15-15A-7Court records excluded from public access.

The following information in a court record is not accessible to the public:

(1)    Information that is not to be accessible to the public pursuant to federal law;

(2)    Information that is not to be accessible to the public pursuant to state law, court rule or case law as follows;

(3)    Examples of such state laws, court rules, or case law follow. Note this may not be a complete listing and the public and court staff are directed to consult state law, court rules or case law. Note also that additional documents are listed below that may not be within court records but are related to the court system; the public and court staff should be aware of access rules relating to these documents.

(a)    Abortion records (closed); § 34-23A-7.1

(b)    Abuse and neglect files and records (closed, with statutory exceptions); § 26-8A-13

(c)    Adoption files and adoption court records (closed, with statutory exceptions); §§ 25-6-15 through 25-6-15.3

(d)    Affidavit filed in support of search warrant (sealed if so ordered by court, see statutory directives); § 23A-35-4.1

(e)    Attorney discipline records (closed until formal complaint has been filed with Supreme Court by the State Bar Association's Disciplinary Board or Attorney General, accused attorney requests matter be public, or investigation is premised on accused attorney's conviction of a crime); § 16-19-99

(f)    Civil case filing statements (closed); § 15-6-5(h)

(g)    Coroner's inquest (closed until after arrest directed if inquisition finds criminal involvement with death); § 23-14-12

(h)    Custody or visitation dispute mediation proceedings pursuant to § 25-4-60 (closed, inadmissible into evidence)

(i)    Discovery material (closed unless admitted into evidence by court) §§ 15-6-26(c); 15-6-5(g)

(j)    Domestic abuse victim's location (closed, with statutory exception); § 25-10-39

(k)    Employment examination or performance appraisal records maintained by Bureau of Human Resources and Administration (closed); § 1-27-1

(l)    Grand jury proceedings (closed with statutory exceptions); § 23A-5-16

(m)    Guardianships and conservatorships (closed with statutory exceptions); § 29A-5-311

(n)    Involuntary commitment for alcohol and drug abuse (petition, application, report to circuit court and court's protective custody order sealed; law enforcement or prosecutor may petition the court to examine these documents for limited purpose); § 34-20A-70.2

(o)    Judicial disciplinary proceedings (closed until Judicial Qualifications Commission files its recommendation to Supreme Court, accused judge requests matter be public, or investigation is premised on accused judge's conviction of either a felony crime or one involving moral turpitude); ch. 16-1A, Appx. III(1)

(p)    Juvenile court records and court proceedings (closed with statutory exception); §§ 26-7A-36 through -38; §§ 26-7A-113 through -116

(q)    Mental illness court proceedings and court records (closed); §§ 27A-12-25; 27A-12-25.1 through -32

(r)    Pardons (statutory exceptions, see § 24-14-11)

(s)    Presentence investigation reports (closed); §§ 23A-27-5 through -10; § 23A-27-47

(t)    Probationer under suspended imposition of sentence (record sealed upon successful completion of probation conditions and discharge); §§ 23A-27-13.1; 23A-27-17

(u)    Records prepared or maintained by court services officer (closed except by specific order of court); § 23A-27-47

(v)    Trade secrets (closed); subdivision 15-6-26(c)(7)

(w)    Trusts (sealed upon petition with statutory exceptions); § 21-22-28

(x)    Voluntary termination of parental rights proceedings and records (closed except by order of court); § 25-5A-20

(y)    Wills (closed with statutory exceptions); § 29A-2-515

(z)    Written communication between attorney and client; attorney work product (closed unless such privilege is waived); ch. 16-18, Appx. Rule 1.6

(aa)    Information filed with the court pending in camera review (closed)

(bb)    Any other record declared to be confidential by law; § 1-27-3.

Source: SL 2004, ch 333 (Supreme Court Rule 04-06), eff. July 1, 2004; SL 2005, ch 291 (Supreme Court Rule 05-05), eff. Feb. 25, 2005; SL 2012, ch 23, § 93; SL 2024, ch 1 (Ex. Ord. 24-1), § 35, eff. Apr. 8, 2024.