In testimony before the House Oversight Committee, United States Archivist David Ferriero was asked directly if the Internal Revenue Service disobeyed the law by failing to archive electronic communications and destroying the evidence of those communications. Ferriero conceded that the IRS did not follow the Federal Records Act.

On Tuesday, Rep. Tim Walberg (R-MI) asked Ferriero if the IRS had reported the loss of two years’ of former executive Lois Lerner’s emails prior to disclosing that this month.

“No,” Ferriero replied.

When asked if the IRS violated the Federal Records Act, Ferriero said that the law requires every federal agency to notify the Archives if they determine they have lost records. He did, however, refuse to say whether the agency broke the law because he was not an attorney.

“If they didn’t follow [the Federal Records Act], can we safely assume they broke the law?” Walberg asked.

“They did not follow the law,” Ferriero replied.