Wisconsin Public Records

Understanding the availability of public records in the state of Wisconsin and how to access them is very important. Read on to learn more about what information is available and how you can access them.

Public records in the State of Wisconsin are available through the Wisconsin Public Records Law or precisely Wis. Stats. 19.31– 19.39. This law permits the citizens of Wisconsin access to all public records related to the running of the Wisconsin government business. This includes all public records of any employee or any elected official who is working for any Wisconsin government body. You may gain access to these records by making a request to the Office of Open Government, Wisconsin Department of Justice in Madison, Wisconsin, via mail,

The law does not grant access to information related to other documents of non-governmental individual or criminal activity of any person.

Wisconsin Criminal Records

You can access criminal records, such as arrest records and jail and inmate records by addressing your request to the Wisconsin Department of Justice. If you want to obtain information about the criminal history an individual arrested, adjudicated and charged in Wisconsin, you must make your request to the Criminal Records Unit of the state’s Department of Justice.

Background checks that utilize The Wisconsin Department of Justice Crime Information Bureau (CIB) has the responsibility to maintain criminal history records that local law enforcement agencies have submitted. To determine whether there is a criminal history for an individual residing in the Wisconsin, a full set of fingerprints and a Criminal History Challenge Form hat has been filled will be required.

The Offender Locator portal contains information about inmates within the DOC (Wisconsin Department of Corrections). The portal allows you to access information about the inmate status of any person throughout the entire system. To enter the portal, you must at least enter the offender’s last name.

Wisconsin Court Records

The Wisconsin Court System Circuit Court Access portal contains all the public records of the state’s Circuit Courts about a criminal defendant. You can access all these records online through the portal. You can also access some confidential records, such as those of child protection, juvenile delinquency, civil commitments, guardianship, adoption, and termination of parental rights through the portal.

The availability of court records depends entirely on the county where the court case was heard because access to the system and back loading of the older cases vary from one county to another.

Wisconsin Vital Records

You can access Wisconsin Vital Records, such as death, birth, marriage, divorce and domestic partnership through the Wisconsin Department of Health Services Vital Records Service. Applicable fee and a written application are required to perform a search for any of these records.

  • Birth records: Birth records in Wisconsin are divided into two categories. The first category comprises of those records before 1907 and the second category comprises of records from 1907 to present. While most birth records date back to 1870s, there are some Wisconsin counties that started keeping birth records in 1850s. Pre-1907 birth records are available at the Wisconsin Vital Records Office. This is also where you can get copies of birth records from 1907 to the present.
  • Death records: The state of Wisconsin organizes death records into two categories. The first category comprises of records prior to 1975 and the second category comprises of records from 1907 to present. The Wisconsin Family Library keeps accurate birth records from 1870s. However, some counties began registering births in the early 1850s. All the existing death records are available at the Wisconsin Family History Library and the Wisconsin Vital Records Office.
  • Marriage records: Marriage records in the state of Wisconsin are also divided into two categories, including early-1907 and 1907 to present. Statewide registration of marriages in Wisconsin began in 1907, but individual counties had been recording marriages in earlier years. You can obtain marriage records from the Wisconsin Vital Records. You can also request for them from the Registrar of Deeds in the county where the event took place.
  • Divorce records: Divorce records also exist in two categories: Early-1907 and 1907 to present. Most copies of pre-1907 divorce records are available at the Family History Library. Divorce records from 1907 to present are available at the Wisconsin Vital Records.

When you understand the accessibility of public records in the state of Wisconsin and the procedure to follow to access information, you will be able to obtain any record that you are looking for.

Wisconsin State Court System

Understanding how the system of Wisconsin state court works is very important as it helps you find court records easily.

Wisconsin Courts Overview

With the basic understanding of the organization of Wisconsin state court system and how it works, it will be easier for you to find the court files and records you are looking for. To make your work easier, start searching for court records in Wisconsin by simply going to courts by county.

The trial court system of Wisconsin State consists of Municipal Courts and Circuit Courts.

Circuit Courts

Wisconsin Circuit Courts have original jurisdiction over all types of Criminal and civil cases. However, Circuit Courts usually handle only those cases that are beyond the jurisdiction limit of Municipal Courts. Circuit Courts also have unlimited jurisdiction over all jury trials.

Wisconsin Circuit Courts have limited jurisdiction over all types of criminal cases. Typically, Circuit Courts do not actually handle ordinance violations that are within a Municipal Court jurisdiction.

Civil cases generally heard by Wisconsin Circuit Courts include most juvenile cases, probate matters, domestic relations, civil equity cases, and general civil claims.

Municipal Courts

Wisconsin Municipal Courts have limited jurisdiction over majority of ordinance violations. Typical cases that Municipal Courts handle include ordinance violations, traffic violations, and non-jury trials particularly for first offense drunk driving.

Wisconsin Municipal Courts also handle certain types of juvenile cases, including alcohol violations, truancy, curfew violations, and drug offenses. Municipal Courts have no jurisdiction over jury trials. They don’t offer jury trials. If the proper request is made and granted, the case can be transferred to Wisconsin Circuit Courts. A Municipal Court doesn’t have jurisdiction to hear cases requesting equitable relief.

Circuit Courts hear ordinance violations in the areas where Municipal Courts are not available.

Court Notes

The State of Wisconsin is currently in the process of expanding its trial court system. It is actually developing special or “problem solving” court programs within its Circuit Courts. These specialized court programs are developed to handle some types of cases. They include offender reentry courts, domestic violence courts, specialized juvenile courts, mental health treatment courts, and drug treatment courts. All these court programs operate as “problem solving” or specialized court programs of Circuit Courts.

The State of Wisconsin is also considering establishing some divisions within the Municipal Courts. ?Every division must have its jurisdiction, which can be shared with Municipal Courts.

Currently, the files of cases exist in Circuit Courts and Municipal Courts.

The Official Website of Wisconsin County

Milwaukee City of Milwaukee
Madison City of Madison, Wisconsin
Kenosha City of Kenosha The City of Kenosha website helps citizens and visitors learn about city services and conduct business, including permit applications and online payments.
Racine Welcome to the City of Racine The official website for the City of Racine, Wisconsin
Appleton Appleton, WI
Waukesha Waukesha, WI | Official Website
Oshkosh City of Oshkosh
Eau Claire City of Eau Claire, Wisconsin
Janesville Janesville, WI
West Allis West Allis, WI – Official Website
La Crosse La Crosse, WI
Wauwatosa Wauwatosa, WI
Fond du Lac City of Fond Du Lac
New Berlin New Berlin, WI – Official Website
Wausau Wausau Wisconsin
Milwaukee County Milwaukee County | County of Milwaukee
Dane County Welcome to Dane County, Wisconsin The official County Government website for Dane County, WI. Find information on elected officials, local news & events, county services and more!
Brown County The official website of Brown County, Wisconsin government Brown County Government, Green Bay, Wisconsin – providing Brown County news, services and event information
Racine County Racine County, WI Racine County Courthouse730 Wisconsin Ave.Racine, Wisconsin 53403262-636-3333
Outagamie County Outagamie County, WI
Winnebago County Welcome to Winnebago County | Winnebago County
Kenosha County Kenosha County, WI – Official Website
Rock County Rock County Wisconsin
Marathon County Marathon County Wisconsin
Washington County Washington County, WI A Winter Weather Emergency has been declared for Washington County. All non-essential Washington County offices will be closed Monday, January 28.As part of this closure, the Justice Center will be closed and all court matters will be rescheduled.
Sheboygan County Sheboygan County
La Crosse County Official Web Site of La Crosse County Government Welcome to the official website of La Crosse County, Wisconsin
Walworth County Walworth County
Fond du Lac County Fond du Lac County Welcome to the new official Fond du Lac County site. Government officials, departments and services plus much more.
Eau Claire County Eau Claire County
Ozaukee County Ozaukee County, WI – Official Website
St. Croix County Welcome to St Croix County
Jefferson County Welcome to Jefferson County
Manitowoc County Manitowoc County, WI
Wood County Wood County Wisconsin
Portage County Portage County, WI
Chippewa County Chippewa County, Wi
Sauk County Sauk County Wisconsin Official Website
Columbia County Columbia County Website
Waupaca County Welcome to Waupaca County, WI
Grant County Grant County, Wisconsin Grant County, Wisconsin World Wide Web Site
Calumet County Calumet County, WI – Official Website
Barron County Barron County, Wisconsin – www.barroncountywi.gov
Monroe County Monroe County, Wisconsin –
Polk County Polk County, Wisconsin Polk County Wisconsin
Douglas County Douglas County, WI – Official Website
Dunn County Dunn County, WI
Shawano County The Official Shawano County Government Web Site Shawano County – Honoring Tradition, Discovering Tomorrow
Marinette County The Official Marinette County Government Website Marinette County has everything! Find information on Government officials, departments, services and more.
Pierce County Pierce County

Wisconsin Inmate Roster and Jail Roster

TypeNameCountyAddressPhone NumberInmate Search
Federal PrisonOxford Federal Correctional InstitutionAdams CountyCounty Road G & Elk Avenue, Oxford, WI 53952(608) 584-5511Federal Inmate Locator
State PrisonGreen Bay Correctional InstitutionBrown County2833 Riverside Drive, Green Bay, WI 54307-9033(920) 432-4877Inmate Search
State PrisonChippewa Valley Correctional Treatment FacilityChippewa County2909 E. Park Avenue, Chippewa Falls, WI 54729(715) 720-2850Inmate Search
State PrisonStanley Correctional InstitutionChippewa County100 Corrections Drive, Stanley, WI 54768-6500(715) 644-2960Inmate Search
State PrisonColumbia Correctional InstitutionColumbia County2925 Columbia Drive, Portage, WI 53901-0950(608) 742-9100Inmate Search
State PrisonPrairie du Chien Correctional InstitutionCrawford County500 E. Parrish Street, Prairie du Chien, WI 53821-6000(608) 326-7828Inmate Search
State PrisonOakhill Correctional InstitutionDane County5212 County Hwy. M, Oregon, WI 53575-0140(608) 835-3101Inmate Search
State PrisonDodge Correctional InstitutionDodge County1 W. Lincoln Street, Waupun, WI 53963-0661(920) 324-5577Inmate Search
State PrisonFox Lake Correctional InstitutionDodge CountyW10237 Lake Emily Road, Fox Lake, WI 53933-0147(920) 928-3151Inmate Search
State PrisonWaupun Correctional InstitutionDodge County200 S. Madison Street, Waupun, WI 53963-0351(920) 324-5571Inmate Search
State PrisonTaycheedah Correctional InstitutionFond du Lac County751 County Road K, Fond du Lac, WI 54936-1947(920) 929-3800Inmate Search
State PrisonWisconsin Secure Program FacilityGrant County1101 Morrison Drive, Boscobel, WI 53805-0900(608) 375-5656Inmate Search
State PrisonJackson Correctional InstitutionJackson CountyN6500 Haipek Road, Black River Falls, WI 54615-0232(715) 284-4550Inmate Search
State PrisonNew Lisbon Correctional InstitutionJuneau County2000 Progress Road, New Lisbon, WI 53950-2000(608) 562-6400Inmate Search
State PrisonMilwaukee Secure Detention FacilityMilwaukee County1015 N. 10th Street, Milwaukee, WI 53205-0740(414) 212-3535Inmate Search
State PrisonRacine Correctional InstitutionRacine County2019 Wisconsin Street, Sturtevant, WI 53177-1829(262) 886-3214Inmate Search
State PrisonRacine Youthful Offender Correctional FacilityRacine County1501 Albert Street, Racine, WI 53404-0001(262) 638-1999Inmate Search
State PrisonSturtevant Transitional FacilityRacine County9351 Rayne Road, Sturtevant, WI 53177(262) 884-2410Inmate Search
State PrisonKettle Moraine Correctional InstitutionSheboygan CountyW9071 Forest Drive, Plymouth, WI 53073(920) 526-3244Inmate Search
State PrisonRedgranite Correctional InstitutionWaushara County1006 County Road EE, Redgranite, WI 54970(920) 566-2600Inmate Search
State PrisonOshkosh Correctional InstitutionWinnebago County1730 W. Snell Road, Oshkosh, WI 54903-3530(920) 231-4010Inmate Search
County JailAdams County JailAdams County301 Adams Street, Friendship, WI 53934(608) 339-4239Jail Roster
County JailBarron County JailBarron County1420 State Hwy 25 North, Barron, WI 54812-3007(715) 537-5559Inmate Roster
County JailBayfield County JailBayfield County615 Second Avenue, Washburn, WI 54891(715) 373-6117Jail Roster
County JailBrown County JailBrown County3030 Curry Lane, Green Bay, WI 54311(920) 448-4250Inmate Search
County JailBurnett County JailBurnett County7410 County Road K, Siren, WI 54872(715) 349-2128Inmate Roster
County JailCalumet County JailCalumet County206 Court Street, Chilton, WI 53014-1198(920) 849-1447Inmate Roster
County JailChippewa County JailChippewa County50 E Spruce Street, Chippewa Falls, WI 54729(715) 726-7704Inmate Roster
County JailClark County JailClark County517 Court Street, Neillsville, WI 54456(715) 743-5379Jail Roster
County JailColumbia County JailColumbia County403 Jackson Street, Portage, WI 53901(608) 742-6476Inmate Roster
County JailCrawford County JailCrawford County224 N Beaumont Road, Prairie du Chien, WI 53821(608) 326-8414Jail Roster
County JailDane County Public Safety Building JailDane County115 W. Doty Street, Madison, WI 53703(608) 284-6100Jail Roster
County JailDodge County Detention FacilityDodge County216 W. Center Street, Juneau, WI 53039(920) 386-3734Jail Roster
County JailDoor County JailDoor County1203 S. Duluth Avenue, Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235(920) 746-2400Jail Roster
County JailDouglas County JailDouglas County1310 North 14th Street, Superior, WI 54880(715) 395-1375Inmate Roster
County JailDunn County JailDunn County615 Stokke Parkway, Menomonie, WI 54751(715) 232-2220Inmate Roster
County JailEau Claire County JailEau Claire County710 2nd Avenue, Eau Claire, WI 54703(715) 839-4702Inmate Roster
County JailFond du Lac County JailFond du Lac County63 Western Avenue, Fond du Lac, WI 54935(920) 929-3394Jail Roster
County JailForest County JailForest County100 South Park Avenue, Crandon, WI 54520(715) 478-3331Jail Roster
County JailGrant County JailGrant County1000 North Adams Street, Lancaster, WI 53813(608) 723-6372Inmate Roster
County JailGreen County JailGreen County2827 6th Street, Monroe, WI 53566(608) 328-9400Jail Roster
County JailGreen Lake County Correctional FacilityGreen Lake County571 County Road A, Green Lake, WI 54941(920) 294-4059Jail Roster
County JailIowa County JailIowa County1205 North Bequette Street, Dodgeville, WI 53533(608) 935-3314 ext. 2Jail Roster
County JailJackson County JailJackson County30 N. 3rd Street, Black River Falls, WI 54615(715) 284-5357Inmate Roster
County JailJefferson County JailJefferson County411 S. Center Avenue, Jefferson, WI 53549-1703(920) 674-7310Jail Roster
County JailJuneau County JailJuneau County200 Oak Street, Mauston, WI 53948(608) 847-9513Jail Roster
County JailKenosha County Detention CenterKenosha County4777 88th Avenue, Kenosha, WI 53144(262) 605-5800Inmate Search
County JailDowntown Pre-Trial FacilityKenosha County927 54th Street, Kenosha, WI 53140(262) 605-5111Inmate Search
County JailKewaunee County JailKewaunee County620 Juneau Street, Kewaunee, WI 54216(920) 388-3100Jail Roster
County JailLa Crosse County JailLa Crosse County333 Vine Street, La Crosse, WI 54601(608) 785-9630Inmate Roster
County JailLanglade County JailLanglade County840 Clermont Street, Antigo, WI 54409(715) 627-6444Jail Roster
County JailLincoln County JailLincoln County1104 E 1st Street, Merrill, WI 54452(715) 536-6275Jail Roster
County JailManitowoc County JailManitowoc County1025 South 9th Street, Manitowoc, WI 54220(920) 683-4339Inmate Roster
County JailMarathon County JailMarathon County500 Forest Street, Wausau, WI 54403(715) 261-1700Jail Roster
County JailMarinette County JailMarinette County2161 University Drive, Marinette, WI 54143(715) 732-7630Jail Roster
County JailMenominee County JailMenominee County831 10th Avenue, Menominee, MI 49858(906) 863-4441Jail Roster
County JailMilwaukee County JailMilwaukee County949 North 9th Street, Milwaukee, WI 53233(414) 226-7070Inmate Search
County JailMonroe County JailMonroe County112 S. Court Street, Sparta, Wisconsin 54656(608) 269-2117Jail Roster
County JailOconto County JailOconto County301 Washington Street, Oconto, WI 54153(920) 834-6918Jail Roster
County JailOneida County JailOneida County2000 East Winnebago Street, Rhinelander, WI 54501(715) 361-5180Jail Roster
County JailOutagamie County JailOutagamie County320 S. Walnut Street, Appleton, WI 54911(920) 832-5266Inmate Roster
County JailOzaukee County JailOzaukee County1201 S. Spring Street, Port Washington, WI 53074(262) 284-7172Inmate Search
County JailPepin County JailPepin County740 7th Avenue West, Durand, WI 54736(715) 672-5945Jail Roster
County JailPierce County JailPierce County414 W. Main Street, Ellsworth, WI 54011(715) 273-5051Inmate Roster
County JailPolk County JailPolk County1005 West Main Street, Balsam Lake, WI 54810(715) 485-8370Inmate Roster
County JailPortage County JailPortage County1500 Strongs Avenue, Stevens Point, WI 54481(715) 346-1259Jail Roster
County JailPrice County JailPrice County164 Cherry Street, Phillips, WI 54555(715) 339-4116Inmate Roster
County JailRacine County JailRacine County717 Wisconsin Avenue, Racine, WI 53403(262) 636-3929Inmate Search
County JailRichland County JailRichland County181 W. Seminary, Richland Center, WI 53581(608) 647-8906Jail Roster
County JailRock County JailRock County200 E US Highway 14, Janesville, WI 53545(608) 757-7907Jail Roster
County JailRusk County JailRusk County311 Miner Avenue East, Ladysmith, WI 54848(715) 532-2200Jail Roster
County JailSauk County JailSauk County1300 Lange Court, Baraboo, 53913(608) 355-3210Jail Roster
County JailSawyer County JailSawyer County15880 5th Street, Hayward, WI 54843(715) 634-4858Inmate Roster
County JailShawano County JailShawano County405 N. Main Street, Shawano, WI 54166(715) 526-7950Jail Roster
County JailSheboygan County Adult Detention CenterSheboygan County2923 South 31st Street, Sheboygan, WI 53081-4612(920) 459-1300Inmate Roster
County JailSheboygan County Juvenile Detention CenterSheboygan County525 North 6th Street, Sheboygan, WI 53081(920) 459-1300Jail Roster
County JailSt. Croix County JailSt. Croix County1101 Carmichael Road, Hudson, WI 54016(715) 386-4752Jail Roster
County JailTaylor County JailTaylor County224 South Second Street, Medford, WI 54451(715) 748-1431Jail Roster
County JailTrempealeau County JailTrempealeau County36245 Main Street, Whitehall, WI 54773(715) 538-2311 ext. 452Jail Roster
County JailVernon County JailVernon County1320 Bad Axe Court, Viroqua, WI 54665(608) 638-5780Jail Roster
County JailVilas County JailVilas County330 Court Street, Eagle River, WI 54521(715) 479-4441Inmate Roster
County JailWalworth County JailWalworth County1770 County Road NN, Elkhorn, WI 53121(262) 741-4510Jail Roster
County JailWashburn County JailWashburn County421 Highway 63, Shell Lake, WI 54871(715) 468-4720Jail Roster
County JailWashington County JailWashington County500 N Schmidt Road, West Bend, WI 53095(262) 335-4427Jail Roster
County JailWaukesha County JailWaukesha County515 W. Moreland Blvd, Waukesha, WI 53188(262) 548-7170Inmate Roster
County JailWaupaca County JailWaupaca County1402 Royalton Street, Waupaca, WI 54981(715) 258-4466Jail Roster
County JailWaushara County JailWaushara County430 East Division Street, Wautoma, WI 54982(920) 787-6591Jail Roster
County JailWinnebago County JailWinnebago County4311 Jackson Street, Oshkosh, WI 54901(920) 236-7380Jail Roster
County JailWood County JailWood County400 Market Street, Wisconsin Rapids, WI 54494(715) 421-8730Jail Roster