Welcome to MuckRock's Tennessee Public Records Act appeal guide!

Each entry provides background and context about an exemption to the public records laws in all fifty states, as well as federal FOIA. Read more about Tennessee's public records law or explore all our expert FOIA guides. Have a public records appeal or information on an exemption we should include? Consider sharing your knowledge with everyone by donating your FOIA appeal language.

Constructive Denial

This guide is for informational purposes only, is general in nature, and is not legal opinion nor legal advice regarding any specific issue or factual circumstance.

There is no legal basis for an agency being completely unresponsive.

Example Appeals

Tennessee Open Records Act T.C.A. § 10-7-503(a)(2)(B) specifically requires that an agency provide a response to a public records request within 7 business days of receipt of that request.

By failing to respond to this request within the legally-mandated timeframe, this agency is in violation of the law.

Please provide acknowledgement of this request and the responsive materials forthwith. If such materials cannot be produced, please provide an appropriate explanation for this rejection, as is dictated by this agency's legal obligations under the Tennessee Open Records Act. Your accelerated attention to this matter will be greatly appreciated.

Proper Use

An agency has 7 business days to respond to the initial request.

Improper Use

According to the Tennessee Open Records Act A records custodian or the custodian’s designee to promptly make requested records available for inspection. If the records cannot be made promptly available, within seven (7) business days, the custodian must do one or more of the following:

Provide access to the record; Deny in writing access to the record with legal basis for denial; or Indicate in writing additional time necessary to produce the record.

Key Citations

T.C.A. § 10-7-503(a)(2)(B)