Public Records Information
The state of Arkansas is contained in 52,068 square miles and is populated by almost 3 million people. Arkansas was admitted to the union on June 15, 1836. The capital and largest city in Arkansas is Little Rock. There are seventy-five counties in Arkansas, Pulaski County being the largest and most populated. Arkansas is represented in the United States Congress by 2 senators and 4 members in the House of Representatives. The food products industry is the largest source of employment in Arkansas, followed closely by lumber and wood products. Arkansas is also one of the largest producers of cotton, rice and soybeans.
Through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), Arkansas is bound to make certain documents available to the public. This means the public has access to state agency rules and methods of operation, as well as the documents and information those agencies maintain. Meetings of state agencies and organizations typically fall under the Freedom of Information Act as well, allowing the public to view meeting minutes which help provide transparency as to the operation of the various state agencies.
Arkansas criminal records are maintained and provided through the Arkansas State Police. An individual representing an employer or a professional licensing board may access an online request for a criminal history check. Individuals outside of the above listed categories who wish to obtain a criminal history of an individual, must submit a manual record request in person or by mail to the Arkansas State Police Identification Bureau. This request will result in a record of felony and misdemeanor convictions in Arkansas.
Court Records Information
The Arkansas city courts hear cases involving contracts and real property rights ($0/$300). The city courts also hear cases involving misdemeanors. The city courts also include preliminary hearings. The Arkansas district courts are the state's trial courts with jurisdiction to hear cases involving contracts and personal property rights ($0/$5,000).
The district courts also have jurisdiction over small claims, which include cases where the amount in dispute ranges from $0 to $5,000. As with the city courts, the district courts have jurisdiction to hear cases involving misdemeanors and hear preliminary proceedings. The Arkansas circuit courts have jurisdiction to hear cases involving tort, contract, real property rights ($100/no maximum), and miscellaneous civil cases.
The Arkansas circuit courts have exclusive jurisdiction to hear cases involving estate, mental health, and civil appeals. Furthermore, the circuit courts have exclusive jurisdiction over domestic relations matters. The circuit courts have hear cases involving misdemeanor. Its exclusive jurisdiction also extends to felonies, and criminal appeals matters. Also, exclusive juvenile jurisdiction.
The Arkansas court of appeals have mandatory jurisdiction in civil, noncapital criminal, administrative agency, juvenile, interlocutory decision cases. It has no discretionary jurisdiction. The Arkansas supreme court has mandatory jurisdiction in civil, capital criminal, criminal, administrative agency, lawyer disciplinary, certified questions from federal courts, original proceeding, interlocutory decision cases. Its jurisdiction is discretionary regarding civil, noncapital criminal, administrative agency cases.
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