Public records are basically government records; these are documents or pieces of information that are not considered confidential. On 1968 the California legislature passed the California Public Records Act which made governmental records available to the public upon request. Most California Vital Records can be requested from local and state government agencies, including the Department of Justice.

Records are defined by the California Department of Justice as “any writing owned, used or maintained by the Department in the conduct of its official business. Writings include information recorded or stored on paper, computers, email, or audio or visual tapes.”

Trying to find the right office for a specific type of record could be perplexing. The local government has four (4) basic units. One is the cities, which deals with the concerns within the state’s cities. Two, counties, as that of the cities, it only deals with concerns regarding the state’s counties. Three is the special districts, as per the name entails, it deals with fire protection, waste disposal and such in their own respective area. Four is the regional bodies, which extend beyond local city and county grounds and are concerned with air and water quality, in addition to other essential commissions.

Generally, the services the city and county officers execute stay the same all throughout the state of California. The administrative office deals with purchasing agent for the County, handles media relations and recruitment of employees. For property valuation and taxes there’s the Assessor’s office. For budget control, periodical audits, property tax administration it’s the Auditor-Controller’s office that handles those. Issuing marriage licenses, processing passport applications, registering and maintaining voter files, filing campaign statements, conducting elections in the county are the duties of the County Clerks. Lastly, it’s the District Attorney’s office duty to investigate and prosecute criminal violations, legal advisor to the Grand Jury, Victim/Witness Assistance Program.

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The process on how to get a copy of any public files may take awhile and may impede on whatever it is that you’re working on. It usually takes a few working days and you are still to pay for administrative fees, processing and postal fees. If you need a faster result for more or less the same amount of fee, the best way is to go online. There are many online agencies that could help you seek out these documents faster. There are even free ones but may have scanty results.

Paid online agencies could definitely help you in your California Public Records search. Not only do they understand the necessity to have it as promptly as possible, because they know that time is essential but they give out a more detailed report and a reliable one at that, since they could go through public and private databases.