What does it mean when they say your divorce decree is public record?

i thought that marital matters were personal. I mean you need identification to obtain any information on someone’s marriage. How can it haunt someone for it to be a public record? Is there a way to block someone from getting your divorce decree information?

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    7 Responses to “What does it mean when they say your divorce decree is public record?”

    1. p Says:

      I look at public records often as part of my job. A public record is just what it is called – any member of the public can look at it. This includes civil, criminal, divorce, family (such as custody disputes), small claims, tax liens, utility delinquencies etc. For a divorce record, any person that knows your full name could go to the court house and request to look at your divorce record. I have seen divorce records that include the parties addresses and a lot of personal information. I have seen records that have emails back and forth of the ex husband and wife fighting. It can also include all property that was split including addresses for businesses owned, make and model of cars, addresses of homes owned, names and visitation rights of children involved and so much more. I have also seen public records that include peoples social security numbers, however I have never seen that in a divorce record.
      You can always go to the court house and request to view your divorce record to see exactly what is in it. I’m not sure but there may be ways to seal your record. You would have to check with a lawyer for that.
      Every court I have dealt with requires that you fill out a form giving your name at least before looking at the record. The court maintains a log of every person that looks at each record. There may be a way you could see who has looked at your divorce record if you are concerned.
      Hope this helps!

    2. AmmoBride Says:

      Your marriage license and divorce decree are public record, meaning that anyone who wants to find it can look it up. How can it haunt you? The only way it can haunt you is if you tell someone you’ve never been married, and they look it up and find out you’re lying. It doesn’t tell the story of your marriage, or why it broke up, it simply tells the date you wed, and the date you divorced. I don’t think there is a way to seal that information. Again, it’s simply a record of names and dates, not anything more.

      I’m sorry I couldn’t be more help, but I wish you luck.

    3. The Lioness Says:

      No, there is no way to block this information generally. There may be various state laws however that can influence what is allowed and what is not. Marriages, divorces and deaths as well as births, are public record. What that means, is that since it is a government contract and your marriage is acknowledged by the United States, then the documentation and proof of that is accessible. Your marital status is not a private matter, because the government recognizes your union. One I was divorced from my first marriage, I looked into this as well and did not like that my personal business was on front street, but it was explained as to why. Really though, only that you filed for divorce is what is public. The personal details are not. Your marriage is recognized, and this is demonstrated through our tax system as well.

      What is blocked however, are the details around the divorce decree. Such as, strangers can not see your address, social security number etc. legally. I advise you to speak to a lawyer that specializes in domestic issues. You have a lot of questions I’ve noticed regarding this and in order for you to get professional advise that is completely accurate, you need to speak to a lawyer that is well verses on your domestic state laws so that you can fully understand the process. In the meantime, there are plenty of articles online to help you with understanding the dynamics of divorce regarding how it is filed, records, what is legal and what is not.

      Best of luck.

    4. Rob W Says:

      Your marriage and divorce are keep as public records at the courthouse or county where they where preformed. It doesn’tt give out social security numbers but does give address info at the time of the divorce. You can pay the court clerks office a fee for a copy but it only gives out the info about the names address at the time of the divorce or marriage. Only if you are married to 2 or more women at the same time is the only way to haunt you. Usually the person who you get the information on will also be contacted that you haveobtained the public record but is not always the case.

    5. tangleweb98 Says:

      As others have stated, public record is exactly that; "public". It’s the equivalent of a contract, in fact it IS a contract. It’s unlikely others will take the time or trouble to look it up, unless they have an overriding interest in doing so. On the other hand, don’t lie about your prior marriage & divorce to someone to whom this information may be important enough to look up 🙂

    6. Nicole Says:

      No, divorce and marriage records are public record. Anyone can get a copy or view them at anytime for any reason.
      Your marriage license and divorce documents are not public record, you may need an ID to view the divorce documents.
      I don’t see how it would haunt you. 50% of all marriages end in divorce. Its normal these days….common. Its not like someone looks into your marital history before they hire you or give you a credit card.

    7. Smurfette Says:

      This is only listed in the Public Records as who got married/who got divorced/who had a baby/etc.
      These are called vital statistics. Your drivers license
      is also public property. Anyone can go through these
      records. That is where the news media find out which stars got restraining orders/separation and divorces, etc.
      even driving tickets.
      Don’t worry about the dirty laundry tho. These are just
      BASIC statistics. Names, dates, location, etc.