FOIA Service

How to quickly and anonymously submit FOIA requests

Why Submit a FOIA Request

The 1967 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) provides a legal mechanism for requesting unreleased information and documents controlled by the United States government. FOIA requests are a method that sophisticated government contractors use to learn more about existing contracts or grants to better position themselves for future opportunities.

HigherGov makes it easy for anyone to quickly and easily obtain information through a FOIA request. When you submit a FOIA request through HigherGov, we request:

  1. Statement of Work: Typically includes required and optional tasks and a schedule of deliverables for an existing contract. Note that pricing details may be redacted by the government prior to release.

  2. Bidders Lists: See who submitted a bid or application for a contract or grant.

In order to submit a FOIA request, you must have an annual HigherGov subscription.

Benefits of the HigherGov FOIA Service

There are many benefits to submitting FOIA requests through HigherGov:

  1. Fast and Easy: We do all the work to identify and coordinate with the proper government agency and use our experience to get the most information possible as quickly as possible so you can focus on other aspects of business development.

  2. Anonymous: When you submit a FOIA request through HigherGov, we make the request in our own name, which prevents competitors or teaming members from determining that you are the one who made the request.

  3. Don't Annoy Your Customer: Since HigherGov is the entity making the request, you reduce the risk of annoying your agency customer with the FOIA request.

  4. HigherGov Records Search: As part of our FOIA service, HigherGov conducts a separate search of public records and our private FOIA library to see if we can unearth any other information or documents that may be useful.

Process of Submitting a Request Through HigherGov

Finding an Existing Contract or Grant

Starting Request from FOIA Page: Alternatively, you can start the search from the FOIA tool by going to Tools --> FOIA in the sidebar, selecting Contract, IDV, or Grant and entering the award ID.

If you are having a difficult time finding the contract or grant that you would like to make a request for, please do not hesitate to contact us in the chat.

Submitting a request

The only information required to submit a FOIA request is the Award ID, which we can use to find all of the information necessary to submit the FOIA request. You can optionally submit the following additional information:

  • Include: Indicate the information you would like us to request as part of the FOIA request

  • Budget: While most FOIA requests have government costs between $0-100, we recommend setting a budget of $100. See Timeframe and Costs below for more details.

  • Comments: If there is any additional information you would like us to know about your request, please include it here.

Request Timeframe

Under the law, all federal agencies are required to respond to a FOIA request within 20 business days, unless there are "unusual circumstances." While we work with agencies to get information as fast as possible, we recommend submitting a FOIA request as early as possible to ensure that you receive the documentation in a timely manner. Typically response times vary from 1-6 months depending on the agency, but in some cases can take as long as a year.


HigherGov charges a flat fee of $50 for making a FOIA request (for Standard and Leader subscribers, see waivers section below). In addition, the federal government charges fees for searching for documents, typically at a rate of $25-75 per hour.

When submitting a FOIA request, HigherGov allows you to set a Budget to expedite your request. If you do not set a budget, we will try to get an estimate from the federal agency and seek your approval before continuing with the request, which may extend the timeframe.

While most FOIA requests cost less, we strongly recommend setting a budget of at least $100 for your request to prevent any delays.

Fee Waivers

HigherGov will waive its fee for a limited number of FOIA requests per subscription year, depending on the subscription plan:

  • Starter: 0

  • Standard: 3

  • Leader: 10

The total number of waivers remaining on your account will appear beneath the HigherGov Fee section on the FOIA Request page.

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