How “public” is public arrest records?

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Public records are some of the most important documents the government creates for a person. But what exactly are they?

A public record is just a document drafted by the government, that is available to anyone via the Freedom of Information Act. These constitute anything from court transcriptions, to a person’s driving record. 

Access to your public records is hugely important. They can help inform your decisions regarding employment, housing, car insurance, and so much more. However, though the government provides access to these records, the proper channels to acquire them can be tedious and can take significant amounts of time to get any results.

For instance, if you try to obtain your arrest record, you may think it prudent to contact the police department that performed the arrest. However, this will require a physical visit to the station, where you will need to wait to speak with an officer at the desk. They’ll direct you towards someone more suited for this task, who will then sort through the police department’s records to find your name. If the police department isn’t digitized, this may mean actually opening and reading through filing cabinets, until they find the information you’re looking for. If you were incorrect about the police department, you may have to leave and visit the correct one to begin the process anew.

That’s just one channel the government provides for you to obtain public records. If you go through the courts, you’re liable to wait days, if not weeks for them to obtain your public arrest record. If you’re trying to obtain your driving record, the DMV will move at a speed appropriate for the DMV and may take weeks as well to get the information mailed to you.

Many law offices have access to legal databases that more efficiently record and provide the necessary information, but they’re likely only going to provide you with these public records if you’re a client, which won’t be cheap.

Luckily, there is one way to get these public records, without having to deal with high fees or ridiculous wait times. SpyFly, an online public records database, can provide you with the public arrest records you need in seconds, rather than days. The website is easy-to-use and extremely intuitive. All you need to search is the name of the person, and the state the record was created in. It’s easy, it’s quick, and it’s cheap.

SpyFly provides consumers affordable, immediate access to public record information. Federal laws prohibit businesses from using SpyFly’s service to make decisions about employment, insurance, consumer credit, tenant screening, or for any other purpose subject to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, 15 USC 1681 et seq.

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