A variety of public records can be obtained by almost anyone that requests them in Texas. However, depending on the type of record being requested, some restrictions may apply. For example, the State of Texas is not required to provide certain data, even if it is a matter of public record, if it reveals confidential information (like trade secrets) about a private corporation or individual. It is important to understand which types of records have restrictions and which do not. The following questions cover the most common types of records, how to access them and what restrictions apply to each.
Are birth records public in Texas?
Birth records for anyone born in Texas within the last 75 years are available only to immediate family members, authorized legal representatives and to the person themselves. Records for births that occurred more than 75 years ago are available to the general public. The Texas Department of State Health Services has birth indexes going back to 1903 that are available to download for free.
How do you get a copy of a Texas birth certificate?
You can order a copy of a birth certificate at the Texas Department of State Health Services. They provide both certified and non-certified copies of birth certificates. Only immediate family members or the person named on the birth certificate may order a copy for any births within the last 75 years.
Are Texas death records public?
Only the immediate family members or authorized legal representatives may order a death certificate for deaths within the last 25 years. Anyone can order a certificate for deaths that occurred more than 25 years ago. The Vital Statistics Section of the Texas DSHS maintains death indexes dating back to 1903 that can be downloaded and viewed for free.
Are Texas marriage records available to the public?
Marriage records in Texas are public and can be viewed by anyone. The Vital Statistics Section of the Texas Department of State Health Services maintains indexes of all marriages since 1966 that can be downloaded and searched. Records for marriages that occurred prior to 1966 can be found at local county clerk’s offices in the state.
Where can you order a certified copy of a marriage license in Texas?
You can order certified copies of marriage licenses at the county clerk’s office in the county where the marriage occurred. A list of county clerk addresses is available from the County and District Clerks’ Association of Texas.
Are divorce records public in Texas?
Divorce records are public in Texas and can be accessed by anyone. The Texas Department of State Health Services Vital Statistics Section offers indexes of all divorces since 1968 that can be downloaded free of charge. Records for divorces prior to 1968 are only available at district clerk’s offices.
How can you get a certified copy of a divorce decree in Texas?
You can order a certified copy of a divorce decree at the district clerk’s office in the district where the divorce occurred. Contact information for all district clerks can be found at the County and District Clerks’ Association of Texas.
Are adoption records public in Texas?
Adoption records are sealed in Texas and are considered confidential. Adoptees or their adult children can request a redacted version of their adoption records that does not include the names of the birth parents. This request can be made to either the Department of Family and Protective Services or the adoption agency that handled the adoption originally.
Are Texas civil and criminal court records public?
Both civil and criminal court documents are generally available to the public in Texas. Some records are sealed and are not publicly available. This is to protect confidential information or the identities and sometimes the personal safety of those involved in the case.
How do you find court records in Texas?
The Texas Judicial Branch (TJB) handles court records for the state. The TJB has detailed information on the entire court system in Texas and how it is structured. When you need records revolving around court cases, it is ideal to contact the county or municipal court in which the case was heard. The specific court system that the case was tried in is the best resource as it will have a direct record of the proceedings.
How do you search for Texas criminal records?
You can do a criminal background check at the Texas Department of Public Safety. This will show if someone has been convicted of a crime in the state. It will also show if they have ever been arrested or prosecuted.
How do you search for inmates in Texas?
You can search for currently incarcerated individuals at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. The online search is free and will provide the projected release date as well as the facility they are currently located in.
How do you lookup sex offenders in Texas?
The Texas Department of Public Safety offers a searchable sex offender registry for free. You can search for registered sex offenders by entering an address, a registrant’s name or by choosing a college campus.
How do you lookup who owns a property in Texas?
You can find out who owns a property in Texas by contacting the appraisal district, the tax assessor’s office or the county recorder’s office for the county the property is located in. Many of the appraisal districts offer an online search for free.
How do you get a copy of a deed in Texas?
You can get a copy of a deed from the county clerk’s office for the county that the property is located in.
How do you check your driving record in Texas?
You can order your own driving record at the Department of Public Safety. They offer driving record requests both online and via mail.
How do you get your Texas driver’s license reinstated?
If your driver’s license has been suspended, you need to wait until the suspension period ends. After that you must complete the reinstatement requirements and pay the reinstatement fee at the Department of Public Safety. You can pay the fee either online or via mail.
Locating public records in the state of Texas is easier than in some other states, even with its size. Texas makes it clear as to which records the public can access and which are not available. Some are available at the state level, but most require a search in the specific county where the records are located.