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Midwest State FOIA Resources

​​​​Reporters working in the Midwest can find individual FOIA laws and resources for Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, Kentucky and Wisconsin on this page. Select your state below for more information on filing a FOIA request.

Overview

The Illinois Freedom of Information Act requires all state public agencies to respond to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests within five business days. There must be an explanation for the delay and fees will be waived after 20 days. Illinois law requires that all public bodies appoint a FOIA officer.

The act defines public records as all records, reports, forms, writings, letters, memoranda, books, papers, maps, photographs, microfilms, cards, tapes, recordings, electronic data processing records, recorded information and all other documentary materials under the control of any public body.

For more information on Illinois FOIA law, visit the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press website.

How to File a FOIA Request in Illinois

FOIA requests can be submitted via email or by mail. See a sample FOIA request for Illinois from the National Freedom of Information Coalition. Visit the state's website for a list of departments you can FOIA and their FOIA officers.

Public bodies you may want to FOIA include:

Overview

The Indiana Access to Public Records Act (APRA) requires all state public agencies to acknowledge Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests within seven days if sent by mail or email. If the request is made in person, the public agency must respond within 24 hours. Responding to the request does not mean the records will be produced. The Indiana Public Access Counselor has consistently stated that records should be produced within a reasonable time.

For more information of Indiana FOIA law, visit the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press website.

How to File a FOIA Request in Indiana

FOIA requests can be submitted via email, by mail or in person. See a sample FOIA request for Indiana from the National Freedom of Information Coalition. For a list of Indiana agencies, visit the state’s website.

Public bodies you may want to FOIA include:

Overview

The Iowa Open Records Law allows “good faith, reasonable” delay in completing a request, but it shouldn’t exceed 20 calendar days and typically should not exceed 20 business days.

For more information on Iowa Open Records Law, visit the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press website.

How to File a FOIA Request in Iowa

FOIA requests can be submitted via email or by mail. Some departments also accept requests online. See a sample FOIA request for Iowa from the National Freedom of Information Coalition. Visit the state's website for a list of public agencies, departments and organizations.

Public bodies you may want to FOIA include:

Overview

The Michigan Freedom of Information Act allows five days for a response to record requests. The act allows all persons, except those who are incarcerated in state or local correctional facilities, to request records. A public body that is a city, village, township, county, or state department, or under the control of a city, village, township, county, or state department, is required to designate an individual as the public body’s FOIA Coordinator.

Michigan’s FOIA laws do not apply to the governor and lieutenant governor’s offices. For more information of Michigan FOIA law, visit the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press website.

How to File a FOIA Request in Michigan

FOIA requests can be submitted via email or by mail. See a sample FOIA request for Michigan from the National Freedom of Information Coalition.

Public bodies you may want to FOIA include:

Overview

The Missouri Sunshine Law allows three days for the return of record requests.

For more information of Michigan FOIA law, visit the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press website.

How to File a FOIA Request in Missouri

FOIA requests can be submitted via email or by mail. See a sample FOIA request for Missouri from the National Freedom of Information Coalition. Visit the state's website for a list of public agencies, departments and organizations.

Public bodies you may want to FOIA include:

Overview

The Kentucky Open Records Act allows a three day limit on records requests, but extensions are allowed in some cases. However, departments are allowed to deny requests if it places "an unreasonable burden" on the department, or if it believes the request was designed to disrupt the flow of government work. Anyone can request public records.

For more information of Kentucky FOIA law, visit the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press website.

How to File a FOIA Request in Kentucky

FOIA requests can be submitted via email or by mail. See a sample FOIA request for Kentucky from the National Freedom of Information Coalition. Visit the state's website for a list of public agencies, departments and organizations.

Public bodies you may want to FOIA include:

Overview

The Wisconsin Open Records Law does not specify a time limit for agencies to respond to requests. People who are incarcerated or have been involuntarily committed to a mental institution are restricted in their rights to access public documents.

Wisconsin defines record as any document, regardless of physical form, that "has been created or is being kept by" an agency.

For more information of Wisconsin FOIA law, visit the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press website.

How to File a FOIA Request in Wisconsin

FOIA requests can be submitted via email or by mail. See a sample FOIA request for Wisconsin from the National Freedom of Information Coalition.

Below is a list of public bodies you may want to FOIA. The Department of Administration also lists a host of agency’s preferred email contacts for open records requests.