303.14 Procedures for responding to a subpoena.§ 303.14 Procedures for responding to a subpoena.
(a) Purpose and scope. (1) This part sets forth the procedures to be followed in proceedings in which the Peace Corps is not a party, whenever a subpoena, order or other demand (collectively referred to as a “demand”) of a court or other authority is issued for:
(i) The production or disclosure of any material contained in the files of the Agency;
(ii) The production or disclosure of any information relating to material contained in the files of the Agency;
(iii) The production or disclosure of any information or material acquired by any person while such person was an employee of the Agency as a part of the performance of his official duties or because of his official status, or
(iv) The production of an employee of the Agency for the deposition or an appearance as a witness in a legal action or proceeding.
(2) For purposes of this part, the term “employee of the Agency” includes all officers and employees of the Agency appointed by, or subject to the supervision, jurisdiction or control of, the director of the Agency, including personal services contractors. Also for purposes of this part, records of the Agency do not include records of the Office of Inspector General.
(3) This part is intended to provide instructions regarding the internal operations of the Agency, and is not intended, and does not and may not be relied upon, to create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law by a party against the Agency.
(4) This part applies to:
(i) State and local court, administrative and legislative proceedings; and
(ii) Federal court and administrative proceedings.
(5) This part does not apply to:
(i) Congressional requests or subpoenas for testimony or documents;
(ii) Employees or former employees making appearances solely in their private capacity in legal or administrative proceedings that do not relate to the Agency (such as cases arising out of traffic accidents or domestic relations). Any question regarding whether the appearance relates solely to the employee's or former employee's private capacity should be referred to the Office of the General Counsel.
(6) Nothing in this part otherwise permits disclosure of information by the Agency except as is provided by statute or other applicable law.
(b) Procedure in the event of a demand for production or disclosure. (1) No employee or former employee of the Agency shall, in response to a demand of a court or other authority set forth in § 303.14(a) produce any material, disclose any information or appear in any proceeding, described in § 303.14(a) without the approval of the General Counsel or designee.
(2) Whenever an employee or former employee of the Peace Corps receives a demand for the production of material or the disclosure of information described in § 303.14(a) he shall immediately notify and provide a copy of the demand to the General Counsel or designee. The General Counsel, or designee, shall be furnished by the party causing the demand to be issued or served a written summary of the information sought, its relevance to the proceeding in connection with which it was served and why the information sought is unavailable by any other means or from any other sources.
(3) The General Counsel, or designee, in consultation with appropriate Agency officials, including the Agency's FOIA Officer, or designee, and in light of the considerations listed in § 303.14(d), will determine whether the person on whom the demand was served should respond to the demand.
(4) To the extent he deems it necessary or appropriate, the General Counsel or designee, may also require from the party causing such demand to be issued or served a plan of all reasonably foreseeable demands, including but not limited to names of all employees and former employees from whom discovery will be sought, areas of inquiry, length of time of proceedings requiring oral testimony and identification of documents to be used or whose production is sought.
(c) Considerations in determining whether production or disclosure should be made pursuant to a demand. (1) In deciding whether to make disclosures pursuant to a demand, the General Counsel or designee, may consider, among things:
(i) Whether such disclosure is appropriate under the rules of procedure governing the case or matter in which the demand arose; and
(ii) Whether disclosure is appropriate under the relevant substantive law concerning privilege.
(2) Among the demands in response to which disclosure will not be made are those demands with respect to which any of the following factors exist:
(i) Disclosure would violate a statute or a rule of procedure;
(ii) Disclosure would violate the privacy rights of an individual;
(iii) Disclosure would violate a specific regulation;
(iv) Disclosure would reveal classified information, unless appropriately declassified by the originating agency;
(v) Disclosure would reveal trade secrets or proprietary information without the owner's consent;
(vi) Disclosure would otherwise adversely affect the interests of the United States or the Peace Corps; or
(vii) Disclosure would impair an ongoing Inspector General or Department of Justice investigation.[68 FR 66008, Nov. 25, 2003, as amended at 79 FR 19820, Apr. 10, 2014]