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Browsing in Archives > FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions


Why can't I see the manila envelope stamped "Confidential" in my file?

If an envelope is stamped "Confidential" it may not be viewed by any party without an order from the Court.  If you want to see the contents of the envelope you must submit a request and obtain authorization from the Court.

I am now the attorney for the party listed on this case, why can't I see the confidential file?

You must be the Attorney of Record on the case. You will need to file a Substitution of Attorney. Once you have filed the proper document, return to Archives with a conformed or certified copy, and you will be able to see the file.

Can anybody view and/or get copies from my file?

If your file is public record, YES, anyone can view and request copies from it.  The cost is 50¢ per page for a one-sided document, $1.00 per page for a two-sided document, $15.00 per document for a certified document and $15.00 for a certified copy of a Final Judgment for dissolution of marriage. 

If your file is a confidential case, NO, the only person(s) that can see and have copies made from the file are the parties listed in the title of the case or if the Register of Actions has another person listed as a party to the action.

Can you help me find the document(s) I am looking for?

Yes, but pursuant to Government Code 70627(c), you will be charged $15.00 for any record search we do at your request lasting longer than 10 minutes.

Can I submit a record request to you via Facsimile (FAX)?

No, we do not accept FAX requests from private individuals or companies.

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Do I need to have a copied document certified?

It would generally depend on the reason the document is needed. If the case is an old case or if you are using this document for legal purposes, you may want it certified. The decision would ultimately be up to you.

I don’t know my case number, how do I find it?

You can use the computers available in the viewing room.  The court systems available are Archives (Anacomp), BANNER, COFACS, COFACS Archives and V2. There is a Help Menu located on the top right hand corner of each monitor to assist you in navigating these systems.

If your case is an old Superior Court case (prior to 1976) we have index books you can use to look up your name and find the case number. 

If you want Archives staff to find your case number using any of the court systems, or the index books, there could be a $15.00 search fee pursuant to GC 70627(c)

Can I get a copy of my marriage license, birth certificate or death certificate here?

No, these records are maintained by the Fresno County Recorder's Office located on the third floor of the Hall of Records, 2281 Tulare Street, Fresno, CA 93721.

How long are files kept?

The retention of case files varies depending upon the type of case it is, and whether or not there was a disposition or judgment for the case.  Cases may be retained anywhere from 10 years to indefinitely.

As the adopted child, do I have access to view my adoption case? 

Pursuant to Family Code § 9200 the file is not open for inspection by any person other than the parties to the proceeding (adopting parents) and their attorneys.  However, you can request, in writing, your need to inspect the adoption record.  Submit your reasons to a Superior Court judge for a court order to authorize you to review the Adoption record.

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