Arkansas Public Records
Arkansas public records are defined as any form of information available in writing, video, or sound that reflect the performance, or lack thereof, of a public office and its employees.
How to Find Arkansas Public Records
Most public records in Arkansas are available for request under the Freedom of Information Act. Upon request issuance, the custodian has three business days to furnish a copy of the requested public record. Fees may apply for duplication and also mailing expenses. However, private sources can also provide access when the records are available.
Are Arkansas Public Records Available Online?
Public records in Arkansas are available online except for those exempted by law. The Arkansas Department of Human Services (DHS) now publishes frequently requested documents online without a FOIA request. If not applicable, you may still submit a FOIA request available at DHS by providing requestor information on the first page and the details of your record request on the second page.
What Records are Not Available in Arkansas?
All types of government information are considered public records in Arkansas and are available to the public.
However, some records like state taxes, adoption records, unpublished judicial drafts, ongoing police investigations, and historical information are exempt from public scrutiny and inspection.
Types of Public Records Available in Arkansas
Arkansas allows you to access the following records as an open records state.
Arkansas Public Criminal Records
You can look up public criminal records in Arkansas online using the Office of the Courts Public CourtConnect. You can search their database using the following information:
- Name (person or a business)
- Case type
- Case information
- Cases filed by date
- Docket filings by date
Police Departments and Sheriffe Office in Arkansas :
Arrest Records and Warrants
The Arkansas CourtConnect website allows you to view active arrest records and warrants in the state. You may also perform a local search through the county offices and sheriffs or use available information from third-party websites.
Inmate and Jail Records
You can use the following details to narrow down your search:
- ADC number
- Name (first and last)
- Offense category
Jails and Prisons in Arkansas :
Arkansas Background Checks
The ACIC does not provide background checks on individuals. However, you may use the Arkansas Criminal History (ARCH) facility to obtain criminal history information if you answer "yes" to any of the following:
- You are mandated by law to perform a background check.
- You have the signed consent of the person you are searching for.
- You are performing a search for personal purposes.
Note that ARCH searches are only available online and can only be viewed and printed. However, remember every search you perform costs $24.00. Another $24.00 fee will apply for every result you view, regardless of the available results.
For certified copies of background checks and criminal history information, you may mail your requests to the Arkansas State Police.
How to Find Sex Offenders in Arkansas
The Arkansas Crime Information Center (ACIC) has a sex offender registry that lets you search offenders by name or area. The registry also contains information on thousands of "non-mappable offenders," which means their addresses are currently not available or cannot be recognized. However, they still belong to the registry of sex offenders in Arkansas.
Arkansas Public Vital Records
The Arkansas Department of Health has a Vital Records Online Service that conveniently allows citizens to request public vital records like birth certificates, death certificates, marriage certificates, and divorce certificates.
According to state law, vital records less than 100 years old are only available to individuals named on the record, their next of kin, or a legal representative. Requesters must provide personal information upon request, including a driver's license number for verification.
Regarding fees, each vital record request will charge $1.85 for identity verification on top of the standard $5.00 processing fee. Depending on the type of vital record, a fee of $10.00 to 12.00 may apply for the first copy. An additional cost of $8.00 to $10.00 applies for every additional copy. There is also a $10.00 to $12.00 search fee, not including the mailing and shipping costs.
Arkansas Court Records
Court records in Arkansas are available through the CourtConnect search portal. You may also find court records in the state using the archives. For court records unavailable online like sealed juvenile records, you can go to the county clerk and make your request in person.
State Court System in Arkansas
The state court system in Arkansas is divided into three levels:
- Appellate courts
- Circuit courts
- District court
The appellate court is the highest level, composed of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals. The circuit courts function as the state's trial courts. Lastly, the district courts handle civil matters, misdemeanor offenses, traffic violations, and violations of local ordinances and state law.
Courts in Arkansas :
The Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration Driver Services maintains the state's driving record information, including civil driving infractions, road accidents, convictions, and previous driving record inquiries.
Following the Federal Privacy Protection Act, driving records in Arkansas are considered confidential but can be released under certain exceptions.
- Requesting a complete driving history record can only be done in person or by mail plus an $8.50 fee.
- For commercial driving records for employment purposes, you may request online for $13.00 or do it by mail or in-person with a fee of $10.00.
- For driving records for insurance purposes, you can request online for $10.00 or by mail or in-person for $8.50.
Civil Driving Infractions
The most common civil driving infractions in Arkansas are the following, arranged from the highest to the lowest count.
- Driving with a suspended license
- Failure to appear in court
- Driving with an expired or no license
- Failure to maintain liability insurance
- Careless or improper driving
- Not using a seatbelt
- Failure to show proof ins
- Driving under influence
Arkansas License Plate Lookup
Unfortunately, license plate information is not available in Arkansas. To look up a license plate, you need to visit the local police or contact the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles for license information.
Arkansas Property and Asset Records Online
The Arkansas County Data is the easiest way to help you find property and asset information online in the state. Property records are managed by the registry of deed offices which are also organized on a county level.
Arkansas Unclaimed Property and Assets
The Arkansas State Auditor is the agency body responsible for reuniting unclaimed properties and assets with their rightful owners or heirs. Anyone can file a claim online as long as you provide proper documentation to prove your ownership or that you are the legal heir of the property you filed a claim for.
Important Government Agencies in Arkansas
Arkansas has the following government agencies to help you find public records in the state.
- Secretary of State
- Governor’s Office
- Legislature Office
- Arkansas Department of Human Services
- Department of Public Safety - Crime Information Center
- Department of Corrections
- State Police
- Department of Finance and Administration - Driver Services
- County Data
- State Auditor
- Arkansas Judiciary
Counties in Arkansas
- Hot Spring
- Little River
- Saint Francis
- Van Buren
List of Content
- How to Find Arkansas Public Records
- What Records are Not Available in Arkansas?
- Types of Public Records Available in Arkansas
- Arkansas License Plate Lookup
- Important Government Agencies in Arkansas