Skip to Main Content

Court Records

Court Record Request

Public Record Policy

State Court Administrator - Oregon Judicial Department Copy Policy

Yamhill County Circuit Court Copy Policy

Court Records

Most court records are kept at the Yamhill County Courthouse 535 NE 5th Street, Room 135, McMinnville, Oregon 97128-4504. Some older court records are stored in a separate building, while even older records are stored by the Oregon State Archives. Records are in the forms of paper case files, transcriber notes, microfilm, microfiche, images stored on a server and audio recordings.

Depending upon staff work load and the location of the information to be copied, requests for information may take several days or several weeks to complete.

Restricted Records

Juvenile, mental commitment and adoption records are confidential, thus access to them is limited. To request copies of these types of records complete a court records request, then attach a letter explaining your relationship to the court case. This letter must be signed by you.

Court Record Request

For a records search to be effective the following minimum information must be provided on the court record request:
1. the name of the plaintiff or the defendant, and,
2. a three year range of the date of the matter.
Additional information, such as the case number makes the search easier for staff to complete and for the records to be sent to you.
To submit a request for court records in-person come to Room 135 on the first floor of the courthouse, ask to complete a court record request, complete the form, then make arrangements to pay the amount due.
To submit a request for court records by mail complete the Court Record Request, then mail your request to the courthouse address listed above.

Methods of Payment

The court accepts three methods of payment to obtain copies of court records. A part of each method below is a printed receipt from the court, which is included with copies sent to you.
1. The fastest way to obtain copies of court records is to submit your VISA or MasterCard credit card number and card expiration date with your court record request. The court only accepts VISA or MasterCard.
2. A second payment method is to submit a personal check with your records request. Make the check payable to State of Oregon and write in a dollar amount you believe will be equal to the amount due, including postage. If the amount on your check is less than the amount due a staff member will need to contact you about an additional amount due. If the amount on your check is more than the amount due, and that difference is more than $5.00, the court will refund the overpayment to you. However, the court has a practice to not issue checks for amounts less than $5.00.
3. The third method of payment involves withholding payment for copies of records until the amount due is known. However, the court will not begin the photocopy process of requested records until the amount due is received.

Situation 1: If you live in the local calling area a staff member will call by you telephone to inform you about the amount due.

Situation 2: If you live outside of the local calling area, include a self-addressed and stamped envelope with your court record request. A staff member will use your self-addressed and stamped envelope to contact you about the amount due. Note, this method of payment takes the most time to process your request for records.

Postage and Handling

For detailed records cost information see the title COPIES in the Fee Schedule.
Postal fee cost is determined using the following scale:
1 - 25 pages $2.00
26 - 200 pages $5.00
Greater than 200 pages = Actual cost

Notification and Record Pick up

If you wish to pick up your records in-person, staff will hold your records for thirty (30) days after you have been notified that the records are ready for pickup. If you do not pickup your records within the thirty (30) day holding period the records will be disposed. If you still wish to have copies of the records that were disposed you must resubmit a records request and pay the amount due.

Types of Copies 

Usual Copy Usual copies are photocopies of any document in the case file. No special status is given to these photocopies.
Certified Copy Certified copy is a photocopy of a document (or documents) in the entirety, stamped, and sworn to be a true copy of the original by the court clerk. If any staple in a certified copy of multiple documents is removed the certification becomes invalid.
Exemplified Copy Exemplified copy is a photocopy of a complete pleading. The court administrator swears that the photocopy of the original is authentic. The presiding judge swears that the signature of the court administrator is authentic. Then the court administrator swears that the signature of the presiding judge is authentic. Exemplified copies of court matters can be required by other states and countries when copies are being submitted for acceptance in those local courts.

Audio Proceedings


In 1996 some courtrooms began recording proceedings using 90 minute audio cassettes accompanied by written records.

  In the Summer of 2002 a ForTheRecord digital audio recording system was installed.
Requests A copy of courtroom proceedings will be created for you after a Court Record Request is completed and submitted to court staff.

After your request has been processed you will receive a compact disk which contains the original courtroom matter.

Or, you may request that the audio files be placed on a secure server, which you may download within thirty (30) days after e-mail notification that the audio files are available.  Provide your e-mail address on the Court Record Request. 
Cost See the title COPIES in the Fee Schedule. There is a $3.00 postage and packaging cost if the compact disk will be mailed to you.
Media Capacities One compact disk will hold approximately 20 hours of digital audio.  A DVD disk will hold substantially more audio.
Processing Time Please allow between one to two weeks, from receipt of your request, for staff to create and mail the audio copy. If you choose to pick up your audio copy in-person, court staff will call you to let you know the audio copy is available for pickup.
Listen To Courtroom Audio You may listen to courtroom compact disk (CD) audio on a any personal computer, which has the following components:
1. a sound card;
2. an internal speaker, or external speakers;
3. FTR Gold Player Plus software, which is the free audio player that plays court audio files. This free software can be downloaded from the web site of the manufacturer.  Compatible with Windows 7 Ultimate; Windows 7 Home Premium; Windows Vista (SP1); Windows XP (SP2/SP3) and Windows 2000 (SP4).  Your computer must have Internet access in order to install the player as some newer Windows network files are a part of the installation.  FTR players are not supported on Apple computers.

Stenographic Notes and Written Transcripts 

Stenographic Court Reporters kept notes of court proceedings for many years before electronic recording.  If the matter in which you are interested occurred during this time period the transcript coordinator will determine which stenographic court reporter created the record of the proceedings.  The transcript coordinator will let you know who you must contact in order to obtain a written transcript.

Please submit a Courts Record Request form.





View Case File Information In-Person  

Typically, cases that were filed within the last four years can be found on the first floor of the courthouse. Please come to Room 135 and complete a Court Record Request.

If the case in which you are interested is older than four years, the case file is typically stored in a less frequently accessed area. Please call a staff member one (1) day in advance, give your case information, and the case file will be located.

Historical Records

Oregon Historical County Records Guide  
Yamhill County Records Inventory