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Are any parts of small claims cases recorded in a standardized manner and available for public review?

Chicago, IL |

I'm curious if county clerks are required to keep publicly accessible records of small claims cases. If they are not, shouldn't this all be a matter of public record, being that it's in the public interest, occurs in a court of law, and is funded by the public?

Attorney Answers 3

Posted

Courts are facing unprecedented financial cutbacks, and yes, these are matters of public interest, but the public's free to observe the suits live, and these public matters are by definition, "small" so they've never had the access to documents and proceedings that higher courts cases have.

That said, in CA, small claims cases do appear on public searches for records of individuals and entities.

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Posted

No

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Posted

You should check with the court clerk's office of the small claims court you are concerned with and see what records they keep? You can usually get a copy of the summons and complaint, answer, any cross-complaint, judgment, and satisfaction of judgment but that would be about it?

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