Requests for Additional Information: Appeal Procedure

All Requests for Additional Information(1) issued by the FTC invite recipients to discuss possible modifications with staff.(2) If the recipient of a Request from the FTC believes that compliance with portions of the Request should not be required and the recipient has exhausted reasonable efforts to obtain modification of the Request from the lead staff attorney and the Assistant Director of the Bureau of Competition supervising the investigation, the recipient may petition the General Counsel of the FTC to hear an appeal on unresolved issues.

The petition for an appeal shall be made by letter to the General Counsel, with a copy to the lead staff attorney. The petition shall be no longer than 2 pages in length and shall address petitioner's efforts to obtain modification from Bureau of Competition staff. 1. Within 2 business days of receipt of such a petition, the General Counsel shall set a date for a conference with the petitioner and investigating staff.   2. Such conference shall take place within 7 business days of receipt of the petition, unless petitioner agrees to a longer time period before the conference or waives his right to a conference.   3. No later than 3 business days before the date of the conference, the petitioner and investigating staff may each submit to the General Counsel written briefs regarding the issues presented in the appeal petition. The briefs shall be no longer than 5 pages double spaced, shall be exchanged with opposing counsel on the same day they are submitted to the General Counsel, and shall include:   (a) a concise explanation of the reasons why the petitioner believes compliance should not be required or of the reasons why investigating staff believe compliance is necessary; and   (b) modifications that the petitioner proposes.   4. The General Counsel shall render a decision on the appeal within 3 business days following the conference.

A petition for an appeal made pursuant to this procedure must be made before the petitioner asserts substantial compliance with the Request for Additional Information, and the petitioner must agree to defer asserting substantial compliance until after this appeal process is completed or the petitioner withdraws its appeal.

Endnotes:

1. Requests for Additional Information are routinely called "second requests" by members of the business community and the antitrust bar.

2. The first paragraph of each FTC Request for Additional Information states:

If a company believes that the required search or any other part of the Request can be narrowed in any way that is consistent with the Commission's need for documents and information, you are encouraged to discuss such questions and possible modifications with the Commission representatives identified on the last page of this Request. . . You may find it useful to provide the response to Specification 1 of this Request promptly and discuss limiting the required search with the Commission's representatives before you begin your search.