The requirement of public policy and the law requires that public records be kept corresponding to proceedings that involve the government in one way or another, but these two basis are actually based on the even more important requirement of practicality. Without the records, there is no way that the proceedings could be verified, checked, or even be used as a basis for other proceedings that would be substantially the same. Of course, the requirements of practicality dictate that these records should be kept at one location, and Sarasota County Public Records are indeed kept at one location so that they could be found easily if there is a need for them.
Public records contain a number of things, but they always contain the names of the parties. These records are, in fact, given titles after the names of the parties even if there are a number of times when the name of one of the parties is not known. The records also indicate within their confines what type of records they are and what type of proceeding they are a record of. Outside of this two specifics, however, the contents of these records vary. Nevertheless, they are of great use not only to law practitioners who are searching for precedents, but also for ordinary people in several other types of endeavors.
As was mentioned before, public policy requires these records to be maintained. Corollary to this is the requirement of the law that these records should be available to the public at all times. No less than statute had required the official custodian of these documents, the clerk of courts, to keep these records open to the public. For this reason, the clerk or his deputies could not refuse access to the archives where the records are kept even if they do not think that the person who is making the request should be granted access.
Still, there are a number of procedures that one must first comply with before the archives would be opened to the searcher. Permission has to be obtained from the clerk, and while there are a varied number of methods that could be used in order to gain permission, perhaps the most efficient would be to make the request personally at the office of the clerk of courts. Once permission has been given, the searcher could either make the search himself and ask for the assistance of a clerk or to leave the actual search in the hands of a clerk who, presumably, is more familiar with the filing system.
Either way, once the records had been located, they would be handed over to the searcher who, nevertheless, may not actually take the record out of the archives, because they are the original copies. Instead, the searcher may ask for copies of the records to be made, and this would be done after the searcher makes the payment of one dollar per page or five dollar per page as the case may be. Once the copies are made, they would be certified after paying the fee of two dollars per document to be certified.
There is another method of obtaining records that may be faster than going to the office of the clerk, and this would only require an internet connection. There are a number of database that proliferate the World Wide Web, and they provide substantially the same information as the one that the office of the clerk of courts could provide. Of course, because they are internet searches, they are usually free and easier to use and understand, in addition to the fact that they are connected to other websites that may provide more information that may be of other uses to the searcher.