the system of records as set forth in the system
notice to which the request relates;
    (3) A description of the nature (e.g., modification, addition or
deletion) and substance of the correction or amendment requested; and
    (4) Any other information specified in the system notice.
    (b) Any person submitting a request pursuant to paragraph (a) of
this section shall include sufficient information in support of that
request to allow the Commission to apply the standards set forth in 5
U.S.C. 552a (e).
    (c) All requests to amend pertaining to personnel records described
in Sec. 1611.3(b) shall conform to the requirements of paragraphs (a)
and (b) of this section and may be directed to the appropriate officials
as indicated in Sec. 1611.3(b). Such requests may also be directed to
the system manager specified in the OPM's systems notices.
    (d) Any person whose request under paragraph (a) of this section is
denied may appeal that denial in accordance with Sec. 1611.9(a).
[42 FR 7949, Feb. 8, 1977, as amended at 56 FR 29581, June 28, 1991]

Sec. 1611.8  Agency review of request for correction or amendment to
          record.

    (a) When the Commission receives a request for amendment or
correction under Sec. 1611.7(a), the appropriate Commission official
shall acknowledge that request in writing within 10 working days of
receipt. He or she shall promptly either:
    (1) Determine to grant all or any portion of a request for
correction or amendment; and:
    (i) Advise the individual of that determination;
    (ii) Make the requested correction or amendment; and
    (iii) Inform any person or agency outside the Commission to whom the
record has been disclosed, and where an accounting of that disclosure is
maintained in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552a(c), of the occurrence and
substance of the correction or amendments, or;
    (2) Inform the requester of the refusal to amend the record in
accordance with the request; the reason for the refusal; and the
procedures whereby the requester can appeal the refusal to the Legal
Counsel of the Commission.
    (b) If the Commission official informs the requester of the
determination within the 10-day deadline, a separate acknowledgement is
not required.
    (c) In conducting the review of a request for correction or
amendment, the Commission official shall be guided by the requirements
of 5 U.S.C. 552a(e).
    (d) In the event that the Commission receives a notice of correction
or amendment from another agency that pertains to records maintained by
the Commission, the Commission shall make the appropriate correction or
amendment to its records and comply with paragraph (a)(1)(iii) of this
section.
    (e) Requests for amendment or correction of records maintained in
the government-wide systems of records listed in Sec. 1611.5(c) shall be
governed by the appropriate agency's regulations cited in that
paragraph. Requests for amendment or correction of records maintained by
other agencies in system EEOC/GOVT-1 shall be governed by the
Commission's regulations in this part.
[42 FR 7949, Feb. 8, 1977, as amended at 56 FR 29581, June 28, 1991]

Sec. 1611.9  Appeal of initial adverse agency determination on
          correction or amendment.

    (a) If a request for correction or amendment of a record in a system
of records established by EEOC is denied, the requester may appeal the
determination in writing to the Legal Counsel, EEOC, 1801 L Street, NW.,
Washington, DC 20507. If the request pertains to a record that is
contained in the government-wide systems of records listed in
Sec. 1611.5(c), an appeal must be made in accordance with the
appropriate agency's regulations cited in that paragraph.
    (b) The Legal Counsel or the Legal Counsel's designee shall make a
final determination with regard to an appeal

[[Page 246]]

submitted under paragraph (a) of this section not later than 30 working
days from the date on which the individual requests a review, unless for
good cause shown, this 30-day period is extended and the requester is
notified of the reasons for the extension and of the estimated date on
which a final determination will be made. Such extensions will be used
only in exceptional circumstances and will not normally exceed 30
working days.
    (c) In conducting the review of an appeal submitted under paragraph
(a) of this section, the Legal Counsel or the Legal Counsel's designee
shall be guided by the requirements of 5 U.S.C. 552a(e).
    (d) If the Legal Counsel or the Legal Counsel's designee determines
to grant all or any portion of a request on an appeal submitted under
paragraph (a) of this section, he or she shall so inform the requester,
and the appropriate Commission official shall comply with the procedures
set forth in Sec. 1611.8(a)(1)(ii) and (iii).
    (e) If the Legal Counsel or the Legal Counsel's designee determines
in accordance with paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section not to grant
all or any portion of a request on an appeal submitted under paragraph
(a) of this section, he or she shall inform the requester:
    (1) Of this determination and the reasons for it;
    (2) Of the requester's right to file a concise statement of reasons
for disagreement with the determination of the Legal Counsel or the
Legal Counsel's designee;
    (3) That such statements of disagreement will be made available to
anyone to whom the record is subsequently disclosed, together with (if
the Legal Counsel or Legal Counsel's designee deems it appropriate) a
brief statement summarizing the Legal Counsel or Legal Counsel's
designee's reasons for refusing to amend the record;
    (4) That prior recipients of the disputed record will be provided
with a copy of the statement of disagreement together with (if the Legal
Counsel or Legal Counsel's designee deems it appropriate) a brief
statement of the Legal Counsel or Legal Counsel's designee's reasons for
refusing to amend the record, to the extent that an accounting of
disclosure is maintained under 5 U.S.C. 552a(c); and
    (5) Of the requester's right to file a civil action in Federal
district court to seek a review of the determination of the Legal
Counsel or the Legal Counsel's designee in accordance with 5 U.S.C.
552a(g).
    (f) The Legal Counsel or the Legal Counsel's designee shall ensure
that any statements of disagreement submitted by a requestor are made
available or distributed in accordance with paragraphs (e) (3) and (4)
of this section.
[56 FR 29582, June 28, 1991]

Sec. 1611.10  Disclosure of record to person other than the individual
          to whom it pertains.

    The Commission shall not disclose any record which is contained in a
system of records it maintains, by any means of communication to any
person or to another agency, except pursuant to a written request by, or
with the prior written consent of the individual to whom the record
pertains, unless the disclosure is authorized by one or more provisions
of 5 U.S.C. 552a(b).

Sec. 1611.11  Fees.

    (a) No fee shall be charged for searches necessary to locate
records. No charge shall be made if the total fees authorized are less
than $1.00. Fees shall be charged for services rendered under this part
as follows:
    (1) Photocopies (per page), $.15.
    (2) Attestation of each record as a true copy, $.75.
    (3) Certification of each record as a true copy under the seal of
the Commission, $1.00.
    (b) All required fees shall be paid in full prior to issuance of
requested copies of records. Fees are payable to ``Treasurer of the
United States.''
[42 FR 7949, Feb. 8, 1977, as amended at 56 FR 29582, June 28, 1991]

Sec. 1611.12  Penalties.

    The criminal penalties which have been established for violations of
the Privacy Act of 1974 are set forth in 5 U.S.C. 552a(i). Penalties are
applicable to any officer or employee of the Commission; to contractors
and employees

[[Page 247]]

of such contractors who enter into contracts with the Commission on or
after September 27, 1975, and who are considered to be employees of the
Commission within the meaning of 5 U.S.C. 552a(m); and to any person who
knowingly and willfully requests or obtains any record concerning an
individual from the Commission under false pretenses.

Sec. 1611.13  Specific exemptions.

    Pursuant to subsection (k)(2) of the Act, 5 U.S.C. 552a(k)(2),
systems EEOC-1 (Age and Equal Pay Act Discrimination Case Files), EEOC-3
(title VII and Americans With Disabilities Act Discrimination Case
Files) and EEOC/GOVT-1 (Equal Employment Opportunity Complaint Records
and Appeal Records) are exempt from subsections (c)(3), (d), (e)(1),
(e)(4)(G), (e)(4)(H), (e)(4)(I) and (f) of the Act. The Commission has
determined to exempt these systems from the above named provisions of
the Privacy Act for the following reasons:
    (a) The files in these systems contain information obtained by the
Commission and other Federal agencies in the course of investigations of
charges and complaints that violations of title VII of the Civil Rights
Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Equal Pay Act, the
Americans With Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act have
occurred. In some instances, agencies obtain information regarding
unlawful employment practices other than those complained of by the
individual who is the subject of the file. It would impede the law
enforcement activities of the Commission and other agencies for these
provisions of the Act to apply to such records.
    (b) The subject individuals of the files in these systems know that
the Commission or their employing agencies are maintaining a file on
their charge or complaint, and the general nature of the information
contained in it.
    (c) Subject individuals of the files in each of these systems have
been provided a means of access to their records by the Freedom of
Information Act. Subject individuals of the charge files in system EEOC-
3 have also been provided a means of access to their records by section
83 of the Commission's Compliance Manual. Subject individuals of the
case files in system EEOC/GOVT-1 have also been provided a means of
access to their records by the Commission's Equal Employment Opportunity
in the Federal Government regulation, 29 CFR 1613.220.
    (d) Many of the records contained in system EEOC/GOVT-1 are obtained
from other systems of records. If such records are incorrect, it would
be more appropriate for an individual to seek to amend or correct those
records in their primary filing location so that notice of the
correction can be given to all recipients of that information.
    (e) Subject individuals of the files in each of these systems have
access to relevant information provided by the allegedly discriminating
employer as part of the investigatory process and are given the
opportunity to explain or contradict such information and to submit any
responsive evidence of their own. To allow such individuals the
additional right to amend or correct the records submitted by the
allegedly discriminating employer would undermine the investigatory
process and destroy the integrity of the administrative record.
    (f) The Commission has determined that the exemption of these three
systems from subsections (c)(3), (d), (e)(1), (e)(4)(G), (e)(4)(H),
(e)(4)(I), and (f) of the Privacy Act is necessary for the agency's law
enforcement efforts.
[56 FR 29582, June 28, 1991]