Georgia Public Records

Georgia’s version of the Freedom of Information Act is known as the Georgia Open Records Act. Georgia Code § 50-18-70, the Georgia Open Records Act, specifies that all public records, except those specifically exempted from disclosure under the law, be made available for inspection and copying. Any Georgian government agency or custodian of public records that withholds a public document from production under an Open Records Request must cite the specific statutory provision of the law that exempts the record from production. Open records requests can be verbal or written, but any action to enforce the Act must be based on written requests.

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Public & Vital Records for Counties in Georgia

More About Georgia

Georgia is the nation’s eighth-most populous state. As of 2016, its population was estimated to be 10,310,371. It has the nation’s second-highest number of fastest-growing counties and is experiencing a boom in growth in population and industry. Known for its largest city, Atlanta, Georgia has a number of fast-growing cities and communities, both in the suburban area and throughout the rest of the state. Georgia is considered to be a great state for business, and its economy includes strong sectors in agriculture, mining, industry, logistics, the military, energy, film, and tourism. As with any rapidly-growing area, Georgia is seeing an influx of people from outside of the state. Therefore, anyone running a background check in Georgia should be certain to check prior states or countries of residence, as well.


Public Records in GA

Georgia does not maintain a single online repository for public records; instead, open records requests must be made to applicable agencies. There are three basic types of individual public records in the state of Georgia: property records, vital statistics, and criminal histories.

Property Records

Georgia does not have a statewide repository of property or land records. However, the Georgia Department of Revenue does maintain a database of counties that offer property records, particularly tax records online. That list is located on the Georgia Department of Revenue’s website. In Georgia, any record relating to real property is considered a property record. These records may include land records, deeds, tax records, and any document that impacts ownership or rights to land, including mortgages and liens.

Land Records

The Georgia Clerk’s Authority maintains the Georgia Consolidated Real Estate Index, which allows people to perform some statewide property searches in the state of Georgia. These searches can look for land by name, county, book, page, subdivision, unit, lot and type of instrument. While helpful, this index does not contain all land or property records in the state of Georgia.

Property Tax Records

The Georgia Department of Revenue maintains a list of links to county-level board of assessors or tax commissioners, which offer access to tax records online and, in some cases, give property owners the ability to pay taxes online.

Deed Records

In Georgia, the Superior Court Clerk of each county is responsible for recording deeds and other instruments, such as mortgages and liens, which impact ownership or rights in property. Many of these instruments are available online in the Georgia Clerk’s Authority’s Georgia Consolidated Real Estate Index. If documents are not available on the consolidated index, they can be located with the Superior Court Clerk of the county in which the property is located.


GA Vital Records

The Georgia Department of Public Health’s State Office of Vital Records is the official state repository of vital records. In Georgia, vital records are defined under Georgia Code § 31-10 and Georgia Department of Public Health Regulation 511-1-3 as birth, death, fetal death (stillbirth), induced termination of pregnancy, marriage and divorce certificates and reports.

Birth Records

In Georgia, there are a variety of ways to request birth records. You can order them by phone or online through one of two third-party vendors, through the State of Georgia’s vital statistics server ROVER, through a mail-in request to the State Office of Vital Records, or by walking into the State Office of Vital Records or any County Vital Records Office.

Death Records

In Georgia, there are a variety of ways to request death records. You can order them by phone or online through one of two third-party vendors, through a mail-in request to the State Office of Vital Records, through the State of Georgia’s vital statistics server ROVER, or in-person at the State Office of Vital Records or any County Vital Records Office.

Marriage Records

In Georgia, you can request marriage records for marriages occurring after 1952 through a mail-in request to the State Office of Vital Records, or in-person at the State Office of Vital Records or any County Vital Records Office. Marriage records prior to June of 1952 must be requested at the office of the probate judge in the county where the license issued.

Divorce Records

In Georgia, you can request divorce records for divorces that occurred between June 1952 and August 1996; all other divorces records must be obtained from the Clerk of the Superior Court in the county where the divorce was granted.

Learn About Criminal Records in Other States


Learn about Georgia criminal records or read about public records in another state from the list below: