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Kentucky Court Records

Kentucky court records are found mainly at the State Law Library in Frankfort, offering online resources to the public, administration and judiciary of the state. Many of these records are also found at the Archives and Records department in Louisville. Depending upon the type of case you’re looking for, you may have to search one or both of these facilities’ volumes.

Many civil and criminal court records are available for the public’s research. There are also numerous resources for anyone planning to represent themselves in court or file for divorce, child support or another common request of the court. Understanding the court rules and procedures can streamline this process and aid in the prevention of filing the wrong paperwork with the wrong office, enabling the court to better serve the public in the long run.

Many Kentucky court records are utilized by the Supreme Court justices and local members of the Bar to research past cases when preparing for court arguments or drafting opinions. Oral arguments from the Attorney General, former Supreme Court decisions and even current statutes that affect the area are all vital to case preparation for these legal professionals.

Kentucky Court Records

History of Kentucky Courts

The Kentucky Supreme Court was created in 1975 via a constitutional amendment, meant to lessen the burden on the state’s Court of Appeals. The State Law Library was later created to hold and maintain Kentucky court records for the use of the state’s judiciary, administration and the public. These legal resources are found in the library in the capitol building, and can be accessed online as well.

Kentucky Court Statistics

Kentucky Courts recieve 936,675 filings per year. In 2012, the court received 1,050,728 filings and gave 1,046,112 dispositions. In 2016, the state court caseload counted 845,392 filings and had 837,485 dispositions.

Total State Caseloads

Year Caseloads
2012 1,050,728
2013 974,620
2014 929,975
2015 882,661
2016 845,392

Kentucky Court Records Availability

Kentucky court records held by the State Law Library include historical documents, Kentucky statutes, court rules and forms, Attorney General opinions, Supreme Court opinions, oral arguments and House and Senate Journals. There is also a rare book collection at the library and statutes for all other states in the country.

Criminal and civil Kentucky court records can be searched online as well as divorce and marriage records, court dockets and case histories. If you plan on representing yourself in the court of law, searching court rules, procedures and necessary forms online is an invaluable resource. The Archives and Records Department in Louisville offers access to most of these types of Kentucky court records as well.

Share of Court Type Incoming Caseloads

Court Type Caseloads
Traffic: 235,860 (27.9 %)
Domestic Relations: 64,784 (7.7 %)
Criminal: 330,299 (39.1 %)
Civil: 214,449 (25.4 %)

Share of Court Type Outgoing Caseloads

Court Type Caseloads
Traffic: 237,615 (28.4 %)
Domestic Relations: 61,306 (7.3 %)
Criminal: 329,738 (39.4 %)
Civil: 208,826 (24.9 %)

Kentucky Main Court Information

Kentucky’s Supreme Court is the state’s highest appellate court, hearing appeals from all lower level trial courts. There are seven justices serving the court, and they each have eight-year terms. This court has mandatory jurisdiction over cases involving sentences of more than 20 years of imprisonments or the death penalty. Other appeals must be approved by the Court of Appeals before they are heard by the Supreme Court. Justices meet in Frankfort at the capitol building.

Family Court Cases

Domestic relations caseload of Kentucky at year end 2016 has decreased by 13.8% compared to the last 5 years, in 2012 the number of incoming cases was 73,719 with a rate of 1,683 cases per 100,000 population, higher than it's in 2016.

Year Domestic Relations Caseload Total Statewide Caseload
2012 73,719 1,050,728
2013 69,375 974,620
2014 66,191 929,975
2015 64,454 882,661
2016 64,784 845,392

Domestic Relations Clearance Rates

Year Incoming Caseload Outgoing Caseload Caseload per 100,000 Population
2012 73,719 72,574 1,683
2013 69,375 69,945 1,578
2014 66,191 65,222 1,500
2015 64,454 62,146 1,457
2016 64,784 61,306 1,460

States with More & Less Domestic Relation Caseloads than Kentucky

More Domestic Relations Cases than Kentucky:

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

Less Domestic Relations Cases than Kentucky:

State: Caseload:
Washington 59,949
Louisiana 58,947
Nevada 56,575
Arkansas 52,577
Minnesota 49,714

Kentucky Caseload Statistics

Kentucky’s Supreme Court only hears several hundred cases per year. In 2007, there were 580 filings and 591 dispositions. In 2012, there were 493 filings and 429 dispositions.

Kentucky Criminal Caseloads

The number of criminal cases in Kentucky counts 88,433.

Year Criminal Caseload Misdemeanor Caseload Felony Caseload
2013 216,468 86,256 130,037
2014 212,360 85,521 126,654
2015 336,778 82,152 254,505

State Civil Caseload & Clearance Rates

In the last 5 years the number of civil cases has decreased by 28,718 cases, it went from 243,167 to 214,449 with clearance rates of 102% and 97%.

Year Civil Caseload Clearance Rate
2012 243,167 102
2013 224,533 103
2014 213,566 102
2015 215,067 96
2016 214,449 97