Module 3: Classifcation

Section 3.6 Segregation of records

If a record contains both information that the requester is entitled to and information that the requester is not entitled to, then the governmental entity: 1) shall provide access to the information the requester is entitled to inspect and 2) may deny access to the information that the requester is not entitled to inspect.

Segregation is the process of separating out this information.  If a record contains both public and restricted information, then the requester has the right to inspect the public information and the governmental entity has the responsibility to segregate the restricted information out of the record.

If a record contains private information that the requester is entitled to inspect—e.g., if he or she is the subject of the record—but also contains information about other subjects, then the governmental entity has the responsibility to segregate the information about the other subjects from the record.

This process is also called “redaction,” which is to obscure the restricted information in the document, though this term is not used in GRAMA. Many public records contain private information that should be segregated or redacted before the records are disclosed. The end result should produce a meaningful record to meet good practices standards. If a governmental entity is in doubt on how and what to segregate or redact, it should consult its legal counsel.