Privacy/Public Access to Court Records

State Links

Alabama

Alabama Rules of Judicial Administration 33 Access to electronically stored data, electronic-document images, electronic datastreams, and electronic databases maintained by the Administrative Office of Courts. Last updated October 2008.

A. Authority of the Administrative Director of Courts

B. Definitions.

C. Access to electronic data.

D. Access to court records.

E. Exclusive rights of AOC in electronic data.

F. Prohibition on resale of electronic data.

G. Authorized agreements.

H. Requests for compilation and release of electronic data or information derived from electronic databases.

Alaska

Alaska Rules of Administration 37.5 Access to Court Records.

(a) Scope and Purpose.
(b) Who Has Access to Court Records.
(c) Definitions.
(d) General Access Rule.
(e) Court Records Excluded from Public Access.
(f) Obtaining Access to Public Court Records.

Alaska Rules of Administration 37.6 Prohibiting Access to Public Case Records.

(a) Limiting Access.
(b) Standard.
(c) Least Restrictive Alternative.
(d) Procedure.

Alaska Rules of Administration 37.7 Obtaining Access to Non-Public Court Records.

(a) Allowing Access to Non-Public Records.
(b) Procedure.

Alaska Rules of Administration 37.8 Electronic Case Information.

(a) Availability.
(b) Bulk Distribution of Electronic Case Information.
(c) Distribution of Compiled Information.
(d) Fees.

Arizona

Rules of the Supreme Court of Arizona 123 Access to the Judicial Records of the State of Arizona. Amended January 1, 2016.

(a) Authority and Scope of Rule. Pursuant to the administrative powers vested in the supreme

(b) Definitions.

(c) General Provisions.

(d) Access to Case Records.

(e) Access to Administrative Records.

(f) Access to Records in Paper Medium.

(g) Remote Electronic Access to Case Records.

(h) Access to Audiotape, Videotape, Microfilm, Computer or Electronic Based Records.

(i) Inspection and Photocopying.

(j) Bulk or Compiled Data Dissemination in Bulk.

Arkansas

Arkansas Supreme Court Administrative Order 19 Access to Court Records

Section I. Authority, Scope, and Purpose.

Section II. Who Has Access Under This Order.

Section III. Definitions.

Section IV. General Access Rule.

Section IX. When Court Records May Be Accessed.

Section V. Remote Access.

Section VI. Bulk Distribution and Compiled Information.

Section VII. Court Records Excluded From Public Access.

Section VIII. Obtaining Access to Information Excluded from Public Access.

Section X. Contracts With Vendors Providing Information Technology Services Regarding Court Records.

Section XI. Violation of Order Not Basis for Liability.

California

California Rules of Court Title 2, Division 4. Trial Court Rules, Court Records

Chapter 1. General Provisions

Rule 2.400. Court records

Chapter 2. Public Access to Electronic Trial Court Records

Rule 2.500. Statement of purpose

Rule 2.501. Application and scope

Rule 2.502. Definitions

Rule 2.503. Public access

Rule 2.504. Limitations and conditions

Rule 2.505. Contracts with vendors

Rule 2.506. Fees for electronic access

Rule 2.507. Electronic access to court calendars, indexes, and registers of actions

Chapter 3. Sealed Records

Rule 2.550. Sealed records

Rule 2.551. Procedures for filing records under seal

Chapter 4. Records in False Claims Act Cases

Rule 2.570. Filing False Claims Act records under seal

Rule 2.571. Procedures for filing records under seal in a False Claims Act case

Rule 2.572. Ex parte application for an extension of time

Rule 2.573. Unsealing of records and management of False Claims Act cases

Colorado

Chief Justice Directive 05-01 Directive Concerning Access to Court Records and Public Access To Court Records Amended October 18, 2016.

Purpose

Access By Whom

General Provisions and Definitions

Access To Court Records

Timeliness Of Access

Fees

Obligation Of Vendors

Obligation Of The Court To Inform And Educate

Process To Correct Inaccurate Information

Connecticut

Access Guidelines To Court Records

Exhibits

Family Matters

Frequently Asked Questions

Juror Information

Services Available - Records Searches, Statistics, Programs & Policies, specific case information

Copy Charges

Delaware

Operating Procedures for the Delaware Judicial Branch. Chapter VII. Media Coverage, Public Access and Records Management

2. Public Access to Court Administrative and Case Records

3. Online Judicial Opinions and Case Records

a. Public Records

b. Exceptions

Note: prior Administrative Directives 162 and 167 regarding public access and privacy were rescinded in August 2015 in favor of the new, consolidated Operating Procedures. See Administrative Directive 187.

Federal Courts

Judiciary Privacy Policy.   March 2008 version of the Judicial Conference Policy on Privacy and Public Access to Electronic Case Files in the Federal Courts.

Florida

Florida Rules of Judicial Administration 2.420 Public Access to and Protection of Judicial Branch Records

(a) Scope and Purpose

(b) Definitions.

(c) Confidential and Exempt Records.

(d) Procedures for Determining Confidentiality of Court Records.

(e) Request to Determine Confidentiality of Trial Court Records in Noncriminal Cases..

(f) Request to Determine Confidentiality of Court Records in Criminal Cases..

(g) Request to Determine Confidentiality of Appellate Court Records in Noncriminal Cases..

(h) Oral Motions to Determine Confidentiality of Trial Court Records..

(i) Sanctions.

(j) Procedure for Obtaining Access to Confidential Court Records.

(k) Procedure for Service on Victims and Affected Non-parties and When Addresses Are Confidential.

(l) Denial of Access Request for Administrative Records.

(m) Procedure for Public Access to Judicial Branch Records.

Florida Rules of Judicial Administration 2.425 Minimization of the Filing of Sensitive Information

(a) Limitation for Court Filings.

(b) Exceptions.

(c) Remedies.

(d) Motions Not Restricted.

(e) Application.

Georgia

No apparent state-level privacy policy for court records

Hawaii

No apparent state-level privacy policy for court records

Idaho

Idaho Court Administrative Rule 32 Records of The Judicial Department - Examination and Copying - Exemption From and Limitations on Disclosure.

(a) Statement of policy.

(b) Definitions.

(c) Applications.

(d) Access to Court Records, Examination and Copying.

(e) Bulk distribution.

(f) Compiled Information.

(g) Court records exempt from disclosure.

(h) Permissive Release of Judicial Decision in Exempted Categories.

(i) Other Prohibitions or Limitations on Disclosure and Motions Regarding the Sealing of Records.

(j) Request for Records.

Illinois

Electronic Access Policy for Circuit Court Records of the Illinois Courts. Updated 2004.

Section 1.00 - Purpose Of Electronic Access Policy

Section 2.00 - Who Has Access Under This Electronic Access Policy

Section 3.00 - Definitions

Section 4.00 - Applicability Of Electronic Access Policy

Section 5.00 - When Electronic Court Records May Be Accessed

Section 6.00 - Fees For Access

Section 7.00 - Obligations Of Vendors Providing Information Technology Support To A Court To Maintain Court Records

Section 8.00 - Notice And Education Regarding Electronic Access Policy

Illinois Supreme Court Rule 138 Personal Identity Information

(a) Applicability.

(b) Personal identity information [defined]

(c) A redacted filing of personal identity information for the public record is permissible and shall only include...

(d) The information provided with the “Notice of Confidential Information Within Court Filing” shall be available...

(e) Neither the court nor the clerk is required to review documents or exhibits for compliance with this rule....

(f) [Filing of a document or exhibit containing personal identity information, motions]

(g) This rule does not require any clerk or judicial officer to redact personal identity information from the court record except as provided in this rule.

Indiana

Indiana Court Administrative Rule 9 Access to Court Records

(A) Scope and Purposes.

(B) Who Has Access Under This Rule.

(C) Definitions. For purpose of this rule:

(D) General Access Rule.

(E) Remote Access and Fees.

(F) Bulk Distribution and Compiled Information.

(G) Excluding Court Records From Public Access.

(H) When Court Records May Be Accessed.

(I) Contracts With Vendors Providing Information Technology Services Regarding Court Records.

(J) Immunity for Disclosure of Protected Information.

Iowa

Iowa Rules of Civil Procedure 1.422 Protected information

It is the responsibility of counsel and the parties to ensure that protected information is omitted or redacted from documents.

(1) Omission or redaction required.

(2) Omission or redaction allowed.

Kansas

Kansas Supreme Court Rule 196 Public Access to District Court Electronic Case Records

(a) Definitions.

(b) Scope.

(c) Persons Who Have Access.

(d) Access Provisions and Restrictions.

(e) Compiled Information and Bulk Distribution.

(f) Correction of Electronic Case Records.

(g) Contracts With Vendors Providing Information Technology Services Regarding Public Access Statewide to Electronic Case Records.

(h) Immunity for Disclosure of Information.

Kentucky

No apparent state-level privacy policy for court records

Louisiana

No apparent state-level privacy policy for court records

Maine

Maine Supreme Judicial Court Administrative Order JB-05-20 (A. 1-15) Public Information and Confidentiality

I. Scope And Purpose

II. Definitions

III. Records Maintained At Or By Courts

IV. Records Maintained At Or By The Administrative Office Of The Courts Or The Office Of Information Technology

V. Provision Of Information To Interpreters

VI. Dissemination Of Other Information

VII. Questions Related To This Administrative Order

Maryland

Maryland Rules Title 16, Chapter 1000. Courts, Judges and Attorneys, Access to Court Records

Rule 16-1001. Definitions

Rule 16-1002. General policy

Rule 16-1003. Copies

Rule 16-1004. Access to notice, administrative, and business license records

Rule 16-1005. Case records -- Required denial of inspection -- In general

Rule 16-1006. Required denial of inspection -- Certain categories of case records

Rule 16-1007. Required denial of inspection -- Specific information in case records

Rule 16-1008. Conversion of paper records

Rule 16-1008.1. Access to electronic records

Rule 16-1009. Court order denying or permitting inspection of case record

Rule 16-1010. Procedures for compliance

Rule 16-1011. Resolution of disputes by administrative or chief judge

Massachusetts

Michigan

No apparent state-level privacy policy for court records

Minnesota

Minnesota Rules of Access to Records of the Judicial Branch

Rule 1. Scope of Rule

Rule 2. General Policy

Rule 3. Definitions

Rule 4. Accessibility to Case Records

Rule 5. Accessibility to Administrative Records

Rule 6. Vital Statistics Records

Rule 7. Procedures for Requesting Record Access or Case Record Correction

Rule 8. Inspection, Copying, Bulk Distribution and Remote Access

Rule 9. Appeal from Denial of Access

Rule 10. Contracting with Vendors for Information Technology Services

Access to Case Records Table (effective October 29, 2015)

Access to Administrative Records Table (effective July 1, 2015)

Access to Vital Statistics Records Table

Mississippi

Mississippi Supreme Court Statement of Policy Regarding Openness and Availability of Public Records (August 2008)

1. Introduction

2. The Supreme Court and Court of Appeals

3. Supreme Court Clerk’s Office

4. Administrative Office of Courts

5. State Library

6. Mississippi Department of Finance and Administration

7. Record Requests

8. Denial of Access and Appeal

Missouri

Missouri Supreme Court Operating Rule 2 Public Access to Records of the Judicial Department

Rule 2.01. Scope of Rule

Rule 2.02. General Policy

Rule 2.03. Definitions

Rule 2.04. Access to Case Records

Rule 2.05. Access to Personal Information

Rule 2.06. Access to Administrative Records

Rule 2.07. Access to Compiled Information from Court Records

Rule 2.08. Access Procedures

Rule 2.09. Access Denial Reviews

Rule 2.10. Requests for Bulk Distribution of Court Records

Rule 2.11. Fees

Montana

Montana indefinitely suspended its court privacy and public access rules in 2011. See In the Matter of Temporarily Suspending the Rules For Privacy and Public Access to Court Records in Montana.

Nebraska

Nebraska Rules of Court Uniform County Court Rules of Practice and Procedure 6-1464 Protection of personal and financial information in civil court records

Appendix 7 - Personal and financial information in general civil cases

Appendix 8 - Personal and financial information of parties for estates and trusts

Appendix 11 - Personal and financial information for guardianships and conservatorships

Nebraska Rules of Court Uniform District Court Rules of Practice and Procedure 6-1521 Protection of personal and financial information in civil court records

Appendix 3 - Redaction form

Nevada

Nevada Electronic Filing and Conversion Rule 14. Access to electronic documents; confidential information.

(a) Electronic access.

(b) Confidential records.

(c) Identification of confidential documents

(d) Protection of personal information.

(e) Temporary sealing of documents.

Rules Governing Sealing and Redacting Court Records

Rule 1. Nevada Rules for Sealing and Redacting Court Records; purpose, policy, and scope of rules.

Rule 2. Definitions.

Rule 3. Process and grounds for sealing or redacting court records.

Rule 4. Process and grounds for unsealing court records.

Rule 5. Jurisdiction.

Rule 6. Sanctions.

Rule 7. Use of sealed records on appeal.

Rule 8. Effect on other law.

Policy for Handling Filed, Lodged, and Presumptively Confidential Documents

Rule 1. Policy.

Rule 2. Procedures for the clerk’s office.

1. Filed documents.

2. Lodged documents.

3. Subpoenaed documents.

4. Correspondence.

5. Documents to be considered presumptively confidential and non-public.

6. Redaction.

New Hampshire

Guidelines for Public Access to Court Records

I. Introduction.

II. Records Subject to Inspection.

III. Right To Copy.

IV. Timing of Access.

V. Supervision of Access.

VI. Large Scale Access.

VII. Telephone Inquiries.

VIII. Denial of Access.

IX. Access by Litigants.

New Jersey

Rules Governing the Courts of the State of New Jersey Rule 1:38 Public Access to Court Records and Administrative Records.

Rule 1:38-1. Policy

Rule 1:38-2. Definition of Court Records

Rule 1:38-3. Court Records Excluded from Public Access

Rule 1:38-4. Definition of Administrative Records

Rule 1:38-5. Administrative Records Excluded from Public Access

Rule 1:38-6. Intergovernmental Exchanges

Rule 1:38-7. Confidential Personal Identifiers

Rule 1:38-8. Removing from the Court File Documents Improperly Submitted to Court

Rule 1:38-9. Fees

Rule 1:38-10. Determinations; Appeal Process

Rule 1:38-11. Sealing of Court Records

Rule 1:38-12. Unsealing of Court Records

Rule 1:38-13. Records Available Only in the Form Maintained by the Judiciary

Directive 03-11 Procedures for Providing Public Access to Court Records and Administrative Records Pursuant to Rule 1:38. (Supersedes Directive 15-05)

New Mexico

No apparent state-level privacy policy for court records

New York

No apparent state-level privacy policy for court records

North Carolina

No apparent state-level privacy policy for court records

North Dakota

North Dakota Administrative Rule 41 Access to Court Records

Section 1. Purpose.

Section 2. Definitions.

Section 3. General Access Rule.

Section 4. Methods of Access to Court Records.

Section 5. Court Records Excluded From Public Access.

Section 6. Requests to Prohibit Public Access to Information in Court Records or to Obtain Access to Restricted Information.

Section 7. Obligations Of Vendors Providing Information Technology Support To A Court To Maintain Court Records.

Ohio

Rules of Superintendence For the Courts of Ohio Rule 44 Court Records - Definitions

Rules of Superintendence For the Courts of Ohio Rule 45 Court Records - Public access

(A) Presumption of public access

(B) Direct access

(C) Remote access

(D) Omission of personal identifiers prior to submission or filing

(E) Restricting public access to a case document

(F) Obtaining access to a case document that has been granted restricted public access

Rules of Superintendence For the Courts of Ohio Rule 46 Court Records - Bulk distribution

(A) Requests for bulk distribution and new compilations

(B) Contracts with providers of information technology support

Rules of Superintendence For the Courts of Ohio Rule 47 Court Records - Application, remedies, and liability

(A) Application

(B) Denial of public access - remedy

(C) Liability and immunity

(D) Review

Oklahoma

No apparent state-level privacy policy for court records

Oregon

No apparent state-level privacy policy for court records

Pennsylvania

Electronic Case Record Public Access Policy Of The Unified Judicial System Of Pennsylvania

Section 1.00 Definitions

Section 2.00 Statement Of General Policy

Section 3.00 Electronic Case Record Information Excluded From Public Access

Section 3.10 Requests For Bulk Distribution Of Electronic Case Records

Section 3.20 Requests For Electronic Case Record Information From Another Court Or Office

Section 4.00 Responding To A Request For Access To Electronic Case Records

Section 5.00 Fees

Section 6.00 Correcting Data Errors

Section 7.00 Continuous Availability Of Policy

Explanatory Report for the Electronic Case Record Public Access Policy

Magisterial District Courts Official Case Records Policy 

Confidential Information Form

Rhode Island

Rhode Island Judiciary Rules of Practice Governing Public Access to Electronic Case Information

1. Purpose.

2. Application.

3. Definitions.

4. Confidentiality.

5. Access to Case Information

South Carolina

South Carolina Rules of Civil Procedure 41.2 Privacy Protection for Filings

(a) Redaction.

(b) Reference Lists.

(c) Responsibility to Redact.

(d) Limitations on Remote Access to Electronic Files.

(e) Requests to Remove.

South Dakota

Unified Judicial System Court Records Rule

15-15A-1 Purpose of rule of access to court records.

15-15A-2 Who has access to court records under the rule.

15-15A-3 Definition of terms.

15-15A-4 Applicability of rule.

15-15A-5 General access rule.

15-15A-6 Court records that are only publicly available at a court facility.

15-15A-7 Court records excluded from public access.

15-15A-8 Confidential numbers, financial documents, and name of child victim excluded from public access.

15-15A-9 Filing confidential numbers, financial documents, and name of child victim in court record.

15-15A-10 Procedure for requesting access to confidential financial documents.

15-15A-11 Requests for bulk distribution of court records.

15-15A-12 Access to compiled information from court records.

15-15A-13 Requests to prohibit public access to information in court records.

15-15A-14 When court records may be accessed.

15-15A-15 Fees for accessing court records.

Tennessee

No apparent state-level privacy policy for court records

Texas

Texas Rules of Judicial Administration Rule 12 Public Access to Judicial Records

12.1  Policy.

12.2  Definitions.

12.3  Applicability.

12.4  Access to Judicial Records.

12.5  Exemptions from Disclosure.

12.6  Procedures for Obtaining Access to Judicial Records.

12.7  Costs for Copies of Judicial Records; Appeal of Assessment.

12.8  Denial of Access to a Judicial Record.

12.9  Relief from Denial of Access to Judicial Records.

12.10  Sanctions.

Texas Court Open Records Policy

Access to Court Case Records

Access to Judicial Records

Appealing Denial of Access

Utah

Utah Code of Judicial Administration Rules Governing Access to Court Records

Rule 4-202. Purpose.

Rule 4-202.01. Definitions.

Rule 4-202.02. Records classification.

Rule 4-202.03. Records access.

Rule 4-202.04. Request to access a record associated with a case; request to classify a record associated with a case.

Rule 4-202.05. Request to access an administrative record; research; request to classify an administrative record; request to create an index.

Rule 4-202.06. Response to request to access or classify a court record.

Rule 4-202.07. Appeals.

Rule 4-202.08. Fees for records, information, and services.

Rule 4-202.09. Miscellaneous.

Rule 4-205. Security of court records.

Utah Rule of Appellate Procedure 21(g). Non-public information in appellate cases.

Vermont

Vermont Rules for Electronic Filing 10 Access to Electronic Case Files

 

Vermont Rules for Public Access to Court Records

Rule 1. Purpose; Construction

Rule 2. Scope

Rule 3. Definitions

Rule 4. General Policy

Rule 5. Administrative Records

Rule 6. Case Records

Rule 7. Exceptions

Rule 8. Statistical Reports

Virginia

No apparent state-level privacy policy for court records

Washington

Washington State Court Rules General Rule 31 Access to Court Records

(a) Policy and Purpose.

(b) Scope.

(c) Definitions.

(d) Access.

(e) Personal Identifiers Omitted or Redacted from Court Records.

(f) Distribution of Court Records Not Publicly Accessible.

(g) Bulk Distribution of Court Records

(h) Appeals.

(i) Notice.

(j) Access to Juror Information.

(k) Access to Master Jury Source List.

Washington State Court Rules General Rule 31.1 Access to Administrative Records

(a) Policy and Purpose.

(b) Overview of Public Access to Judicial Records.

(c) Procedures for Records Requests.

(d) Review of Records Decision.

(e) Monetary Awards Not Allowed.

(f) Persons Who Are Subjects of Records.

(g) Court and Judicial Agency Rules.

(h) Charging of Fees.

(i) Definitions.

(j) Administrative Records—General Right of Access.

(k) Entities Subject to Rule.

(l) Exemptions.

(m) Chambers Records.

(n) Best Practices.

(o) Effective Date of Rule.

West Virginia

No apparent state-level privacy policy for court records

Wisconsin

Wisconsin Circuit Court Access Oversight Committee Final Report (March 2006).  The full date of birth (DOB) is currently included for criminal cases, but only the month and year are displayed in other case types.

Policy on Disclosure of Public Information Over the Internet.  The Director of State Courts' Office has adopted a Policy on Disclosure of Public Information Over the Internet.

Wyoming

Rules Governing Access to Court Records

1. Scope and purpose of rules.

2. Definitions.

3. General policy.

4. When court records may be accessed.

5. Application procedures.

6. Court records not available for public access.

7. Filing confidential information.

8. Motions to limit public access to information in case record.

9. Motions requesting access to sealed documents in case record.

10. Judicial review.

11. Electronic records.

12. Compiled information.

13. Bulk distribution.

14. Copies.

15. Fees.

16. Vendors.

17. Local rules.

Rules Governing Redactions from Court Records

1. Redacted filings.

2. Protection orders.

3. Exemptions from redaction requirements.

4. Filings made under seal.

5. Protective orders.

5.1. Uniform Redaction Policy in Felony Sexual Assault Cases.

6. Additional unredacted filing under seal.

7. Clerk refusal to file.

8. Transcripts.

9. Rules governing access to court records.