The existence of the archives that is known as the Leon County Public Records archives is mandated by law, but founded upon practicability and public policy. Practicability because the existence of these records would provide a great boon to the general public that reside both in and out of the county as these people could use the archives in searching for official records that they may found to be of great use in their lives. Public policy because society believes in something called freedom of information, and by opening the archives, this great freedom is demonstrated and exhibited to the world at large.
The records contained within the walls of this archives are important not only because they provide information to the general public, they also serve as a means to ensure that the constitutional and statutory requirement of due process are met. Not everyone could actually be inside a court room to witness a hearing, so not everyone could ascertain if the proper requirements of due process had been met, and even if a lot of people are inside the court room, sometimes, those who actually know what due process is are not, hence, the need for these records.
Public records are recognized by statute and commanded by the same to be always available to the public regardless of circumstance. Following this mandate, the clerk of court, who is the official custodian of the same, could not refuse anyone access to the records, but because they are also charged with maintaining and securing the records, they are well within their mandate to formulate procedures that must be followed before anyone could access the records.
A request to look into the official records could be accomplished by a number of means. The Clerk of Court accepts requests via email, letter, fax, and in-person, though it is the last that is suggested given that it is faster and could provide same day access. Note that the clerk could not deny the request anyway. Once the records had been opened, the searcher has the option of doing the search or asking the clerk to do the search. In this regard, the former is suggested since the clerk, who knows their filing system better, should be able to locate the records faster.
Looking for the records may take some time, but once they had been located, they should be available to the searcher who may look at them, but could not actually take them out or make annotations on them. This is because these are the original copies and the clerk of court is tasked with securing them, though for a copy of the records could be made for one dollar per page. The same copy would then be certified for two dollars per page by the clerk of courts who is the only person actually authorized to certify copies of official records.
With the dawn of the age of the internet, another option of looking for records had developed, and that is the internet search. Although the clerk of court has an online database, the same is currently incomplete given the volume of records that have to be transcribed into electronic format, so it is suggested that for those who wish to do internet searches, they just use other online resources. These databases are easy to locate and are often easier to use. In addition to the fact that most of them provide access to their records free of charge, because these searches are done using the internet, not only is there no need to fall in line or to leave the house, the searches are faster and more efficient.
Leon County Court Records Public Access
To obtain authenticated court records from the office of the clerk of court of Leon County, follow the following procedures
- Visit the Office of the Clerk of Court
- Inform the clerk of your request to look into the records.
- You could either do the search yourself or leave the search to the clerk.
- One the records had been located, ask for a copy.
- Pay the copying fee of one dollar per page for regular sized pages, or five dollars for oversized pages.
- Once the copies are made, have the same certified at two dollars per document.
Florida Public Records
Comprehensive Public Court Records of Florida Counties