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How to Request Government Records


  2. In order to request access to government records under OPRA, the requestor must complete all the required portions of and date the Department of Human Services' request form and deliver it in person during regular business hours or by mail to the appropriate custodian of the record requested. The request is not considered filed until the appropriate custodian of the record requested has received a completed request form. If the form is submitted form to any other officer or employee of the Department of Human Services, that officer or employee does not have the authority to accept the request form on behalf of the Department of Human Services and the requestor will be directed to the appropriate custodian. Alternatively, requests may be sent electronically by clicking on "State Request Form", above left, and by following the prompts.

  3. If a request for access to government records form is submitted to someone other than the appropriate custodian, all parts of the request form have not been completed, or an attempt is made to make a request for records by telephone, fax or e-mail, the Open Public Records Act and its deadlines, restrictions and remedies will not apply to the request.

  4. The fees for duplication of a government record are listed on the request form. The custodian will notify the requestor of any special charges, special service charges or other additional charges authorized by State law or regulation before processing the request. Payment shall be made by cash, certified or bank check or money order payable to the State of New Jersey - Treasurer. 

  5. If it is necessary for the records custodian to contact the requestor concerning the request, providing identifying information, such as the requestor's name, address and telephone number or an e-mail address is required. Anonymous requests are permitted; however, anonymous
    requests for personal information are not permitted.

  6. Anonymous requests, when permitted, require a deposit of 50% of the estimated fees. The balance must be paid upon delivery of the records.

  7. Under OPRA, a custodian must deny access to a person who has been convicted of an indictable offense in New Jersey, any other state, or the United States, and who is seeking government records containing personal information pertaining to the victim of the requestor or the victim’s family.

  8. By law, the custodian must notify the requestor that the request for access to government records is granted or denied within seven business days after the custodian of the record receives the request, provided that the record is currently available and not in storage. If the record is not currently available or is in storage, the custodian will advise the requestor within seven business days when the record can be made available and the estimated cost. The requestor may agree to extend the time for making records available.

  9. The requestor may be denied access to a government record if the requestor's request would substantially disrupt agency operations and the custodian is unable to reach a reasonable solution with the requestor.

  10. If the Department of Human Services is unable to comply with the request for access to a government record, the custodian will indicate the reasons for denial on a receipt form and send the requestor a signed and dated copy.

  11. Except as otherwise provided by law or by agreement with the requestor, if the custodian of the record fails to respond to the requestor within seven business days of receiving a request form, the failure to respond will be considered a denial of the request.

  12. If the request for access to a government record has been denied or unfilled within the time permitted by law, the requestor has a right to challenge the decision by the Department of Human Services to deny access. At the requestor's option, the requestor may either institute a proceeding in the Superior Court of New Jersey - Appellate Division, or file a complaint in writing with the Government Records Council (GRC). The GRC may be
    contacted toll-free at 866-850-0511, by mail at PO Box 819, Trenton, NJ, 08625, by e-mail at, or through the GRC website at

  13. The following table includes the mailing address for the Records Custodians of the Department of Human Services.





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