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Open records court decisions

BY BRYAN DEAN Staff Writer Published: February 11, 2013

Following are some of the milestone court decisions and attorney general opinions affecting the Oklahoma Open Records Act since it passed in 1985.


Tulsa Tribune Co. v. Oklahoma Horseracing Commission

The Oklahoma Supreme Court required public bodies or courts considering whether to release records to favor disclosure over denial. The party urging exemption has the burden of proof.


Attorney General's Opinion 1996-26

This opinion said records custodians can't sell those records to outside organizations and not provide them to the public as well. This was later determined to be applicable to private contractors as well.


Attorney General's Opinion 1999-55

This opinion negated a policy by the state Labor Department requiring those requesting records enter into written contracts. The opinion allows public entities to require information from requestors only to reasonably determine whether the request is for a commercial purpose which would allow a search fee.


Attorney General's Opinion 1999-58

This opinion found that pleadings in a criminal court case are records under the law and must be made available by court clerks once they are filed with the clerk's office unless the pleading has been sealed by a court or is protected by some other confidentiality privilege.


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