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Under The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), Title 5 of the United States Code, section 552, any person has the right to request access to public records: criminal records, arrests & warrants, inmate records, vital records & more.

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State Public Records Information

The Freedom of Information Act empowers the general public to access several types of records. Both federal as well as the various state governments permit the public to view the records for reasons of safety and security. State public records information is frequently obtained for the purpose of conducting discrete background checks or for checking out the financial credibility of a person.


State Corporate Records


The state of Alaska provides details about the business licenses that were maintained by the Alaska Division of Corporations as well as the Business and Professional Licensing of the state. An online search for such licenses can be conducted at .

The official websites of the secretary of state ( ), consumer affairs ( ) and the small and local business development (|31105| ) of the District of Columbia  provide the facility of searching for  information about the registered organizations, business licenses and a number of small business enterprises which are at a disadvantage.

The Idaho Secretary of State ( ) as well as Louisiana Secretary of State ( ) websites also provide information on the various business entities registered with their respective states. Most of the other states have similar resources available for checking out the public corporate records.


Correction Records


Almost all the states across the United States of America offer public access to its inmate records. The departments of corrections usually maintain the records of the inmates including those on probation or parole. Information about the inmates who have been released can be retrieved by conducting a search through the databases as well.

The state of North Carolina provides the facility of going through its inmate records at . The other states have similar facilities as well.

The sex offender registry can be regarded as the commonest facility for going through state public records. The details of each sex offender along with his whereabouts are revealed to the public for reasons of safety and security only.


Court Records


Access to the various courts records of the state are permitted by almost all states of the USA. The circuit court records of Wisconsin are available at . Washington court record search is also available at the court website

The Internet resource of South Dakota Unified Judicial System is the online search facility for the court records of the state.  Rhode Island court records, on the other hand, provide the opportunity of going through the criminal database ( )as well as the court calendars. Oklahoma state court docket search can be conducted by logging in to the resource at .

Most of the other states also provide public access to their court records in some form or the other. The clerks of each county court house as well as the district and circuit courts of the states provide access to the records along with the additional facility of making requests for copies of the documents.


Property Records


A record of real estate property assessment along with the assessment details for personal property is available for the public access in the District of Columbia. A list of unclaimed property information can also be retrieved by going through the database,a,1326,q,590719,.asp.

The state of Maine provides public access to the property assessor and appraisers’ database. The same holds true for Maryland as well. The state of Michigan has several online resources dedicated to the property records of the state. Oakland County provides detailed information on both commercial as well as residential properties located within the county itself. A resource for checking out specific fraud cases related to property is provided as well. Wayne County, on the other hand, has online search facilities for land records.

Tax Information for Gallatin County is available in the state of Montana. Bernalillo County of New Mexico also provides the facility of searching for registered property documents at


Vital Records


Birth, death, marriage licenses as well as divorce decrees form a part of the vital records which are considered to be public records usually. The state department of health is generally entrusted with the responsibility of maintaining the vital records of the state.

The information obtained from accessing the various types of vital records includes the full name of the concerned individual along with the address and the date of the event. Birth and marriage records also contain the name of the parents. Both the set of parents are included in marriage records along with details of previous marriages if any. Divorce records contain information about the couple’s progeny. Death records are more diverse giving details of the burial location together with the name of the person reporting the death as well as the death certificate.

Requests by mail are entertained by the official vital records division in most states across the country. The turn around time is 2-3 weeks normally with the copies of birth and death certificates taking a little more time than usual.


State-Specific Public Record Information:


Alabama Public Records

Alaska Public Records

Arizona Public Records

Arkansas Public Records

California Public Records

Colorado Public Records

Connecticut Public Records

Delaware Public Records

Florida Public Records

Georgia Public Records

Hawaii Public Records

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Louisiana Public Records

Maryland Public Records

Massachusetts Public Records

Michigan Public Records

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Mississippi Public Records

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Nebraska Public Records

Nevada Public Records

New Jersey Public Records

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New York Public Records

North Carolina Public Records

Ohio Public Records

Oklahoma Public Records

Oregon Public Records

Pennsylvania Public Records

South Carolina Public Records

Tennessee Public Records

Texas Public Records

Utah Public Records

Virginia Public Records

Washington Public Records

Wisconsin Public Records



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