In the past, searching for court records would require making a trip to the local court house. There, you would go into a dark and dusty back room and search through endless boxes and files cabinets. Perhaps, you would fill out forms and a courthouse clerk would search for you. You would wait endlessly until the clerk came back, usually with disappointing news that they came up empty-handed. Searching court records has come a long way with the advance of technology and the internet.
Now, court records are all input into an electronic system. This enables you to perform online searches of court records to pull up what you are seeking. This definitely cuts down on search time and drive time. The electronic system also lowers the risk of errors such as records being filed in the wrong place.
Before you begin to search for online court records, it is best to have a understanding of the court system of the United States, as they are responsible for keeping court records. There are county courts, state supreme courts and the highest of them all, The Supreme Court of the United States. Each court system will have its own records and own policies regarding searching for court records.
Therefore, it is imperative that you have some basic knowledge about where to begin your court record search. Many times you will have the name of the county or state where you should be searching. Other times, you will have to hazard your best guess. In these instances, be prepared for longer search times and many empty results.
You should always start with the county if you know it when perform a court record search. If you do not know the name of the county you may want to do a little more investigative digging before beginning your court record search online.
With the proper background and knowledge you can easily find what you are looking for without spending endless hours down at your local court house.