Florida Criminal and Public Records
State of Florida Most Updated Online Public and Criminal Records Portal

The state of Florida and its 67 counties individually maintain and issue public records, certificates, licenses and information for verification purposes. Public entities which provide many of the requested records are clerks and online resources from individual departments operating separately. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement electronic system a self-service application returns found criminal records instantly based on basic information such as the name and date of birth. Other departments under local departments such as court clerks, deed recorders and more maintain publicly accessible sites to their data. Florida Courts service online requests for state, county, all 20 circuit courts, and smaller case files giving access to divorce filings, judgments, liens, litigant name search and more. The state of Florida has made great improvements to electronic record access assisting individual departments to serve the public efficiently.

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Q/A

Public Records Information

Florida is the 4th most populous state in the U.S. with a population of nearly 19 million people. The capital of the state is Tallahassee. The leading industry is tourism as Florida is one of the most popular destinations in the world. Other industries in Florida are exports through it’s ports to South American regions, space programs, and agriculture. Florida has 67 counties and over 400 cities, municipalities and towns. The largest cities in the state are Jacksonville, Miami, Tampa, St. Petersburg and Orlando.

Background of criminal histories can be obtained from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), Division of Criminal Justice Information Services online for requests by the general public as well as specific employee screening purposes. Local police stations provide separate reports of incidents, arrests and persons in custody. The Miami division of the FBI conducts federal Identity History Summary searches for limited purposes. Instant searches are offered for inmates in custody of the state correctional facilities, wanted offenders and people finders.

Individuals and companies in Florida request records for various personal and business purposes. Residents of Florida request records such as birth certificates to establish identity when applying for a passport. Divorce certificates and decrees are recorded and copies are provided by the clerk’s office and the Florida department of health.

Official certificates are available from the Bureau of Vital Statistics Records Section, see the eligibility guidelines and the various methods for ordering. Newspaper searches public local obituaries, current events of incidents and area listings. There are fourteen different databases listed for the state of Florida to help locate individuals using people finders in public directories found in both government agencies and private entities.

Court Records Information

The Florida county courts have jurisdiction to hear cases involving torts, contracts, real property rights ($5,001/$15,000), other miscellaneous civil matters, exclusive jurisdiction to hear small claims matters involving an amount in controversy of $0-$5,000), exclusive jurisdiction to hear cases involving misdemeanors, DWI or DUI, and other miscellaneous criminal matters. Its exclusive jurisdiction further extends to traffic or other violations, except parking violations (which are handled administratively). County level courts hold venue to preliminary hearings.

Florida circuit courts hear tort matters, contract matters, real property rights matters ($15,001/no maximum), and other miscellaneous civil matters, have exclusive jurisdiction to hear cases involving mental health, estate, and civil appeals matters, exclusive jurisdiction over domestic relations matters, felony matters, and criminal appeals matters, will also hear juvenile matters, and hold venue to preliminary hearings.

Florida district courts of appeal hear (have "mandatory jurisdiction") over cases involving certain civil matters, noncapital criminal matters, administrative agency matters, juvenile matters, original proceeding matters, and interlocutory decision matters. District courts have discretion to hear (have "discretionary jurisdiction") cases involving various other civil matters, noncapital criminal matters, juvenile matters, original proceedings, and interlocutory decision cases. Supreme court has mandatory jurisdiction to hear cases involving certain civil matters, capital criminal matters, criminal matters, administrative agency matters, juvenile matters, disciplinary matters, and advisory opinion matters. Its discretionary jurisdiction extends to other various civil matters, noncapital criminal matters, administrative agency matters, juvenile matters, advisory opinions, original proceedings, and interlocutory decision matters.

 

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