How to Find Court Records & Cases

By Anne Davis
More and more court records are available online, which makes searching for them relatively easy.

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Locating court cases and records is becoming easier and easier as cities, counties and states begin posting such information online. The process of locating them may take some time, especially if you're unfamiliar with the court's website, but your diligence will likely yield positive results. The higher the court in which a case was tried, the more likely it will be posted in an easy-to-find location.

U.S. Supreme Court

Determine identifying information about the case. This can include the year it was decided by the Supreme Court, the plaintiff or the defendant.

Log on to the U.S. Supreme Court's website at supremecourt.gov.

Click on "Opinions" in the left-hand toolbar.

Scroll down the page and select "Case Citation Finder."

Input either the year the case was decided or either of the parties' names in the search bar and click "Search."

Scroll through the decisions to find the one you seek. The cases will be listed according to the order you select: If you click "Volume" in the "Sort By:" drop-down menu, the results will display according to the order in which the cases were decided; if you select either "Petitioner" or "Respondent" in the "Sort By:" drop-down menu, the results will display alphabetically.

State Courts

Locate your state's website by using a search engine, such as Google or Bing. You can input search terms such as "Iowa State Supreme Court" or "Florida State Court."

Find the area of the page that allows you to search for court cases.

Input any identifying information that you have available for the case, including, but not limited to, the year the case was decided or either of the case's parties.

Local Courts

Locate your county's or municipality's website. You can use a search engine, such as Google or Bing, to input general search terms such as "Cobb County, Georgia, municipal court" or "Eugene, Oregon, city court."

Select the area of the page that allows you to search for court cases.

Input any information that you have about the case. This can include information such as the case's parties or the year the case was decided.

About the Author

Anne Davis writes pieces on domestic and international travel, automotive maintenance, education and health. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English and history, and is pursuing graduate study in a related field.

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