Exemptions to the Open Records Law

The law presumes all records are open and places the burden on the University to demonstrate than any requested materials are exempt. Such exemptions are limited and have been interpreted very narrowly by the courts. If a public record contains both exempt and non-exempt material, the exempt portion must be removed and the remaining non-exempt material disclosed.  Following are exemptions most relevant to UGA:

  • Medical and veterinary records
  • Records relating to pending criminal investigations
  • Records required by the federal government to be kept confidential, such as student academic records
  • Trade secrets and certain information of a proprietary nature
  • Certain research data, records or information that has not been published, patented or otherwise publicly disseminated
  • Confidential evaluations submitted to a public agency in connection with the hiring of a public employee
  • Personal information concerning donors or potential donors to any public post-secondary educational institution