Infomaniac: public records

Updated 10/20/08; all links checked 2/08 (most of florida section), blogs added. 

PUBLIC RECORDS ONLINE

Essential Public Records and Directories

(also see State collections at newspaper sites ; Courts and criminal; More national/international searches; Pay per search public records sources; Public records blogs; Florida public records.)

  • Free Public Records directory (publicrecords.onlinesearches.com): search by type, location.
  • Public Records Databases on the Web $ (www.searchsystems.net) by state, county, city. (Also has available records by country.) Once free, now requires paid registration.
  • NETRonline (www.netronline.com) has links to county clerk, recorder and property appraiser databases (or websites) nationwide.
  • Industry Links from Merlindata (www.merlindata.com/industrylinks.html) Has good comprehensive list of public records links down to states/counties.
  • Virtual Chase(www.virtualchase.com/) has a great guide to finding public records, directories and person locators.
  • BRB Public Record Resouce Finder (www.brbpub.com/pubrecsites.asp) public records resource vendor finds Public Records Sites, Public Records Retrievers, lots more. Note this site has international links. BRB also provides a subscription service with much more detail, The Public Record Research System-Web (PRRS-Web) $.
  • Free Public Records Finder (www.freeprf.com) this one's new. Includes a good list of vital statistics search sources, including marriages.
  • Virtual Gumshoe's Free Public Records Directory.  Good lists under lots of different categories, great marriage and divorce database list.
  • Journalists' Toolbox: Public Records from American Press Institute.
  • Pretrieve (www.pretrieve.com): gives you name/location info, but info on what records are available no longer free, directs you to IntelUS.
  • ZabaSearch (www.zabasearch.com): free national people finder with links to complete background checks (fee).
  • MelissaData (www.melissadata.com/) has people finder lookups as well as address information, lots of info by ZIP code.
  • PIPL (www.pipl.com): search engine for people, finds some public records as well as other links (address, phone, email, blogs, news, networking sites).
  • Lexis ONE search of state public records, by subscription.
  • Property Appraiser Databases (www.people.virginia.edu/~dev-pros/Realestate.html)
  • Links to state corporation and charities databases: statelocalgov.net; SearchSystems $; or use directories above to find by state.
  • Everyblock (http://www.everyblock.com/) has localized data down to block level, starting with Chicago, LA and NYC, will expand.
  • Inmate Locator (www.corrections.com/links/show/20) links to searchable databases of offenders in several states.
  • Jail.org has links to criminal/inmate searches nationwide. Not all links lead to searches, though, some just link to county jail sites.
  • Guidestar (www.guidestar.org) charity search with images of 990 IRS forms (registration; subscription for historical reports). Guidestar UK.
  • Nonprofit Salary Search (www.eri-nonprofit-salaries.com) from Economic Research Institute, finds IRS form 990s (includes historical). Or search for salary info from SEC and IRS filings.
  • The Foundation Center (foundationcenter.org/findfunders/990finder/) also has a nonprofit search. Also:
  • Noza.com, 'world's largest database of charitable gifts; IRS Charities and NonProfits Search (listing only).
  • Landings (www.landings.com) search pilots, planes. (Look for Databases link.)
  • FAA Aircraft Registration Search (registry.faa.gov/arquery.htm) from FAA. Updated daily.
  • Canadian civil aircraft registration

  • Campaign Contribution Searches:
  • Statewide collections:

  • State Agency Databases American Library Assn. Wiki collecting links.

  • (Online newspaper public records databases, by state:) (Some contributions to this list came from MaryJo at Pioneer Planet.)
  • Courts and Criminal
  •  Search Systems Free Criminal Records Search Guide. Guide to what's legally available in criminal records, and links to Search Systems' Directpass and Premium criminal searches (subscription required).
  • Criminal Searches offers free searches of court and inmate databases from available public records nationwide. Not all records will be included.
  • VINElink (www.vinelink.com) This site from the Baron Foundation (combating domestic violence) makes online searches available from state and county records. Usually includes inmate records from most counties, and state Corrections data.
  • Natl Center for State Courts (www.ncsconline.org/) links to courts online, including federal and other countries.
  • LLRX Court Rules, Forms and Dockets (www.llrx.com/courtrules/) Click on Dockets to get local online court searches.
  • PACER U.S. Courts National Index $ (pacer.uspci.uscourts.gov/) Search all federal bankruptcy, civil and criminal courts and get statistics; subscription.
  • PACER Web links (pacer.psc.uscourts.gov/cgi-bin/links.pl) Links to all US Courts available for searching on the Web, including U.S. District Courts and Bankruptcy Courts. Need subscription to access courts.
  • Justia: Dockets (dockets.justia.com/) offers free search of federal courts dockets starting in Jan. 2006. (You'll need PACER for docket list or documents.)
  • Public Library of Law: Case search
  • AltLaw: fulltext searches of U.S. Supreme and Circuit Appeals Courts case reports from Columbia Law School.
  • Free Bankruptcy Search from Courthouse Direct ; (you'll still have to pay for dockets or documents, here or from PACER).
  • Legal Dockets Online $ (www.legaldockets.com/) subscription site, searches court dockets, rulings, and inmate databases. Has recently added property records, liens and recorded docs.
  • CANLII (Canadian Legal Information Institute) searches Canadian courts on federal and provincial levels.
  • Bureau of Prisons Inmate Locator (www.bop.gov) all federal inmates 1982-present.
  • Jail.org has links to criminal/inmate searches nationwide. Not all links lead to searches, though, some just link to county jail sites.
  • PoliceReports.US has reports from some police agencies nationwide.

  • Criminal Records by State:

  • Alaska trial court name index database for criminal and civil courts. (new address).
  • Arizona inmates search; Arizona courts public access 153 of 180 counties.
  • Arizona Theft Database public access database on stolen vehicle information. Searchby license plate number or VIN.
  • State of Arkansas Online Criminal Background Check System, $22 per request.
  • California Appellate Courts searchable case information.
  • Inmate Information Center, Los Angeles County from county sheriff's office.
  • Colorado Inmate Locator System
  • Colorado criminal histories from Colorado Bureau of Investigation, $6.85 per search.
  • CoCourts, search most county courts (subscription).
  • Connecticut Civil/& Family case search.
  • Connecticut inmate information.
  • Connecticut case lookup includes pending cases, bond information and including motor vehicle cases, housing and small claims.
  • D.C. court dockets.
  • Florida records (separate section includes state, county, city searches)
  • Georgia Dept of Corrections Offenders search, Most Wanted, sex offenders, and inmate population statistics. For Offenders you can choose currently incarcerated or any offenders current and past. Record contains criminal history, and photo.
  • Georgia Parolee Database
  • Idaho Offender search from state Dept. of Corrections.
  • Idaho Supreme Court Data Depository searches cases in all 44 counties, back to 1995. 
  • Illinois Inmate Search from Dept. of Corrections.
  • Indiana limited criminal history search by subscription $15 or credit card $16.50.
  • Iowa Courts Online lookup of civil, criminal and traffic cases from all 99 counties.
  • Kansas Dept of Corrections KASPAR search (inmates); Kansas postrelease/supervision searches released inmates, probation.
  • Kentucky Offender/Inmates search.
  • Maryland Judiciary Case search finds traffic, criminal and civil cases from state District and
    Circuit courts
    .
  • Michigan Offender search from state dept of corrections.
  • Michigan ICHAT: The Internet Criminal History Access Tool, criminal records searches  $10.
  • Minnesota public criminal history search.
  • State of Minnesota Offender locator
  • Minnesota Trial Court Records Public Access Statewide criminal, civil, family, probate, judgements, and calendar.
  • Mississippi parolees; Mississippi inmates
  • Missouri Casenet Civil, criminal, probate and traffic from several counties, and appellate decisions. Name search.
  • Montana Correctional Offender Network database of convicted felons in Montana.
  • Montana Criminal Record check, $11.50 per search.
  • Nebraska inmate lookup
  • Nebraska Court Searches ($15).
  • New Hampshire inmate locator
  • New Mexico State Judiciary Case Lookup search all state district and magistrate courts.
  • New Mexico Inmate search
  • New York State E-Courts has links to search civil, criminal, housing, family courts statewide and local.
  • North Carolina Business Court has opinions online.
  • North Carolina Court Records search civil, criminal, driving records, fees not posted. Also includes a skip trace search for $25.
  • North Carolina Offenders from Dept. of Corrections, search all inmates back to 1985 plus releases and escapees.
  • North Carolina District and Superior Court Query
  • North Carolina Impaired Driver Query
  • North Dakota Courts search searches district courts and some municipal courts for civil, criminal and traffic cases.
  • Search Ohio Offender Records has current and recently relased inmates in the state corrections system.
  • Oklahoma State Courts: case search not all counties included.
  • Pennsylvania Unified Judicial System provided dockets in all courts.
  • Pennsylvania Inmate Locator
  • Pennsylvania criminal history (PATCH) system (new address) Cost: $10.
  • Rhode Island Adult Criminal Information Database
  • South Carolina Law Enforcement Division has statewide criminal checks for $25.
  • Charleston County, SC Clerk of Courts has free access of civil and criminal court records.
  • Tennessee Felony Offender Lookup from state Dept of Corrections.
  • Tennessee's Out-of-State Parole and Probation Supervision Registry search a name and get criminal record info on people living in TN who are on probation/parole from other states.
  • Texas Department of Public Safety several lists and searches here, including a criminal history search. Must register or purchase credits for access to criminal history database.
  • Vermont court records online (most courts; sign up for $12.50 gives you 5 lookups).
  • Virginia Dept of Corrections has and absconders, escapees; separate inmate search .
  • Virginia Circuit Courts case information .
  • Washington Criminal History database $10 with credit card.
  • Washington JIS-link, access to court dockets.  Pay service, with more detail than:
  • Washington Courts, search by case number, name, get case summary, docket. Free.
  • Wisconsin Criminal History records check
  • Wisconsin Circuit Courts Access criminal, traffic, forfeiture, family, and civil case information and judgments in circuit courts for most (but not all) Wisconsin counties. Other Wisconsin court cases.
  •  
  • For more, try the public records directories above, or Virtual Gumshoe's list of criminal records online.
  • Miscellaneous National/International Searches and Public Records Info
    Find where/when Social Security Number was issued (from Searchbug). Or try SSN Watch, from Carnegie-Mellon.
  • Social Security Death Index (www.ancestry.com/ssdi/advanced.htm) Searchable database of death filings for Social Security benefits, from Ancestry.com.
  • Social Security Death Index (ssdi.genealogy.rootsweb.com) from RootsWeb.
  • Searching the Social Security Death Index (SSDI) in One Step
  • SSN Locator Search (www.usrecordsearch.com/ssn.htm) Match number prefix to states.
  • Clark County, NV did your target get married in Las Vegas? Lots do. Also has business licenses, official documents. Click on Online Services.
  • Idaho Driver License status
  • Marriage/Divorce databases: list from Virtual Gumshoe.
  • Oklahoma county clerk databases: search recording indexes of 28 counties at once.
  • Florida county clerk databases (recording indexes).  Most, but not all counties.
  • Vessel Documentation search for a documented ship or boat from the US Coast Guard's vessel database by name of ship.
  • Landings Aviation Databases (www.landings.com): Click on Databases; include Pilot licenses (Note after 1998 pilots can opt out of public Airmen's Registry database!); Aircraft registrations including several other countries. Also: accidents, incidents and service difficulty reports and accidents.
  • Canadian civil aircraft registration
  • Guidestar (www.guidestar.org) charities database with images of IRS 990 filings.
  • Employer Sanction Database (www.cis.org/sanctions search for companies sanctioned for hiring illegal aliens.
  • Cases against Doctors from DEA/Dept of Justice.
  • Mail Drop Search Form, from student financial aid website, identifies addresses that may be sources of non-legitimate solicitations.
  • Where to Write for Vital Records, from CDC; ; from Vitalrec.com.
  • Farm Subsidy Databasefrom Environmental Working Group.

  • UK Land Register (www.landregisteronline.gov.uk) search property records. Covers England and Wales.
  • Proviser (www.proviser.com) provides Real estate records in the UK.
  • 192.com (www.192.com)UK people finder, searches directories and voter rolls. This now requires registration and small payment.
  • Database of UK Registered Charities (www.charitycommission.gov.uk)
  • Virgin Islands Recorder of Deeds Free index search covers 1999-present; fee for display.
  • Commercial search sources $$$
  • Reporter's Edge (www.reportersedge.com) people finder search for journalists (subscription).
  • Nexis.com (www.nexis.com) Depending on subscription, has property, jury decisions, judgements, bankruptcy, corporations and UCC filings from almost every state. There are also several states/counties/cities with civil or criminal records. EZ-FIND People Finder incorporates several credit header searches; military personnel search also available. Credit card payment option available.
  • Choicepoint Public Records: Autotrack (www.autotrackxp.com) Very good for complete Florida and Texas records, credit header searches (Faces of the Nation), and some records in other states, including car registrations in 30 states and drivers in 22. Best feature: National profiles (basic or comprehensive) pull together all records on a person and associates by matching addresses, DOBs, etc.
  • KnowX (www.knowx.com) for when you want to.....This vendor offers searches of records including bankruptcies, liens, judgements, corportations, UCC filings, real estate, stock ownership, boats and planes..and more. Costs are per record (searching is free) and fairly reasonable. Now a Choicepoint company.
  • Merlin Information Services (www.merlindata.com) Has a national flat fee service for a reasonable cost, including credit headers, pilots, planes, death records, property, liens, judgements and bankruptcies. Also separate credit header searches with full SSNs.
  • Accurint (www.accurint.com) people finder/skip trace, UCC and real estate, Florida driver licenses, now some other states. Have also added some motor vehicle records, bankruptcies, liens. Profiles which find associates, family members also available. Low cost.
  • Axiom Insight has replaced the old FlatRateInfo database.
  • SearchSystems the subscription public records directory also has searches by state or county, account required.
  • Memphis Daily News (www.memphisdailynews.com) Memphis and Nashville public records . Their Rapsheets database no longer exists.
  • Backgroundchecks.com (www.backgroundchecks.com) Has national records searches and searches by state.
  • Legal Dockets Online $ (www.legaldockets.com/) subscription site, searches court dockets, rulings, and inmate databases. Has recently added property records, liens and recorded docs.

    Public Records Blogs

  • PI Buzz
  • Public Records Directory Blog
  • PRB's Public Records Blog
  • State Sunshine and Open Records .
  • RCFP Blog; RCFP Sidebar.
  • News Reporting and Public Records.
  • Open Government Blog.
  • Virtual Gumshoe blog
  • Skipease People Search, Web Search
    Social Networks & Public Record News
    .
  • Finding People (Marcus Zillman)
  • Pogo was Right (privacy news).
  • Public Records Guy.
  • Florida Databases:

    Court links have been updated. Since I'm no longer in, or helping cover, Florida, I will probably not be keeping the rest up (although I am checking for corrections). Try the public records directories at top of this page to find other records, especially county records.)


    Criminal/Courts (This section updated 2/28/08)


  • Florida FDLE Background Checks Online 24 hr/7 day instant access to criminal record. $23, by credit card.
  • Florida Corrections Offender Network searches of Florida inmates, recent releases, probationers, fugitives, and escapees.
  • Florida District Court of Appeals docket search.

  • Vinelink: Has Florida statewide search, and Palm Beach County separatly.
  • Search 20th Circuit Criminal Records . Includes Hendry, Collier, Lee, Glades and Charlotte Counties. Use ID: guest, and password: guest.
  • Alachua County Records online from 1999. Has civil search, recording index.
  • Brevard County Clerk of Courts search civil, criminal, traffic cases since 1999.
  • Broward County. Civil, criminal, probate and traffic cases. (New address 5/02).
  • Broward Arrest Records search for arrest records of all current inmates, from BSO Website; Broward civil Service of Process records search to find records of processes served. From BSO; BSO News Releases arrest, etc. information posted immediately online (new addresses 5/02);
  • Escambia County Clerk of Courts court records search is missing.
  • Highlands County Clerk of Courts civil searches since 1991 online.
  • Hillsborough County Arrest records; Who's in Jail in Hillsborough County? two searches from Hillsborough Sheriff's Dept.
  • Hillsborough County, FL court dockets; recording index and high-profile cases here.
  • Lee County Court Records .
  • Leon County civil, criminal, traffic, and other violations.
  • Manatee County Clerk of Courts has search of civil, criminal, traffic records.
  • Marion County Clerk of Courts Has searches of civil, criminal, probate, traffic, and public records.
  • Miami-Dade County Civil Court Search detail is available from 1984 on, but records go back to 1970 with partial detail. Images will not be available but they provide info on ordering.
  • Miami-Dade Criminal and Civil Infractions searches.
  • Miami-Dade Corrections: inmate search, includes photos.
  • (Miami Dade) Coral Gables, FL Police: Searches: Search incidents, arrests, citations, and crash reports, starting Jan '06.
  • Monroe County Courts search civil, criminal, traffic, probate (cases from 1996-), and Official Records (index from 1995, images from 1996).
  • Orange County, FL. Inmates
  • Court searches, Orange and Osceola Counties.
  • Osceola County civil, criminal, and traffic, case info and dockets.
  • Palm Beach civil and criminal court search.
  • Palm Beach Sheriff's Office Booking Blotter searchable by name.
  • Pinellas County records searches from Clerk of Courts, includes criminal, civil.
  • Pinellas County, FL Court searches: login as 'guest' for free access.
  • Polk County inmates and active warrant search .
  • Polk County Clerk: civil, deeds, public records.
  • Sarasota County civil courts; Criminal courts .
  • Seminole County Sheriff, has lists of felons, transients, sex offenders, etc.
  • Volusia County Court records search.

  • Miscellaneous:


  • Florida County Recording Indexes
  • My Florida Counties Florida county clerks' page has a unified search of all Florida counties (not complete yet but has most counties now).
  • Alachua County (Gainesville) from 1976. Images on recent filings.
  • Bay County (Panama City/Panhandle) from 1987, no images.
  • Brevard County from 1995, index only.
  • Broward County (index back to 1978, scans back to 1998)
  • Charlotte County images (not printable), back to 1977. Court searches available from Clerk of Courts for subscription.
  • Clay County with images, from 1983.
  • Escambia County> among menu items: recording index, back to 1982, some images.
  • Gadsden Official Records from 1985, no images.
  • Highlands County from 1983.
  • Lee County (Ft. Meyers) includes images.
  • Leon County (Tallahassee) Has images. Civil and Criminal filings are available here too.
  • Levy County index, from 1983; also has historical marriages.
  • Manatee County (Bradenton)has images, records back to 1979. Has plats, traffic and civil searches too.
  • Marion County back to 1991; images available.
  • Martin County back to at least 1986; some images available.
  • Miami Dade County index, most images available.
  • Monroe County Official Records index back to 1995, images from 1996 on.
  • Nassau County (Amelia Island, Fernandina Beach) index from 1983.
  • Orange County back to 1955; index only, no images.
  • Osceola County from 1986-, no images.
  • Palm Beach County now has images back to 1993.
  • Polk County with images, since 1990.
  • Sarasota County has images.
  • Seminole County from 1983.
  • Suwannee County
  • Volusia County documents from 1988-, images from 1996-.
  • Walton County (DeFuniak Springs, beaches - Seaside) from 1976; has images.

  • PROPERTY APPRAISER DATABASES:
  • Bradford County (Starke)
  • Brevard County
  • Broward County
  • Charlotte County/Punta Gorda
  • Citrus County
  • Collier County
  • City of Jacksonville (Duval County)
  • Escambia County (Pensacola)
  • Hillsboro County (Tampa)
  • Indian River County
  • Lee County(Ft. Myers)
  • Leon County (Tallahassee)
  • Manatee County (Bradenton)
  • Marion County (Ocala)
  • Martin County (Stuart)
  • Miami-Dade County new application has mapping/aerials and tax information.
  • Monroe County (Florida Keys) has tax info only.
  • Okaloosa County (Ft. Walton Beach/Panhandle)
  • Orange County (Orlando)
  • Osceola County
  • Palm Beach County
  • Pasco County
  • Pinellas County (St. Petersburg)(no name search)
  • Polk County
  • St. John's County (St. Augustine)
  • St. Lucie County (Ft. Pierce)
  • Santa Rosa County
  • Sarasota County
  • Seminole County
  • Volusia County (Daytona) name search now available.

  • Business, Charities, Professions (This section updated 3/1/08)

  • Florida Division of Corporations (www.sunbiz.org) Search for a corporation, federal tax liens, or fictitious name. Images of filings available; also daily filing downloads.
  • Florida Secured Transaction Registry: UCC Filings search (www.floridaucc.com) images also available.
  • Florida Licensee Search now includes alcohol & tobacco, hospitality licenses, occupational licenses, condo associations, yacht brokers, lots more.
  • Health Care Facility Locator at Floridahealthfinder.gov (hospitals, nursing homes, etc.
  • Database of Active Economic Crime Investigations from Fla. Atty General.
  • Department of Management Services lease database state-owned property and commercial leases.
  • Florida Gift Givers' Guide (http://app1.800helpfla.com/giftgiversguide/)financial records of organizations soliciting charitable contributions in Florida.
  • Department of Business and Professional Regulation (fcn.state.fl.us/dbpr) has license searches, see direct link above.
  • Medical Professions Search (http://www.doh.state.fl.us/mqa/Profiling/index.html) Professional licenses in health professions, from Fla. Health Dept.
  • Broward County Business Tax Information Database
  • Monroe County business tax search
  • Palm Beach County business tax search
  • Florida Division of Licensing private investigators, security agents; Individual search.
  • Florida Board of Professional Engineers (www.fbpe.org/) license search now at MyFloridaLicense.
  • Notary Public Access System Search for a Florida licensed notary public.
  • Insurance Agent /Adjuster License Search from Florida Dept of Financial Services.
  • Florida Bar: Find a lawyer .
  • Workers Comp Databases (http://www.fldfs.com/wc/databases.html) Downloadable databases of providers, claims, compliance, now at Dept of Financial Services.

  • Florida Department of Insurance (www.doi.state.fl.us) has malpractice claims database.
  • Professional Liability Closed Claims from Dept of Financial Services.
  • Florida Office of Insurance Regulation: Company Search.
  • Florida Campaign Finance Database.

  • Marriages, etc. (This section updated 3/1/08)

  • Alachua County marriage records from 1837-1973.
  • Brevard County marriage records has searches of historical and nearly current licenses.
  • Escambia County marriage records, 1996-current.
  • Gadsden County.
  • Hernando County (up to 2002).
  • Lake County, from 2000-
  • Miami-Dade County marriage records, back to 2005.
  • Okaloosa County marriage records.
  • Sarasota County marriages.
  • Other counties here.