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§ 4-203. Timeliness of decision on application

West's Annotated Code of MarylandGeneral ProvisionsEffective: July 1, 2022

West's Annotated Code of Maryland
General Provisions (Refs & Annos)
Title 4. Public Information Act (Refs & Annos)
Subtitle 2. Inspection of Public Records (Refs & Annos)
Effective: July 1, 2022
MD Code, General Provisions, § 4-203
Formerly cited as MD CODE, SG, § 10-614
§ 4-203. Timeliness of decision on application
In general
(a)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection, the custodian shall grant or deny the application promptly, but not more than 30 days after receiving the application.
(2) The custodian shall grant or deny an application that is the subject of § 4-356 of this title not more than 50 days after receiving the application.
Procedure for approval
(b)(1) A custodian who approves the application shall produce the public record immediately or within a reasonable period that is needed to retrieve the public record, but not more than 30 days after receipt of the application.
(2) If the custodian reasonably believes that it will take more than 10 working days to produce the public record, the custodian shall indicate in writing or by electronic mail within 10 working days after receipt of the request:
(i) the amount of time that the custodian anticipates it will take to produce the public record;
(ii) an estimate of the range of fees that may be charged to comply with the request for public records; and
(iii) the reason for the delay.
(3) Failure to produce the public record in accordance with this subsection constitutes a denial of an application that may not be considered the result of a bona fide dispute unless the custodian has complied with paragraph (2) of this subsection and is working with the applicant in good faith.
Procedure for denial
(c)(1) A custodian who denies the application shall:
(i) within 10 working days, give the applicant a written statement that gives:
1. the reasons for the denial;
2. if inspection is denied under § 4-343 of this title:
A. a brief explanation of why the denial is necessary; and
B. an explanation of why redacting information would not address the reasons for the denial;
3. the legal authority for the denial;
4. without disclosing the protected information, a brief description of the undisclosed record that will enable the applicant to assess the applicability of the legal authority for the denial; and
5. notice of the remedies under this title for review of the denial; and
(ii) allow inspection of any part of the record that is subject to inspection.
(2) A custodian may not ignore an application to inspect public records on the grounds that the application was intended for purposes of harassment.
Extension by consent
(d) Any time limit imposed under this section:
(1) with the consent of the applicant, may be extended for not more than 30 days; and
(2) if the applicant or custodian seeks resolution of a dispute under Subtitle 1A or 1B of this title, shall be extended pending resolution of that dispute.


Added by Acts 2014, c. 94, § 2, eff. Oct. 1, 2014. Amended by Acts 2015, c. 135, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2015; Acts 2015, c. 136, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2015; Acts 2017, c. 360, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2017; Acts 2019, c. 297, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2019; Acts 2021, c. 658, § 1, eff. July 1, 2022.
MD Code, General Provisions, § 4-203, MD GEN PROVIS § 4-203
Current through legislation effective through April 9, 2023, from the 2024 Regular Session of the General Assembly. Some statute sections may be more current, see credits for details.
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