How to Obtain Court Records in Alaska
Courts are the repositories of many official documents in the United States, whether a person has inherited something, owned property, been arrested, divorced, bankrupt, adopted, evicted, or sued. Other legal documents such as birth, death, and marriage certificates are usually found in county offices.
Court records in Alaska
District courts are where misdemeanor issues like shoplifting, minor assaults, and traffic tickets are handled; superior courts are where trials for felony charges such as murder, rape, and robbery are held. Magistrates are often located in district courts – they are responsible for things like summonses, approving search warrants, marriage licenses, and other documents. Note that Native reservations, which comprise more than 44 million acres in Alaska, may come under a separate court jurisdiction. See links on this page for information: http://www.ncsc.org/Topics/Special-Jurisdiction/Tribal-Courts/Resource-Guide.aspx.
Getting trial court records
The state has created an online system for searching cases but the information contained in the results is likely minimal, containing information like the names of the people involved, the charges, and the judge’s decision or sentence. Use this page to begin a search: https://records.courts.alaska.gov/eaccess/home.page.2
This page http://www.courts.alaska.gov/trialcourts/index.htm#recs provides more information on requesting records, including audio recordings of court sessions, as well as links to the forms necessary to make requests of certain records. Requests should specify if a plain paper copy or a certified copy (stamped, for official purposes) is necessary.
To obtain comprehensive court documents, including transcripts of testimony and supporting documents like motions, one must send a written request to the court where the case was decided. Be sure to include all necessary information including the names of the plaintiff and defendant, the dates, and the docket or case number. A list of the courts and their mailing addresses can be found here: http://courts.alaska.gov/courtdir/index.htm.
If you need to file for bankruptcy or find out if your business partner has a history of bankruptcy in Alaska, the records are kept by the U.S. District Court. More information may be found here: http://www.akb.uscourts.gov.
If you have successfully discharged a bankruptcy (completed all of the court’s requirements) it is important to keep a record of it for future creditors. If you were a creditor named in a bankruptcy case you may also need records for taxes, etc. Request records by following links on this page: http://www.akb.uscourts.gov//forms/all-forms.
Probate records show how property and other assets are transferred after the owner’s death. If you have inherited property or think you should have, you may check Alaska probate records by searching for wills on the court records page here: https://records.courts.alaska.gov/eaccess/home.page.2.