If you have a case pending in a Minnesota state court, you may wonder how you can access case information? Do you need to go to the courthouse and make a request in person? The answer is yes and no. While some sensitive case information may only be available through public access terminals located at each Minnesota state courthouse, you can also access a great deal of case information online. In this article, we’ll discuss the types of cases and information available and the cost for accessing case information.
What Kinds of Cases Are Available?
On the Minnesota courts website, you can perform a case search of both the Minnesota District court cases, the Minnesota Supreme Court, and the Minnesota Courts of Appeals. Under the Rules of the Public Access to the Records of the Minnesota Judicial Branch, you cannot access certain information like protective orders, domestic abuse and harassment cases, medical records, child protection records, and other sensitive documents.
What Court Case Information is Available?
You can generally access court information in three ways:
- Electronic Access in the Courthouse: Each Minnesota district courthouse maintains public access terminals. This system contains the most complete access to district electronic case information.
- Physical Access in the Courthouse: Each courthouse also allows in-person counter access to any locally stored, public case records in paper form.
- Electronic Access Online: You can also access a great deal of publicly available case record information through the Minnesota Courts website.
Through the Minnesota courts website, you can view the publicly available docket or register of actions for Minnesota district courts, courts of appeals, and the Minnesota Supreme Court. In some instances, you can also download and view documents important to the case.
- Minnesota District Court: The docket will include a list of actions taken in the case and the date that it happened. For example, a criminal case might indicate the charges filed, the plea, and the disposition, including the dates. A civil docket might include documents related to a civil case, such as the complaint and response, briefs to the court, and any orders from the court.
- Courts of Appeals and Supreme Court: You can find publicly available documents that have been filed with the court, including case statements filed by both parties, transcripts, notice filings, and briefs filed by the parties, and any orders issued by the court.
On the Minnesota courts page, you can also find the websites for your local district court, as well as the local court calendars for publicly available cases.
Is Court Case Information Free?
The court case information available in the online system can be accessed for free. If you need hard copies of documents only available through counter access or the courthouse public access terminal, you may be charged a fee for printing or copying. Certified copies of any documents start at $14.