Wisconsin Public Records

In Wisconsin, any document created or kept by an agency, regardless of physical form, is a record. Thus, any of these records available to the community to explore are public records. Wisconsin operates the State Records Center (SRC) that helps state and local agencies secure and share documents at a low cost and makes them easy to access. 

Vital Records in Wisconsin

A vital record is an account of birth, death, marriage, or divorce within the state, for which the government keeps a history. The Wisconsin Department of Health Services is the government agency charged with keeping vital records. Wisconsin’s Vital Records service division of the health department provides vital records services online. Members of the public can apply for and obtain critical statistics. It is important to note that processing fees are attached to getting certified copies of vital records. Certified copies of birth, demise, marriage, and divorce cost $20.00. Mailing or walk-in services are available by contacting the Wisconsin Office of Vital Records at: 

1 West Wilson Street

Room 160

Madison, WI 53703

Alternatively, you can send a mail to:

Vital Records

P.O. Box 309

Madison, WI 53701-0309

You can also reach the vital records division by calling 608-266-1373 during office hours. Working hours are from 8:00 am to 4:15 pm, Mondays to Fridays.

Criminal Records

Criminal statistics are available to the community for several reasons. Employers can run a background check on persons they intend to hire. An individual may decide to look up the criminal record of a new friend, or parents may choose to run a check on persons with whom their children hang out. Criminal records provide a complete history of arrest and conviction and any involvement in illegal activities. The reasons for running background checks are many. The data has been made available to the public in Wisconsin through the Department of Justice Crime Information Bureau (CIB), which is within the Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ). This Department controls the central fingerprint-based criminal repository for Wisconsin. 

Interested persons can carry out an online records check through a portal provided by the Department of Justice. You can perform a name-based search or fingerprint search at the following:

Wisconsin Department of Justice

P.O. Box 7857

Madison, WI 53707-7857

Phone: (608) 266-1221

Fax: (608) 267-2779

Email: [email protected]

Inmates Records

Wisconsin inmates’ records provide basic information of former and present inmates held in the state prisons, county jails, and correctional facilities. The information provided may include the inmate’s full name, identification number, date of birth, and other statistics. Inmates’ history is public in the state, and anyone can search. However, the identification number and full name are required to find info on an inmate. The Wisconsin Department of Correction (DOC) is responsible for managing the records of inmates. You can get more information on finding inmates and run a search at the DOC official website. It is also convenient to find inmates online using the offender locator.

You can access inmate records in person by paying a visit to the corrections department at:

Department of Corrections

P.O. Box 3099 East Washington Ave. 

Madison, WI 53704

Phone: 608-240-5000

Sex Offender Registry in Wisconsin

The Sex Offender Registry in Wisconsin provides basic information like name, height, address, and other relevant information on sex offenders. Anyone can access the registry as the records are open. The Wisconsin Department of Corrections manages the registry and is responsible for monitoring offenders’ whereabouts. The Department hosts a website that provides info on where an offender resides so the people who live in the area can take caution. The corrections department updates these records regularly for accuracy.

You can complete your offender search using the geographical search function on the website. Select a distance of 1 mile from the address entered, and the portal will provide you with a list of offenders in the area.

Wisconsin Court Records

Court records are necessary to execute specific actions like collecting child support, evicting a tenant, or reinstating a driver’s license. Court records are public documents in Wisconsin. However, sealed cases are inaccessible by the general public. Interested persons can access court documents in person at the various courthouses in the state. You can also access them from the comfort of your home using the Consolidated Court Automation Program (CCAP) management system. The CCAP connects the courts in the state electronically and helps courts in Wisconsin maintain information accessible to the public. You can also access court records from the Wisconsin State Law Library.

The CCAP chief information officer is located at:

110 East Main Street, Suite 500

Madison, WI, 53703-3328

Phone: (608) 267-3728

Fax: (608) 261-6655

Contact the Library via any of the following numbers:

800-322-9755

TTY: 800-947-6644

Reference: 608-267-9696

Circulation: 608-266-1600

Fax: 608-267-2319

Email: [email protected]

Business Records in Wisconsin

Documents that record events related to businesses in the state are business records. They contain information on companies and business owners within the state. They are retrievable documents that the community can access. You can look up businesses by name or advanced search option provided by the Wisconsin Secretary of State.

You can locate a range of business services and business information online through the state’s website. You can also find relevant filings regarding business at the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions. Find information on business taxes through the State of Wisconsin Department of Revenue (DOR).

visit Wisconsin Secretary of State to go through business information in person at: 

Wisconsin Secretary of State Division of Corporations

Corporations Bureau 

Suite 300, P. O. Box 7846

Madison, WI 53707-7846

Telephone: 1(608) 261-7577

Fax: 1(608) 267-6873

Email: [email protected]

Wisconsin Property Records

Property records are public in Wisconsin. The Parcel Initiative system maintained by the State of Wisconsin Department of Administration (DOA) is a state-wide digital parcel map. It helps your search in finding property owners or records within the state. This system also allows the public to obtain data on land mapping. The Wisconsin Land Information Program (WLIP), also controlled by the DOA, is another platform that can aid your search for property data.  

Contact the Division of Intergovernmental relations with regards to the Parcel Initiative at:

101 E. Wilson Street, 9th Floor 

Madison, WI 53703

Mailing Address: 

P.O. Box 8944

Madison, WI 53707-8944

Telephone: (608) 266-7043

Contact WLIP:

(Contact/Mailing Address) same as above.

Telephone: (608) 267-3369

Email: [email protected]

Finally

 The public can access pretty much any information in Wisconsin from the comfort of their homes or by visiting in person the government agencies responsible for the records. Some information is not available for the public to go through; these include ongoing investigations, sealed documents, and other private papers. An individual must be legally eligible to do so to access such information, typically by court order.