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Kansas Court Records

Kansas has a long history of supporting the public’s quest of government documents, from establishing a Supreme Court Law Library to voting for funding the collections of the Kansas State Library. Kansas court records can be found online through the Supreme Court Law Library’s volumes of books, legal documents and periodicals.

The public is most often interested in researching past opinions and rulings in civil and criminal court cases, as well as finding necessary court forms, rules and procedures when representing themselves in the court of law. Attorneys, Supreme Court justices and employees of the state’s judiciary all regularly utilize the resources available at the Supreme Court Law Library in Topeka.

Kansas Court Records

History of Kansas Courts

In 1861, the Kansas Constitution created the Supreme Court and allowed for three justices. This was increased to seven justices in 1900. The Kansas Judicial Center, which houses the Kansas Supreme Court and Kansas Supreme Court Law Library, was built in Topeka in 1978.

Kansas Court Statistics

Kansas Courts recieve 835,720 filings per year. In 2012, the court received 205,396 filings and gave 198,379 dispositions. In 2016, the state court caseload counted 176,679 filings and had 159,642 dispositions.

Total State Caseloads

Year Caseloads
2012 904,007
2013 853,204
2014 847,818
2015 805,528
2016 768,042

Kansas Court Records Availability

The Kansas Supreme Court Law Library is located in Topeka, and maintains more than 185,000 volumes and 600 periodicals. Other records held here include statutes for all states and federal codes, treatises, briefs, law reviews and opinions from appellate level cases. The library also shares resources with other libraries in the state, offering access to Kansas court records to the public. However, only members of the Kansas Judiciary and attorneys are permitted to borrow materials, so online searches are the best method to find records of interest.

Kansas court records often searched for by the public include court forms and rules, oral arguments and court dockets. Criminal and civil court records can also be found in the volumes held at the law library. Kansas statutes and published opinions, legal journals and law reviews are also of interest when researching past cases.

Share of Court Type Incoming Caseloads

Court Type Caseloads
Domestic Relations: 34,696 (19.6 %)
Civil: 141,983 (80.4 %)

Share of Court Type Outgoing Caseloads

Court Type Caseloads
Domestic Relations: 31,922 (20.0 %)
Civil: 127,720 (80.0 %)

Kansas Main Court Information

There are currently seven justices sitting on the Kansas Supreme Court, and they are appointed by the governor. Prior to 1958, they were selected by partisan elections. This court exercises jurisdiction over civil and criminal appeals from lower courts and constitutional questions from federal courts.

Nominations for appointment are made by the Supreme Court Nominating Commission. Three candidates are selected for a seat, then this list is reviewed by the current justices and they submit their recommended justice to the governor. The governor, however, can choose any of the three candidates he wishes. Once a justice is given a seat on the court, they must withstand a retention vote after the first year of service. Each justice is given a six-year term on the court if they pass the retention vote.

Family Court Cases

Domestic relations caseload of Kansas at year end 2016 has decreased by 14.9% compared to the last 5 years, in 2012 the number of incoming cases was 39,867 with a rate of 1,381 cases per 100,000 population, higher than it's in 2016.

Year Domestic Relations Caseload Total Statewide Caseload
2012 39,867 904,007
2013 32,714 853,204
2014 35,987 847,818
2015 35,329 805,528
2016 34,696 768,042

Domestic Relations Clearance Rates

Year Incoming Caseload Outgoing Caseload Caseload per 100,000 Population
2012 39,867 37,668 1,381
2013 32,714 33,138 1,130
2014 35,987 32,137 1,239
2015 35,329 32,728 1,213
2016 34,696 31,922 1,193

States with More & Less Domestic Relation Caseloads than Kansas

More Domestic Relations Cases than Kansas:

State: Caseload:
New York 570,709
Texas 397,468
California 388,903
Pennsylvania 342,163
Virginia 342,040

Less Domestic Relations Cases than Kansas:

State: Caseload:
Iowa 34,221
Nebraska 32,394
Utah 23,967
Idaho 22,769
South Dakota 16,805

Kansas Caseload Statistics

The Kansas Supreme Court averages 2,000 filings per year. In 2007, there were 2,016 filings and 3,005 dispositions. In 2014, there were 1,930 filings and 3,169 dispositions.

Kansas Criminal Caseloads

The number of criminal cases in Kansas counts 46,656 with 21,474 felony cases and 25,182 misdemeanors accordingly.

Year Criminal Caseload Misdemeanor Caseload Felony Caseload
2012 49,689 19,059 30,122
2013 50,665 20,365 29,884
2014 48,905 20,234 28,210
2015 47,360 20,954 25,945
2016 47,013 21,474 25,182

State Civil Caseload & Clearance Rates

In the last 5 years the number of civil cases has decreased by 23,546 cases, it went from 165,529 to 141,983 with clearance rates of 97% and 90%.

Year Civil Caseload Clearance Rate
2012 165,529 97
2013 157,013 95
2014 138,523 95
2015 141,766 93
2016 141,983 90