De minimis costs. Where the cost of collecting and processing a fee to be assessed to a requester exceeds the amount of the fee which would otherwise be assessed, no fee need be charged. Fees which do not exceed $15.00 usually need not be collected.
How payment will be made. Requesters will pay fees by check or money order made payable to the Treasury of the United States.
Advance payments and billing.
Prior to beginning to process a request, the disclosure officer will make a preliminary assessment of the amount that can properly be charged to the requester for search and review time and copying costs. Where a disclosure officer determines or estimates that a total fee to be charged under this section will be more than $250.00, the disclosure officer will require the requester to make an advance payment of an amount up to the entire anticipated fee before beginning to process the request. The disclosure officer may waive the advance payment where the disclosure officer receives a satisfactory assurance of full payment from a requester who has a history of prompt payment of an amount similar to the one anticipated by the request.
Where a requester has previously failed to pay a properly charged FOIA fee to any component of the Department of Labor within 30 days of the date of billing, a disclosure officer will require the requester to pay the full amount due, plus any applicable interest as provided in Sec. 70.40(f) and to make an advance payment of the full amount of any anticipated fee, before the disclosure officer begins to process a new request or appeal or continues to process a pending request or appeal from that requester.
For a request other than those described in paragraphs (c) (1) and (2) of this section, a disclosure officer will not require the requester to make an advance payment before beginning to process a request. Payment owed for work already completed on a request pursuant to consent of the requester is not an advance payment and a disclosure officer may require the requester to make a payment for such work prior to releasing any records to the requester.
Time limits to respond extended when advance payments are requested. When a component has requested an advance payment of fees in accordance with paragraph (c) of this section, the time limits prescribed in § 70.25 will only begin to run after the component has received the advance payment.
[71 FR 30770, May 30, 2006]