Wisconsin Criminal Records
According to the official website of Wisconsin’s Department of Justice, Wisconsin is an “open records” state. This means that most of the Wisconsin criminal records maintained by the state and local government agencies are open to the general public for inspection. This is provided by the Wisconsin statute 19.35(3) and as such, all adult Wisconsin criminal records in the Criminal Investigation Bureau (CIB) database are included in the open record rule.
However, exemptions to the rule apply. Juvenile Wisconsin criminal records are confidential under s. 938.396. Thus, Wisconsin criminal records of crimes committed by minors will not be disclosed or revealed to the general public unless the statute says otherwise.
The pieces of information in the CIB’s Wisconsin criminal records history database are based on submissions. Each police department is required by Wisconsin state and federal law to file records of arrests. Since 1971, Wisconsin law enforcement agencies were required under s. 165.84(1) to submit arrest fingerprint cards for offenses designated in s. 165.83(1)(c). For offenses other than those listed in x. 1365.83(1)(c), the law enforcement agencies receives the right to take other arrest fingerprint cards, in which case, the CIB is still required by law to accept these.
Wisconsin Criminal Records -- Fee Information
The State of Wisconsin charges a small fee for each access or search of Wisconsin criminal records. The fee applies to the search and not the result. This means that you will be charged a search fee even if the response is “no record found.”
The fee for Wisconsin criminal records search is required by law. According to Statute 165.82, the search cost for Wisconsin criminal records is determined by the type of search you are requesting. If you are requesting for a Wisconsin criminal records search over the Internet, charges are understandably lower as the documents are readily available in PDF format. If the requester is a non-profit organization, the charge is $2. For a governmental agency, each Wisconsin criminal records search costs $5. For any other requester, the charge is substantially higher at $13.
If you to have a hard copy of the documents, you can also put up a request for a mail or fax of results. Charges are higher in order to cover up the cost of the print job, stamps, and other miscellaneous expenses. For non-profit organizations, the charge for each Wisconsin criminal records search is $7. Governmental agency pays $10 for their search results while any other requester pays $18 for their Wisconsin criminal records search.