[APG Public List] Knowing the Law

Alvie L. Davidson CG floridasearch at verizon.net
Tue Dec 15 07:37:54 MST 2009

Good morning Elissa

You are right on about knowing the law.  We have a booklet published in FL
by the First Amendment Foundation.  It clearly sets out the law concerning
what is a public record and what is not.

I keep my "Government in the Sunshine" booklet in my briefcase when I go
visit courthouses.

It has become necessary to challenge a clerk occasionally and when
challenged it works.



Alvie L. Davidson CG
Lakeland, Florida


CG and Certified Genealogist are Service Marks of the 
Board for Certification of Genealogists 
used under license after periodic evaluations by the Board.


From: apgpubliclist-bounces at apgen.org
[mailto:apgpubliclist-bounces at apgen.org] On Behalf Of Elissa Scalise Powell,
Sent: Tuesday, December 15, 2009 9:10 AM
To: 'JUDY A RIFFEL'; 'APG Public List'
Subject: RE: [APG Public List] East Baton Rouge marriage licenses


Pennsylvania "locked up" their military discharges because of the SSN
numbers on them. They date back to the Civil War. I asked the clerk to see
them. He had to get his supervisor who said it was the law. She asked if I
wanted to see the law. I said yes. She went back to her office to find it.
The first clerk gets a call at the front desk. Yes, let me have access but
they had to search the index and it would be a $5 cost for the search
whether found or not. 


Apparently she found the law and actually read it this time which does state
about public access for a "reasonable charge." I know she made the charge up
on the spot. Guess I wasn't too annoying or it could have been $10. <G>


Bottom line - Know the law or have them produce it for you.


-- Elissa in Pittsburgh


Elissa Scalise Powell, CG


CG and Certified Genealogist are Service Marks of the Board for
Certification of Genealogists, used under license by board certificants
after periodic evaluations by the Board. 


From: On Behalf Of JUDY A RIFFEL
Sent: Tuesday, December 15, 2009 7:30 AM

I have recently heard that the East Baton Rouge Parish Clerk of Court has
locked up the cabinet with the marriage license microfilm and is not
allowing the public to access them.  They are claiming that a federal law
prohibits the publication of social security numbers and addresses on the
Internet.  They plan to scan the microfilm and block the prohibited
information.  In the meantime, the public cannot access any of the marriage
records, even though the SS# only started appearing on the form in the
1970s.  Their marriage records date back to 1840.


Is any other jurisdiction doing this?

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