How the Pennsylvania Government Handles Pennsylvania Public Records
Since the freedom of information act, many states have been required to release information that may be of public interest. Background checks, criminal histories, marriage licenses and more are all available, since each one can be used for a publically relevant purpose.
Pennsylvania public records have taken this a step further. The state has passed what is known as the "Right-to-Know" law. This law has changed the way that Pennsylvania public records can be accessed, and the openness of the government in providing that information.
What the Law Involves
In the past, records were chosen on the basis of what is considered publically relevant. For example, it was considered relevant for the public to know about criminal histories, so that information was public in Pennsylvania public records.
The Right-to-Know law changes how that process works. Rather than only release information that has already become a matter of public record, the law states that any and all information is assumed to be public record, and it is the burden of the state to prove it is not if they choose to withhold any piece of information.
This has made it possible to access far more information from Pennsylvania public records, and has also made it much easier to find the information you need on people, businesses, or government agencies.