Open records policy

Colorado Open Records Act Policy

The following policy has been developed in order to implement the Colorado Open Records Act (Colo. Rev. Stat. §24‐72‐201 et. seq.). This policy is not intended to be duplicative of the Colorado Open Records Act or supersede state law.

Office procedure for handling records requests

All records requests submitted to Pinnacol Assurance (“Pinnacol”) by mail, fax, courier, or e‐mail shall be handled by the legal department. Pinnacol will accept only records requests made in writing or electronically via e‐mail or fax. Records requests made via social media will not be accepted and must be resubmitted. Records requests or requestors that cite the federal Freedom of Information Act will be treated as though they were made pursuant to the Colorado Open Records Act.

Requests for information must include the following:

  1. Subject matter to be searched in as descriptive terms as possible;
  2. Dates of search; and
  3. Types of documents to be searched (email, written documents, reports, etc.)

As described below, in most cases when Pinnacol receives a records request, its staff will estimate the time it will take to search, retrieve, redact and compile the information. The estimate is provided to the requestor before work is performed to determine if the search is still needed. Upon response from the requestor, Pinnacol will make every effort to respond within three working days unless the request for records is voluminous, overly broad/and or the records are not readily available, as described in Colo. Rev. Stat §24‐72‐203(3)(b). In that case, Pinnacol may add up to a seven‐working‐day extension or may make arrangements with the requestor to produce the documents as soon as is reasonable and practical. A notice of a time extension must be communicated to the requesting party within three business days of receiving the request.

A request is received the day an e‐mail, fax or letter containing a request is opened. A request received after noon or any day Pinnacol’s offices are closed will be considered received as of the following working day.

When feasible, Pinnacol will endeavor to provide electronic copies or files to requestors if such alternative is significantly less burdensome to provide than paper records. The requester will be notified when the electronic information is compiled and available. Pinnacol will hold such information for the requestor for ten business days. After that, the compiled electronic information may be destroyed and the requestor will have to pay for the information to be compiled again.

When responsive records cannot be easily or cost‐effectively provided electronically to a requestor, Pinnacol will work with the requestor to schedule a time to inspect the records in person. Pinnacol is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, except holidays.

Fees

When a substantial request is made — requiring the production of more than 25 pages of documents or more than one hour of staff time to locate or produce records — Pinnacol will charge the requestor for all copying expenses and for staff time in accordance with Colo. Rev. Stat. §24‐72‐205(5)(a), and applicable law. Any costs charged to a requestor will not exceed the actual cost of producing the records.

For requests where Pinnacol anticipates more than 25 pages will be produced and/or more than one hour of staff time will be consumed, Pinnacol will provide a requestor with advance notice and an estimate of compliance costs. Such costs must be paid in full before the production of records unless alternative arrangements have been made. If the actual costs exceed the initial estimate provided by Pinnacol, the actual cost will be billed to the requestor and the requestor will be required to pay that cost prior to production of the records.

Copying documents

When the number of pages produced in response to a records request exceeds 25 pages, Pinnacol will charge $0.25 per page for all documents copied. The requestor will be notified when the copies are available for pick-up. Pinnacol will hold copies for the requestor for ten business days. After that, the copies may be destroyed and the requestor will have to pay for a new set of copies to be made.

Document retrieval and production of records – hourly rate

When researching the location, retrieving, or producing records consumes more than one hour of staff time, Pinnacol will charge $30 an hour for staff time. In some circumstances, the use of a third party contractor may be necessary and will be discussed with the requestor in advance. Use of a third party contractor may increase the cost of production of the records. This cost must be paid in full prior to production of records.

The requestor will also be charged $30 an hour for time spent by a Pinnacol attorney engaged in the practice of law directly related to a records request, including but not limited to, the review of documents for privilege or other exemptions to production; document redaction; creation of documents that articulate the privileged nature of the requested documents; or conducting Colorado Open Records Act related legal research.

Payment is due within 30 days of the invoice date. Past due amounts will be referred to collections. When a requestor (either an individual or organization) has an overdue balance for a prior completed request to Pinnacol, work on a new CORA request will not begin until the overdue bill is paid in full.

The format of records produced

The Colorado Open Records Act guarantees that "all public records shall be open for inspection by any person at reasonable times, except as provided in this part 2 or as otherwise specifically provided by law." See Colo. Rev. Stat. §24‐72‐201. The Colorado Open Records Act does not guarantee access to public records in a specific format and it does not require that Pinnacol construct a document that does not exist. When the production or review of records in a specific format would interfere with the regular duties of Pinnacol employees, see Colo. Rev. Stat. §24‐ 72‐203(1)(a), or levy an undue burden upon Pinnacol, Pinnacol will determine the appropriate format for the records to be produced. Pinnacol may require that requestors only be allowed to review copies of documents when Pinnacol determines that allowing access to originals could interfere with the regular discharge of duties of Pinnacol, its officers or its staff, or production of original records could jeopardize the condition of the records.

Direct requests and any questions regarding this policy to:

Legal Department
Pinnacol Assurance
7501 E. Lowry Blvd. Denver, CO 80230
Phone: (303) 361-4000 or (800) 873-7242
Fax: (303) 361-5975

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