How to Obtain Court Records in Kansas
Finding the right court documents in Kansas is a matter of knowing which court clerk to contact. Most criminal and civil trials, misdemeanor offenses, family matters like divorce and adoption, and traffic infractions are handled by district courts. There is one district court in each of the state’s 105 counties, and these courts are arranged into 31 judicial districts.
Above the district courts are the state’s appellate courts, which hear disputes over decisions made by district courts as well as the state Corporation Commission, which oversees consumer protection, utilities, and the environment.
The state supreme court is the final arbiter of constitutionality in the state, deciding if lower court decisions contained errors of law or constitutionality, and whether state laws comply with provisions of the constitution.
Requesting court documents
Having copies of court decisions can be helpful to prove one’s innocence, to get reimbursement that’s part of a court order, to show that the terms of probation or parole have been satisfied, and more. There is a paid search on the following page: https://www.kansas.gov/countyCourts/search/records?execution=e1s1. Most such searches turn up only minimal information such as the names, case number, and date of the court hearing. To get more in-depth information like a transcript it is necessary to request it from the clerk of the court where the case was heard. Use this directory of district courts to find the correct clerk: http://www.kscourts.org/kansas-courts/district-courts/contacts.asp.
Keeping a copy of your divorce decree is helpful for a variety of reasons, including future marriage licenses, financial documents, and enforcing custody arrangements. The district court where the divorce was granted is the only source for an official copy of a decree.
State courts are not responsible for bankruptcy records or files, the U.S. District (federal) court is. These courts also handle class action lawsuits, civil lawsuits between states, and federal criminal charges. To search records for bankruptcy and other federal court issues, use this site: https://www.pacer.gov/.
A division of each district court in Kansas handles probate matters, which are the final dispositions of estates, including money and property. You may contact the probate division in the county where the person lived to research his or her heirs and dispersal of worldly property. Probate courts may also handle guardianships of the mentally unfit and elderly, adoptions, and other similar issues.