Official proceedings produce official records, and often, these official records are the only documents that would be accepted in other official proceedings. This makes these records very important because aside from the fact that they are most often the only source of background information in other official proceedings, they typically contain information that are of great use to the public. These are but few of the reasons why the collection of documents known as the Suwannee County Public Records are of great importance to the public and why they are generally considered to be available to the public at all times.
To understand the importance of public records, one must first consider the contents of these records. All public records, of course, contain the names of the parties involved in the proceeding, though there are some records that contain only the name of the party initiating the proceeding owing to the fact that sometimes, it is not possible to name the adverse party. From there, the records contain a myriad of information that are of great use to the public as these types of information range from the background of the people involved in the proceedings to the results of the proceeding itself. This means that these records are of great use not only for law practitioners who are searching for precedents for their cases, but also for regular ordinary people who are looking for information.
The importance of these records is best demonstrated by the fact that no less than Florida statute require that they be available to the public at all times. Of course, one could also make the argument that they are available because of the requirements of practicality and expediency. In any case, this is the reason why the official custodian of the records could not refuse anyone the right to look into the archives where the records are being kept, though there are still some procedures that a person must follow in order to gain access to the archives.
Permission to visit and look into the archives were the records are being kept is required for two reasons, for an orderly release of the information and for security purposes. One must remember that the records kept within the archives are the original records, and as such, they must be kept secured for future use. Also, it would not be practical for a lot of people to be inside the archives given its limited space. Still, acquiring permission to look into the archives is relatively easy.
One only needs to head to the office of the clerk of courts and ask for permission there. There are a number of other methods to ask for permission, but this is the generally accepted most efficient way. Once permission is given, the searcher is free to either do the search himself or ask the clerk to do it, presumably, they would be able to locate the record requested for faster. Note that because these are the original records, they could not be taken out of the archives, instead, the searcher has to ask for a copy of the same. The required fee is one dollar per page, plus two dollars per document for certification.
Another option would be to conduct the search online. There are a number of online databases that do provide the same information as the ones that are available with the clerk of courts, but these databases sometimes provide their information free of charge. In addition, because they are internet searches, they are relatively faster and easier, with the searcher needing only a basic knowledge of the internet to effect. They also have the added advantage of being connected to other databases that provide other types of information.