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The FOI Advocate is a compendium of ideas, edited story excerpts and other materials from a variety of Web sites, as well as original concepts and analysis. When the information comes directly from another source, it will be attributed and a link will be provided whenever possible. The blog relies on the accuracy and integrity of the original sources cited. We will correct errors and inaccuracies when we become aware of them.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Oklahoma Supreme Court Opinion A Blow To Access...

I'm needing to get a copy of this opinion, which sounds pretty grim...

Oklahomans' access to court records on the Internet will be limited by rules adopted Tuesday by the Oklahoma Supreme Court.

The court said individual pleadings and other recorded documents filed in state court actions shall not be publicly displayed on the Internet. People wanting to see this information can go to the courthouse and view it.

The court said it issued the rules in order to balance the rights of privacy of individuals who use Oklahoma's court system and public access to court documents. The rules affect operations of the state's district courts.

These rules regarding privacy and public access to court documents will be effective June 10.

The rules also say people filing cases should omit personal identifiers such as Social Security numbers, taxpayer identification numbers, names of minor children, dates of birth, financial account numbers and home addresses.

Omitting these things from documents was called "outrageous overreaching” by Joey Senat, past president of FOI Oklahoma and an Oklahoma State University journalism professor specializing in freedom of information.

More here.

More here, including a great debunking of the identitfy theft FOI issue...

1 comment:

Don said...

The Oklahoma Supreme Court has withdrawn its order restricting public access to court records.

The decision Tuesday came after complaints from lawyers, free-speech advocates, law enforcement, court clerks, journalists and companies that perform background checks that the restrictions, intended to prevent identity theft, were too far reaching.

The new rules, which were to take effect June 10, would have required removal of personal information such as Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, and other data from court filings. The rules also would have prohibited the posting of court pleadings on the Internet.

The Supreme Court, in a brief statement from the office of Chief Justice James R. Winchester, said it was withdrawing the order to allow time for further study and consideration of the issue.