Nebraska Public Records
Nebraska Public Records Laws are generally permissive and allow easy access to most government records. The state's Open Records Act, codified under Nebraska Revised Statutes Chapter 84, sets forth the public's right to inspect and obtain copies of public records, with some limited exceptions.
There are no specific timeframes for agencies to respond to records requests, but the law does require that requests be processed within four business days. No statement of particular need or purpose is necessary to make a request.
How to Find Nebraska Public Records
A person must determine the government agency that maintains the records being sought. A public records request can be submitted to the agency in writing, by mail, phone, or in person. The request should include the name and address of the requester, as well as a description of the records you need.
There is no central repository for all public records in Nebraska, so a records search will likely require contacting several agencies. Most agencies have a form that can be used to submit a records request, or you can make the request in writing.
Are Nebraska Public Records Available Online?
Like most states, Nebraska offers online access to some public records. The state's Online JUSTICE Court Case Search System provides access to court case information, including criminal records.
Counties such as Douglas and Lancaster have online property records portals that allow users to search for real estate information. Some counties also provide access to birth, death, and marriage records.
Some third-party websites collect and provide access to government records from all over the country, including Nebraska. However, these websites are not affiliated with the state or government agency and come with a fee.
What Records are Available in Nebraska?
The types of records that are available to the public in Nebraska will vary by agency. However, some of the most commonly requested records include:
• Birth records
• Death records
• Marriage records
• Divorce records
• Criminal records
• Arrest records
• Property records
What Records are Non-Public in Nebraska?
The laws state that agencies may withhold records from public disclosure if they fall under certain exemptions. These exemptions are generally intended to protect the privacy of individuals or to prevent the release of information that could be used to harm someone. Examples of records that may be exempt from disclosure include:
• Social security numbers
• Driver's license numbers
• Home addresses
• Medical records
• Personnel records
• Trade secrets
• Juvenile records
• Test results and questionnaires
• Security system plans
Types of Public Records Available in Nebraska
The following are some of the types of public records that are available in Nebraska:
Nebraska Public Criminal Records
A criminal record is a record of a person's criminal history. This history includes all arrests, charges, and convictions. Nebraska criminal records are public records, which means they are available to the general public.
The State Patrol maintains the Nebraska Records of Arrest and Prosecution (RAP), which is the state's central repository for criminal history information. The RAP Sheet includes information on arrests and prosecutions in Nebraska.
The search is limited since it only pulls up information from individuals that have been fingerprinted.
A $15.50 fee is required to obtain a copy of an individual's RAP sheet, and you will need to create an account and have the following information about the person you are searching for:
- First name
- Last name
- Date of birth
Police Departments and Sheriffe Office in Nebraska :
Arrest Records and Warrants
Arrest records can be accessed through the RAP sheet. You can also visit the local county sheriff's office to check for outstanding warrants.
A few counties have an online warrant search feature on their website, but most will require you to contact the sheriff's office directly. For instance, Lancaster County has a Warrant List that shows the names, photos, charges, and agencies of individuals with outstanding warrants.
Alternatively, you can also use the court case search system that is available online to check for criminal cases and warrants.
Inmate and Jail Records
The Department of Corrections maintains a public database of all incarcerated inmates in Nebraska state prisons. The Nebraska Department of Correctional Services (NDCS) has an inmate search tool that you can use to find someone by their name, DCS number, or date of birth.
It is best to input the DCS number if you know it, as this will provide the most accurate results.
Jails and Prisons in Nebraska :
Nebraska Background Checks
Fortunately, Nebraska has a dedicated website that provides access to several agencies that offer information that can be used for a background check. The website is called the Nebraska Background Check, and it gives access to:
- State Patrol's Criminal History Record Information
- Nebraska Judicial Branch's Court Case Search Tool
- Department of Motor Vehicles' Driver Records
Nebraska has employment protection laws that prevent employers from discriminating against employees based on their criminal history. The Ban-The-Box Law applies to public employers and prohibits them from asking job applicants about their criminal history on the initial application.
There is also the Workplace Privacy Act in which employers are prohibited from asking for the user name, email, and password to any social media account of employees.
How to find Sex Offenders in Nebraska
The State Patrol is also responsible for maintaining the sex offender registry in Nebraska. This registry includes all convicted sex offenders in the state. You can search for sex offenders by their name, location, or region through the online Sex Offender Registry website.
Nebraska Public Vital Records
The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services maintains all vital records for the state of Nebraska. You can order birth, death, marriage, and divorce certificates through the Division of Public Health Vital Records by mail, in-person, or online.
You will need to provide the following information when ordering a vital record:
- Full name of the person on the certificate
- Date of the event
- City or county where the event occurred
- Your relationship with the person on the certificate
The cost of the certificate will depend on what application type you use and how many copies you order.
Nebraska Court Records
As mentioned above, the Nebraska Judicial Branch offers an online court case search tool that you can use to find criminal, probate, traffic, juvenile, and civil cases. A $15 fee will be charged for each case file you search.
You must go to the district court clerk where the case was filed to request copies. The clerk will provide you with a price list, and you will need to pay the required fee before the copies are released.
Court records usually include the following:
- Case files
- Court minutes
State Court System in Nebraska
Nebraska has a unicameral state legislature, meaning only one chamber or house exists. The Nebraska Legislature is responsible for creating laws, and the members are elected to four-year terms.
The state court system in Nebraska is divided into three levels:
- Trial Courts
- Appellate Courts
- Supreme Court
Courts in Nebraska :
The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) is responsible for maintaining driving records in Nebraska. You can order your driving record via the DMV in person.
You must submit an Application for a Copy of Driving Record to the address indicated on the form, along with the required fee. The fee for a driving record history is $7.50. Your driving record will include information such as your:
- Date of birth
- Driver's license number
- Driving history
For easier access, you can also request your driving record online by providing your name, date of birth, Driver's license number, OR Social Security Number. A $7.50 fee will be charged for each online request.
Civil Driving Infractions
Traffic offenses are tried in the county court where the violation occurred. Points are added to your individual driving record if you opt to plead guilty or the court finds you guilty of a traffic offense.
Civil driving infractions are moving violation that is not criminal. These include offenses such as:
- Driving without insurance
- Failure to use a seat belt
- Running a stop sign
Your license may be suspended if you accumulate too many points on your driving record. The length of the suspension will depend on the number of points you have on your record.
Nebraska License Plate Lookup
If an individual wants to find out information about a vehicle in Nebraska, they can do so by performing a license plate lookup. This can be done by submitting a request to the Nebraska DMV.
To do a license plate lookup, you need to provide the following information:
- The license plate number of the vehicle
- The make, model, and year of the vehicle
- Your name and contact information
- The reason for your request
You can also do a license plate lookup online through third-party websites. These websites will provide you with information such as the vehicles:
- Owner's name and address
- Registration Status
- Title information
- Lienholder information
However, remember that these websites are not affiliated with the DMV and may charge a fee for their services.
Nebraska Property and Asset Records Online
There is no statewide database for property records in Nebraska. However, most counties have an online search tool that you can use to find property records.
To find property records, you need to know the address or parcel ID of the property. Once you have this information, you can go to the county assessor's office website and search for the property records.
Some counties also have GIS maps that you can use to find property records. These maps allow you to search for property records by address, owner's name, or parcel ID.
If you cannot find the property records online, contact the county assessor's office directly and ask for assistance.
The state government manages unclaimed properties in the meanwhile. The Nebraska State Treasurer is responsible for managing unclaimed property. This includes the money and other assets abandoned by their owners.
If you think you may have unclaimed property in Nebraska, you can search for it online on the state treasurer's website.
Important Government Agencies in Nebraska
The following agencies may be able to help you access public records in Nebraska:
- Secretary of State
- Governor's Office
- History Nebraska
- Nebraska Legislature
- Office of Attorney General
- Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services
- State Patrol
- Nebraska Judicial Branch
- Department of Corrections
- Department of Motor Vehicles
- State Treasurer
Counties in Nebraska
- Box Butte
- Keya Paha
- Red Willow
- Scotts Bluff
List of Content
- How to Find Nebraska Public Records
- What Records are Available in Nebraska?
- Types of Public Records Available in Nebraska
- Nebraska Public Criminal Records
- Arrest Records and Warrants
- Inmate and Jail Records
- Nebraska Background Checks
- How to find Sex Offenders in Nebraska
- Nebraska Public Vital Records
- Nebraska Court Records
- Driving Records
- Civil Driving Infractions
- Nebraska License Plate Lookup
- Nebraska Property and Asset Records Online
- Important Government Agencies in Nebraska